INDIA Jet and FedEx said to be discussing cargo

Jet Airways, India’s largest airline, is reported to be in early discussions with FedEx Corp. for a dedicated cargo airline that it wishes to set up either as a joint venture or in alliance with the global express logistics firm, according to a Hindustan Times report which cited an independent consultant, as well as two […]


Jet Airways, India’s largest airline, is reported to be in early discussions with FedEx Corp. for a dedicated cargo airline that it wishes to set up either as a joint venture or in alliance with the global express logistics firm, according to a Hindustan Times report which cited an independent consultant, as well as two executives of the airline familiar with the development. Jet Airways chairman Naresh Goyal had planned to launch a cargo airline with Lufthansa, but the global economic slowdown quickly ended that ambition.

The revival of Jet Airways’ cargo plans comes a few days after Kingfisher Airlines launched a new door-to-door express cargo delivery service, Kingfisher Xpress, on 2 February. Another Jet rival and lowfare carrier Go Airlines (India) that runs GoAir, is also planning to relaunch its cargo services shortly under the brand name GoCargo. GoAir had discontinued its cargo services last year. But neither GoCargo nor Kingfisher Xpress are pure cargo offerings; their business model is built around using available bellycargo capacity of their passenger aircraft.

Another Delhi-based low-fare carrier SpiceJet has similar cargo operations and carries 120 tonnes of cargo a day. “Globally, revenue from cargo is 2-3 per cent for passenger airlines. Managing belly cargo and starting dedicated cargo services are two different things. Though it (news of the talks between Jet and FedEx) shows Jet Airways is upbeat about translating ancillary revenues into a permanent stream of income, I doubt whether the Indian market is ripe for just pure play,” according to an airline consultant cited by the Hindustan report.