SpiceJet on Sunday said that it plans to hire up to 2,000 staff, including pilots and cabin crew, of the debt-ridden Jet Airways, PTI reported. The airline has taken over at least 22 planes that were earlier used by Jet Airways.

On April 17, Jet Airways, which has massive amounts of debt, decided to temporarily suspend all domestic and international operations after its lenders, led by the State Bank of India, declined emergency funds. Etihad Airways and a few other parties have offered to acquire stake in the debt-ridden carrier.

“We have taken a significant number of people from Jet Airways,” SpiceJet Chairperson and Managing Director Ajay Singh told PTI in an interview. “They were well-qualified and professional people. We will continue to take more Jet staff in the times to come. We have taken around 1,100 people so far. Expectation is that we will go up to 2,000 people. It will be pilots, cabin crew, [people] from airport services, security...”

SpiceJet has around 14,000 staff and a fleet of 100 planes, the agency said, However, Singh asserted that SpiceJet would not currently operate the wide-body aircraft that Jet Airways used.

On May 28, SpiceJet announced that it had made a net profit of Rs 56.3 crore in the January-March quarter, a 22% rise since the previous quarter. Singh said the airline has no plans to raise funds presently.

“We are going to expand 80% credit capacity this year,” he said. “A lot of the capacity is being expanded through the leasing route. Therefore, it may not require huge amount of cash and this year we also expect to be significantly profitable. Also, get significant cash flow through sale and lease back.”