Air India-Vistara merger talks on, clarity in few months: Vistara CEO

The discussion of the merger of Tata Group-owned Air India and Vistara has been in the industry for quite a while, and the recent interview of Vinod Kannan sparked rumours. 

Air India-Vistara merger talks on, clarity in few months: Vistara CEO

Air India and Vistara are two airlines owned by the Indian organisation Tata Group and the possibility of their merger has been in speculation for quite a while. However, still, the topic is under speculation as there is no official announcement on the subject. Though, it has not stopped the reports of active discussions going on between the stakeholders regarding the merger. After a recent interview of Vistara chief Vinod Kannan, rumours sparked about the merger in the coming weeks. It is to be noted that the rumours of the merger of both airlines have been there even before Air India's control came back into Tata Group's hands.

The Indian conglomerate owns four Indian airlines at present, namely, Air India, Vistara, AirAsia India, and Air India Express. Among these, Air India and Vistara pose a lot of similarities to all the airlines, and hence the talks of their merger have remained a hot topic in the aviation industry. However, since a part of the stakes of Vistara is owned by Singapore Airlines, its interest has been one of the hurdles in the merger.

However, in an interview given to the Hindustan Times, Vinod Kannan said, "All possibilities are being discussed. Since we are a joint venture, the two shareholders will have to discuss a road map for the future. Whether it’s going to be a merger or we will have two separate airlines are all options that are still on the table. To be sure, the discussions have begun, and according to me, we should have clarity on this in the next few months."

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While Kannan also shared the possibility of a codeshare agreement in the interview with Hindustan Times, saying, "Air India and Vistara are still independent entities … We do not have any codeshare with Air India, but we have started working on those lines by having the ‘flight interruption agreement’ … However, if this leads to a commercial agreement such as a codeshare or an interline agreement will probably be the next step, which we have not started discussing."

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