And alongside partnering with the Tata's, AirAsia's joint venture proposal for the subcontinent also partially uncovers Fernandes' other passion: sports.
Telestra Tradeplace's Arun Bhatia, the third partner in the deal, is the father of Amit Bhatia, co-owner and vice-chairman of London's Queens Park Rangers, the football club where Fernandes is chairman.
Then, there is, of course, the Caterham Formula One team (previously Team Lotus), which Fernandes leads as co-chairman, yet another circuit where he contends with Kingfisher's Mallya and the Force India F1 team.
But with the 'King of Good Times' fighting to keep his airline flying, this Malaysian baron has smartly driven his way into pole position.
Air Asia-led JV, though, could face regulatory challenges, said Kapil Kaul of Centre for Asia Pacific Aviation. "It isn't clear if India will clear their licenses," he said.