Air India Wants To “Fix The Basics” And Increase Its Domestic Market Share

  • Tom Boon-200

    Air India

    IATA/ICAO Code:
    IA/AIC

    AirlineType:
    Full Service Carrier

    Hub(s):
    Delhi Indira Gandhi International Airport

    Year Founded:
    1946

    Alliance:
    Star Alliance

    CEO:
    Campbell Wilson

    Country:
    India

Air India has revealed its long-term vision for the company in which it hopes to transform the airline into a world-class product centered around Indian values. The carrier recently released a statement detailing its short-term and long-term plans and the various initiatives already underway following its acquisition by the Tata Group.


dawn of a new era

Air India’s privatization came with massive expectations from Indian citizens who wished to see the airline return to its glorious past and join the ranks of other world-class carriers. Fully aware of those hopes, Air India has revealed a multi-stage transformation roadmap – a plan called Vihaan.AI, which signifies the dawn of a new era in Sanskrit.

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AI’s new owners have kickstarted the process of the airline’s cleanup. Photo: Getty Images

Fully aware of the challenges it faces in the transformation, Air India has identified key objectives and has given itself five years to achieve them in a phased manner. The primary milestones to hit include “growing both its network and fleetdeveloping a completely revamped customer proposition, improving reliability and on-time performance, and taking a leadership position in technology, sustainability, and innovation, while aggressively investing behind the best industry talent.”

The airline’s chief, Campbell Wilson, and other senior executives revealed the plan to the entire organization and will engage with employees across regions, departments, and locations through a series of physical and hybrid sessions in the coming days and weeks.

Air India’s new Vihaan. AI initiative plans to turn it into a world-class carrier. Photo: Airbus

The top leaders took extensive feedback from Air India employees to get a sense of what they want from the airline and how they envision the company in the future. Following the discussion, it was decided that Vihaan.AI will focus on five key pillars:

  1. Exceptional customer experience
  2. Robust operations
  3. Industry-best talent
  4. Industry leadership
  5. Commercial efficiency and profitability

To achieve this, the airline has identified areas that need immediate fixing (Taxiing Phase) and the more medium-to-long term focus, such as establishing scale – including capturing up to 30% domestic market share – to become a global industry leader (Take Off & Climb phases).

The carrier wants to focus on fixing several issues, including customer care, sustainability, and market share. Photo: Getty Images

Wilson commented,

“This is the beginning of a historic transformation for Air India, and the dawn of a new era. We are laying the foundation for a brave new Air India, with a renewed sense of purpose and incredible momentum. Vihaan.AI is our transformation plan to make Air India the world class airline it once was, and that it deserves to be again. We are absolutely focussed on being recognized as a world-class airline serving global customers, with a proudly Indian heart.”

initiatives underway

Even as the plan was revealed to the employees, several steps are already underway for the eventual transformation of Air India. Wilson highlighted that a slew of initiatives, such as refurbishing cabins, serviceable seats, and in-flight entertainment systems, is already being looked at. Adopting proactively maintenance and refining flight schedules to enhance on-time performance are also areas that are being improved currently.

Air India will also receive new aircraft shortly to increase capacity. Photo: Getty Images

Air India is also on a fleet expansion mode to add capacity to domestic and international networks and has embarked upon a digitalization process for many of its departments for seamless operations.

The plans are, indeed, lofty, but so are the customers’ expectations from Air India. Here’s wishing them all the luck.

What do you think about Air India’s Vihaan.AI transformation strategy? Please leave your comments below.

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