Tiger to focus on bringing Mandala, Seair back to profitability

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Tiger Airways Holdings says it remains open to new joint ventures, but stressed that its immediate focus is on bringing its Indonesia and Philippine associates back into the black.

The group also warns that Seair and Mandala Airlines will likely continue to be in the red for the rest of the financial year.

"We're open to new ventures that might come by, but now our focus is on Indonesia and the Philippines and to bring them back to profitability in the shortest time possible," says the carrier's group chief executive Koay Peng Yen. "At this stage, however, we won't comment on how long it'll take."

For the quarter ended 31 December, the group recorded a loss of Singapore dollars (S$) 8.3 million ($6.76 million) from its investment in Seair. It has also not recognised its share of cumulative losses in Mandala amounting to S$14.3 million as of end-2012.

Both carriers continue to face start-up issues, says Koay. An example is how Seair, a relatively young airline, has to build its presence among larger carriers in a competitive market.

"Mandala and Seair will work towards increasing their share of the respective markets through possible partnerships with industry players, the introduction of new routes and improving customer experience," he adds.

"Mandala and Seair continue to face challenges in their respective markets and are unlikely to contribute positively to the group's performance for FY2012/13. Nonetheless, the longer-term potential of the Indonesia and Philippine air travel market is promising."

Tiger holds a 33% stake in Mandala and a 40% stake in Seair.