Tata group will invest in new aircraft and technologies to make Air India a world class airline and undertake an organisational redesign to make it future ready like its other group companies, group chairman N Chandrasekaran said on Wednesday.
Chandrasekaran, who last week was selected as Tata Sons chairman for the second term, outlined the group vision in his maiden address to Air India employees.
“We are committed to make Air India a world class airline. I am confident that working together we can achieve that goal much faster, Chandrasekaran said. Evoking the memory of Air India founder JRD Tata, he exhorted that if all the employees work with a similar passion, the group will be able to achieve its goals in a short time frame.
The salt-to-steel conglomerate completed the takeover of Air India last month. On Tuesday it announced the appointment of former Turkish Airlines chairman Ilker Ayci as CEO of Air India. The fifteen minute address however made no mention about the CEO appointment.
Chandrasekaran said the group will focus on customer service, upgrade fleet, invest in new aircraft and expand the network to connect every corner of the world. “We want Air India to be best in class in customer service. We want Air India to be the most technologically advanced airline in the world,” he stated. He said that the Tata group brand is known for trust and reliability and similarly Air India must win customer confidence by ensuring flights are “on time every time.”
He added that the group will also ensure that Air India becomes a financially strong company.
At present Air India and Air India Express have a fleet of 141 Airbus and Boeing aircraft. Under the previous management the airline has been unable to spruce up the fleet or invest in technologies due to a cash crunch.
The group, he said, will upgrade mobile app and website for digital reach and rely on automation and machine learning algorithms to mine customer data and deliver a personalized experience.
“The task is huge…But we have the entire nation wanting us to succeed. I know Air India has what it takes to succeed. We just need inspiration to come together and put our best effort,” he said. “This will require a huge transformation, probably the largest transformation you would ever grow through,” he added.
The group, he said, will change the organisational design, digitise processes and set targets at individual, department and company level to achieve its goals.