The government- owned helicopter operator Pawan Hans is all set to significantly augment its fleet size. According to a recently published report in a national daily, Pawan Hans is likely to spend about Rs. 560 crore to acquire 12 more aircrafts to its fleet. The company currently has a fleet size of 46 helicopters and also runs a seaplane service in Andaman & Nicobar islands with one aircraft.
Quoting a senior civil aviation ministry official, the report underlines that the fleet expansion drive will be undertaken during the course of the present fiscal. Of the proposed expenditure for fleet expansion, Pawan Hans is slated to borrow 80 percent of the required funds while the remaining 20 percent will be pumped in through internal resources.
The government has already expressed its intention of divesting its stake in Pawan Hans through the initial public offering route during the present fiscal. The fleet expansion drive at this juncture is slated to create better value for the company in the capital market. Even analysts believe that considering the growing demand for helicopter services, Pawan Hans will derive rich dividends by growing its fleet size. Pawan Hans, is a mini-ratna PSU, which had posted a revenue of Rs. 530 crore and a profit of Rs. 38.6 crore during 2013-14.