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Last Updated : Apr 17, 2019 09:19 PM IST | Source: Moneycontrol.com

Jet Airways halts ops: CEO Vinay Dube tells employees to keep chin up

After a board meeting on April 16, the management had authorised Dube to make one last appeal to the lenders for an emergency funding of Rs 400 crore and take a final call on the future of the airline if they refused.

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Jet Airways CEO Vinay Dube on April 17 wrote an emotional letter to the employees of his airline after the management decided to temporarily suspend operations.

After a board meeting on April 16, the management had authorised Dube to make one last appeal to the lenders for an emergency funding of Rs 400 crore and take a final call on the future of the airline if they refused.

Here is the full text of the letter:

Hi Everyone,

Late last night we were informed by SBI, on behalf of the consortium of Indian lenders, that they are unable to consider our request for interim funding of INR 983 crores. Because no emergency funding from the lenders or any other source of funding is forthcoming, it will not be possible for the Company to pay for fuel or other critical services to keep the operations going. Consequently, with immediate effect we are compelled to cancel all international flights as well as our domestic flights. This decision has been taken after painstaking evaluation of all alternatives and after receiving guidance and advice on the same from the Board of Directors of Jet Airways. We have also informed the DGCA, and the Ministries of Civil Aviation and Finance and other relevant government institutions, of this course of action.

A decision like this is never easy to make, but without the interim funding, which we have been repeatedly requesting for, we are simply unable to conduct flight operations in a manner that delivers to the very reasonable expectations of our guests, employees, partners and service providers. Over the last several weeks and months we have tried every means possible to seek funding, both interim funding as well as long term funding, to keep our operations going, but we were not successful.

But, tomorrow is another day and tomorrow provides us with new hope, new opportunity and new expectations. In their response to us late last night, the lenders have also said, "The Expressions of Interest (EOI) have been received and bid documents have been issued to the eligible recipients today. The bid documents inter alia has solicited plans for a quick revival of the company. The bid process will conclude on 10th May 2019 … We are actively working to try and ensure that the bid process leads to a viable solution for the company”. On our part, we will keep supporting the bid process initiated by the lenders. We know that India is better off with a flying Jet Airways, and so do our potential investors. With a smile on our face and pride in our hearts, we have become the flag-bearer of warm Indian hospitality the world over. We have fuelled India's economic engine enabling business travellers and tourists alike to traverse the world. Families have grown up with Jet Airways and have come to love our people as much as our brand. Even during the toughest of times every employee has worn a smile on their face and put their duty to our guests and the nation first. We are worth investing in, you are worth investing in and we confident that we will be back to share the joy of flying with our fellow-guests once again.

However, we must also be realistic that the sales process will take some time and will throw up several more challenges for us, many of which we don’t have the answers to, today. For example, we don’t have an answer today to the very important question of “what happens to us employees during the sale process”. Your leadership team is working on answering such questions alongside the lenders. In the interim, I must request the many people that continue to provide essential services for our guests, partners and suppliers to keep doing their job as best as possible. Since our guests, partners and suppliers have also stood by us through thick and thin, we must do whatever little we can, under the circumstances to ease their difficulties. As and when we have further clarity on this topic we will communicate with you.

Jet Airways is unique and it is unique because of its employees. We must be given another chance.

As before, to you, the most amazing employees of Jet Airways, you have our unequivocal gratitude and respect in equal measure.

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First Published on Apr 17, 2019 08:47 pm
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