IndiGo owner InterGlobe appoints aviation veteran Ronojoy Dutta as CEO; M Damodaran named chairman of board

Aviation veteran Ronojoy Dutta has been appointed as Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of IndiGo for a period of five years as it plans a major international expansion this year, the low-cost airline announced Thursday.

The position was lying vacant for about nine months when President Aditya Ghosh resigned in April 2018 after a decade of piloting the airline.

M Damodaran, former Chairman of Securities Exchange Board of India (SEBI), has been appointed as chairman of the Indigo's board of directors, the budget carrier said.

Dutta would be taking the charge of CEO from the company's co-founder and interim CEO Rahul Bhatia, who stated Wednesday that the next phase of company's growth would come from international expansion.

Dutta, an alumnus of IIT and Harvard Business School, had recently joined the airline as a consultant. He was earlier the co-founder and Managing Director of ACO Investment, an investment advisory firm in the field of aviation and infrastructure.

Dutta has also served on the board of Marsico Trust Funds from 1997 to 2005, the budget passenger carrier said.

IndiGo owner InterGlobe appoints aviation veteran Ronojoy Dutta as CEO; M Damodaran named chairman of board

Representational image. Reuters.

Dutta was President of United Airlines, where he worked for nearly twenty years, holding various senior leadership positions including senior Vice President (VP) Planning, senior VP Maintenance, VP Finance and VP Information technology.

Dutta also served as the President of Air Sahara for two years. Moreover, he was an advisor to the restructuring of both Air Canada and US Airways.

"IndiGo has had phenomenal success in establishing itself as a world-class airline, and I am so very happy to be given this opportunity to be a part of it. IndiGo is blessed to be operating in one of the highest growth economies of the world, and this opens up future opportunities for rapid growth," Dutta said Thursday.

InterGlobe Aviation, parent of IndiGo, Wednesday reported a 75 per cent fall in net profit at Rs 190.9 crore in the December quarter as high fuel prices and currency depreciation adversely impacted the bottom line. The airline had a profit after tax of Rs 762 crore in the corresponding period of 2017-18?.

"Profitability was adversely impacted by high fuel prices and currency depreciation," the airline said yesterday in a presentation to analysts and institutional investors.

While answering analysts' questions during a post-results conference call Wednesday, Bhatia said: "We have a huge advantage in going international in that we are going there on single-aisle planes...In those (international) markets where we are going to fly with our single-aisle low-cost strategy, we will have huge profit margins. So, we are very excited about our growth opportunities internationally."

On Wednesday, IndiGo posted a 75 per cent fall in its third-quarter profit to Rs 190.89 crore due to high fuel prices and rupee depreciation. Profit in the year-ago quarter was Rs 762.03 crore. However, revenue from operations rose 28 per cent to Rs 7,916.22 crore.

"We have posted a profit of Rs 1.9 billion in a continued difficult environment and have grown our fleet by one aircraft a week for a 33 per cent capacity increase for the quarter. Very few airlines around the world have the operational resilience to absorb such rapid growth," IndiGo co-founder and interim CEO Rahul Bhatia had said.

With inputs from agencies

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Updated Date: Jan 25, 2019 07:17:03 IST

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