Jet Airways stock trading higher ahead of Tata Sons board meet to discuss takeover of ailing carrier

Jet Airways stock trading higher ahead of Tata Sons board meet to discuss takeover of ailing carrier

The Jet Airways stock extended gains for the fourth consecutive session in trade today ahead of a board meeting by Tata Sons at 12 pm today to discuss a proposal to buy out the cash-strapped airline.  The stock rose up to 11.10% to 356.60 level in trade today compared to the previous close of 320.95 on the BSE.

On Thursday, the stock saw its biggest intra day gain ever rising 29.93% to 334.90 level amid reports that the Tata Group was likely to acquire the struggling carrier. The stock closed 24.52% or 63 points higher at 320.95 on the BSE.

Jet Airways stock trading higher ahead of Tata Sons board meet to discuss takeover of ailing carrier

The stock has been gaining for the last four days and risen 41.13% in the period. The small cap stock has lost 50.02% during the last one year and fallen 58.88% since the beginning of this year. Interestingly, the stock has gained 57.04% during the last one month.

The stock is trading above its 50 day moving average of 214.10 and below its 200 day moving average of 318.55.

Tata already owns and operates two airlines in the country: full-service carrier Vistara, which is in partnership with Singapore Airlines and low-cost carrier AirAsia India in combination with AirAsia Group Bhd.

The talks come as a mix of rising oil prices, a weak rupee, low fares and competition has seen profit dive in the world’s fastest-growing aviation market, which is clocking 20 percent annual passenger growth.

Meanwhile, amid talks about the government nudging the Tatas to bail out the struggling airline in the social media, an aviation ministry official denied that government is brokering a deal which may include the lenders and other stakeholders of the Naresh Goyal-run airline taking a haircut.

Stating that the ministry is not “involved” in any such process at this stage, aviation secretary RN Choubey said that “the aviation ministry is not involved in this process so far. Hence any question of haircut (by banks and other stakeholders) etc does not arise.”

Jet, founded by entrepreneur Naresh Goyal, is struggling to make payments to creditors including aircraft lessors and employees, and has seen its share price plunge 70 percent so far this year.

The airline said on Monday it would cut flights on less profitable routes and add capacity to more lucrative markets as part of a broader consolidation plan to reduce costs and boost revenue after it reported its third consecutive quarterly loss.

Naresh Goyal owns 51 percent of the airline while 24 percent is held by Etihad Airways.

However, Jet Airways has termed media reports of Tata group carrying out due diligence to acquire the airline as “speculative”.

Jet Airways (India) in a communication to the stock exchanges said, “The subject news is speculative in nature and that there is no discussion or decision in the board which would require a disclosure”. Separately, its deputy chief executive and chief financial officer, Amit Aggarwal, in the post-earnings analysts call on Tuesday also termed the reports speculative and said that unless something get materialised, the company will not comment.

The airline reported Rs 1,261-crore loss for the quarter ended September. However, net loss narrowed from Rs 1,323 crore loss reported in the first quarter of the current fiscal.

Higher fuel costs that soared 59 percent, and a steep rupee fall that led to a sevenfold spike in forex losses resulted in Rs 1,261 crore net loss for the airline in the second quarter. It had posted a net profit of Rs 71 crore in the same period last fiscal.

The cash-strapped airline, which is reportedly looking for investors tide over the liquidity crisis, said its fuel bill jumped 58.6 percent to Rs 2,419.76 crore during the quarter. In the year-ago period, it had spent Rs 1,525.66 crore in fuel cost.

Another crippling factor was the forex loss, which jumped more than six-times to Rs 416.69 crore from Rs 72.99 crore in the year-ago period.

However, the airline reported a 9.50% rise in net sales to Rs 6,161.15 crore in Q2 compared to Rs 5,626.61 crore sales in the corresponding quarter of the previous fiscal. Net sales in Q1 of the current fiscal stood at Rs 6,010. 46 crore.

source: businesstoday