Historic Q4 but not all time best – IndiGo’s Q4 and FY 23 results

IndiGo declares its Q4 and FY23 results this afternoon. The airline had its best ever Q4 but could not keep up with the momentum it had built in Q3. The airline had recorded its highest ever passengers on the domestic front, highest ever flights and to top it but could not record the highest ever revenue or highest ever profits! In fact, the airline could not cross the INR 15,000 crore mark this quarter.

The airline recorded a profit of INR 918.68 crore in Q4-FY23 which helped the airline close the year with a loss of INR 298 crore. This speaks volume about the depth that IndiGo has made in the Indian market and how it has eventually been able to use it to its advantage by pushing the yields higher. 

This comes on the backdrop of crossing 20 million domestic passengers and recording 2.4 million international passengers. The airline had 55.7% market share in domestic skies and 15.79% of share in international footfalls of traffic from and to india. Amongst Indian carriers, this was 35.5%, which is higher than Air India but lower than the entire Tata group of companies put together. 

The results

The profit of INR 918.68 crore in Q4 came on the back of a record revenue of INR 14,600 crore comprising other income of INR 439.5 crore. The airline has been silent on calling out the compensation from Pratt & Whitney. The question has more sensitivity this time around since Go FIRST filed for bankruptcy early this month claiming that its failure is solely because of Pratt & Whitney and the delay in replacement engines along with the engine life being lower than promised. IndiGo’s grounded planes number in the upper 30s by their own admission and there isn’t specific date at hand on when its entire fleet will be available for commercial operations.

The current results are lower than the Q3-FY23 performance when the airline had recorded a profit of INR 1422.6 crore, joining global peers in turning a leaf towards profitability. The airlines’ previous best was in the April to June quarter of 2019 (Q1-FY20) when it clocked INR 1203 crores on the back of fall of Jet Airways.

One wonders if the grounding helped take out necessary capacity since the yields have not lived up to the previous quarter, indicating that discounting was needed. 

On the expenditure side, Fuel comprised 41% of total expenditure, while employee costs stood at 9.5%. The Go FIRST suspension could open up a pool of pilots for both IndiGo and Air India but they are likely to come under pressure from the middle east where new carriers are taking to the skies and existing want to expand rapidly. The bonuses paid by Emirates and Singapore Airlines after record profits would be an additional pull for the entire aviation workforce in general and pilots in particular.


At the end of last quarter, the airline had a fleet of 304 planes, comprising 162 A320neo, 79 A321neo, 21 A320ceo and 39 ATR 72-600. The airline also has a fleet of 2 A321 freighters. The airline intends to add anywhere between 40 to 50 new planes this fiscal year but would largely be dependent on how the supply chain issues play out for the airline. While facing challenges all around, the airline has been committed to fleet renewal. It had 275 aircraft at the end of the previous fiscal and since then it has inducted 19 A320neo, 23 A321neo and 4 ATR on the passenger side. At the time it retired 20 A320ceo.

The airline ended the year with 85.6 million passengers and aims to cross the 100 million mark this fiscal. In the last quarter’s post results call, the airline had communicated about its plans to start services to Jakarta and Nairobi. The dates have not been announced but the airline remains committed to these destinations, was reiterated in the call this evening.

Tail Note

As Go FIRST talks of restarting operations, IndiGo is best placed to take advantage of the current market condition. Air India has not been proactive with its induction with its recently received narrowbody aircraft awaiting commercial induction. Vistara, too, has quite a few aircraft on ground and the expected tough competition from the Tata group is at bay, for now. 

Uncertainties are a part and parcel of aviation in general and Indian aviation in particular, how the current quarter performs will go a long way in defining the year ahead.


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