Interglobe Aviation Ltd, which had been grappling with higher maintenance costs at the carrier amid slowing demand, was forced to halt all operations as India went into a lockdown in March to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

File photo: Reuters

The parent of India’s largest airline IndiGo reported a quarterly loss on Tuesday as expenses rose, and did not provide a forecast on capacity due to a hit to operations from the Covid-19 pandemic.

Interglobe Aviation Ltd, which had been grappling with higher maintenance costs at the carrier amid slowing demand, was forced to halt all operations as India went into a lockdown in March to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

Aircraft repair-and-maintenance expenses for the fourth quarter rose 75.6% to 16.81 billion rupees ($223.71 million), raising the company’s overall costs, excluding spending for fuel, higher by 45.6%. Cost per available seat kilometer, including fuel, rose 25.8% to 4.21 rupees.

Higher expenses led to a net loss of 8.73 billion Indian rupees ($116.19 million) for the fourth quarter ended March 31, compared to a profit of 5.90 billion rupees a year earlier.

Revenue from operations rose 5.3% to 82.99 billion rupees, while revenue per available seat kilometer (RASK) rose marginally by 0.5%, though the company said the nationwide lockdown significantly impacted revenue for the quarter.

Indigo, which dominates the domestic market, in April asked its employees to go on leave without pay for a few days every month, while some of its senior management took pay cuts.

After a two-month halt, India last week allowed domestic airlines to start a third of its operations until August 24.

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