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SpiceJet management churn still on, 4 senior executives resign

Spice-Jet’s financial problems have spooked its employees. The latest instance was when they didn’t get their tax declaration forms.

Updated: Aug 26, 2014, 05.01 AM IST
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 Spice-Jet’s financial problems have spooked its employees. The latest instance was when they didn’t get their tax declaration forms. 
 Spice-Jet’s financial problems have spooked its employees. The latest instance was when they didn’t get their tax declaration forms. 
CHENNAI/MUMBAI: The management churn in financially beleagured carrier SpiceJet is still on. In the last two weeks four senior executives at the airline have put in their papers, three sources in the know told ET.

Exits include Anurag Jain senior vice president network planning , Sandeep Verma head of in-flight services, Anshu Tiwari general manager HR and IP Singh chief security officer. Sources said some more exits are likely to follow.

“I.P. Singh is retiring and going to migrate to the U.S. to be with his kids. This has been planned for months now as he is 67. The other exits are a combination of those choosing to move on, and those asked to move on,” a spokesperson at the airline told ET. “Note that none of them are heads of departments as your previous email had suggested, and middle management movement is quite common in our industry,” he added.

The airline’s chief operating officer Sanjiv Kapoor took to Twitter, posting the airline has had some “exceptional talent” joining it in the last few months.

“"The old order changeth yielding place to new, lest one good custom should corrupt the world" Alfred Tennyson. Change is the only constant!” he tweeted.

One of the sources quoted above said about 50 pilots have also put in their papers. The spokesman didn’t confirm the number but said “pilot attrition is an ongoing challenge at Indian carriers”.

SpiceJet has cut capacity since last year reducing its fleetsize by five aeroplanes. Spice-Jet’s financial problems have spooked its employees. The latest instance was when they didn’t get their tax declaration forms from the management. The issue hasn’t been sorted yet. SpiceJet has maintained silence on the issue.

The spokesman said attributing employee exits to the issue of tax forms would be “a bit of a stretch”.

The recent exits add to a long list of resignations the airline has seen during this year after Kapoor took over as its COO in January.

In a recent interview Kapoor said almost half of the heads of departments at the airline had been replaced. “There's a belief among management experts that the people who took you to a hole are not the ones that will get you out of it. Which is not to say that everybody who was there was bad. That's not the case. All I am saying is you need fresh blood and fresh ideas. So some amount of management churn at the senior level is natural in a turnaround situation,” Kapoor had said in a recent interview.

Some of the exits are surprising and emphasise the airline’s trial and error strategy. For instance,Jain had been moved in March from network planning and revenue management to network planning & strategy development.

SpiceJet has been bleeding heavily, although it has managed to fill seats and steadily nibble bigger chunks of the market in recent months. It posted a loss of posted a loss of Rs124.10 crore in April-June.

The spokesperson clarified there have been appointments as there have been exits. “Most recently we added a senior GM of crew planning and rostering, Rina Basu, who was formerly GM of crew planning at Delta Airlines in Atlanta. He also mentioned Arun Kashyap who joined as GM in engineering from Fly Dubai and Abraham Thomas who also joined as a GM in Engineering from Jet.
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