Blackstone seeks stake in Jet loyalty arm

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Jet has embarked upon a reorganisation of its JetPrivilege program to establish the unit as an independent loyalty and rewards firm.

Jet Airways (Photo: Representational/PTI)

Bengaluru: US private equity firm Blackstone Group is in talks to acquire a stake in the frequent-flier loyalty program of Jet Airways, Bloomberg reported on Wednesday, citing people familiar with the matter.

A potential deal could value the loyalty program, Jet Privilege Private, between Rs 3,000 crore to Rs 4,000 crore  ($429.1 million-$572.1 million) and would be dependant on Jet Airways securing adequate funding for its airline operations, Bloomberg said.

The carrier and its partner Etihad Airways will remain investors in Jet Privilege even after a potential Blackstone transaction, Bloomberg said.

Etihad owns 50.1 per cent of the loyalty program, while Jet Airways owns the rest. “As a minority shareholder (in Jet Airways), Etihad continues to work constructively with the Jet Airways board, promoter and management team,” an Etihad spokesman said in an emailed statement.

Earlier this week, Jet said it was considering various options on priority to meet its funding requirements but called media reports on stake sale or plans to monetize its investment in its frequent flier program as “purely speculative”.

The airline has also deferred its quarterly earnings report. Blackstone was not immediately reachable for comment, while Jet Airways was unavailable for comment on account of a public holiday.

Jet has embarked upon a reorganisation of its JetPrivilege program to establish the unit as an independent loyalty and rewards firm.   

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