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US/AA merger- MASTER DISCUSSION THREAD/incl 'when will US leave STAR'

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US/AA merger- MASTER DISCUSSION THREAD/incl 'when will US leave STAR'

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Old Dec 8, 13, 9:45 am   -   Wikipost
Please read: This is a community-maintained wiki post containing the most important information from this thread. You may edit the Wiki once you have been on FT for 90 days and have made 90 posts.
 
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Note:

There is an existing thread in the AA forum that may be useful to US and AA Flyertalkers:
US-AA Merger: Just the Facts thread

As facts become posted, that should be the place to look.

Merger discussion, speculation, and other questions can be directed here, or the similar thread in the AA forum:
MERGER: US and AA 9 Dec 2013 and implications for AA flyers (new)

AA - US Merger Agreement / Announcement / DOJ Action Discussion (consolidated, and now closed to new posts)
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Old Aug 26, 13, 11:21 am
  #1561  
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Originally Posted by Jasper2 View Post
The precedent you should look at is that every 7 out of the last 8 mergers went though. There is a LOT of money on the table. (Hint)

None of the arguments put forth by DOJ are any more true of the US Air/American merger than any of the the others that have successfully merged. The fact is that relatively small airlines don't last long when competing against giants. There are few markets that would be affected by the merger--two I believe. DOJ objections are mostly BS. Read them if you don't believe it. Zero factual data, lots of hot air.
Yes, AS, B6, F9, HA, VX, and others are having a very difficult time surviving and "lasting long" against the giants.
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Old Aug 26, 13, 11:24 am
  #1562  
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Originally Posted by CenterWaters View Post
especially considering that almost all AA and US frequent flyers were overjoyed
about the AA/US merger! The court will have to take that into consideration.
Who are these "almost all AA and US frequent flyers" thare are "overjoyed" about this merger? I'm certainly not.

Speak for yourself.

And ask the UA/CO flyers how "overjoyed" they are with the "changes you'll like" that UA instituted since the merger.
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Old Aug 26, 13, 1:22 pm
  #1563  
 
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Originally Posted by coastalguy View Post
Along those lines, isn't it most likely the merger will prevail? (UA and CO being the most recent precedent.)

AFAIK, no one even batted an eyelash when DL bought SQ's 49% stake in VS for $360MM (about 1/3 of what SQ originally paid).
The DoJ recently blocked the merger of AT&T with TMobile.

That merger actually made more financial sense and would not have impacted the consumer nearly as much as this one.
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Old Aug 26, 13, 4:37 pm
  #1564  
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Originally Posted by AdrianFenty View Post
The DoJ recently blocked the merger of AT&T with TMobile.

That merger actually made more financial sense and would not have impacted the consumer nearly as much as this one.
everyone keeps bringing up that. The fact is these are two WAY different mergers. The airlines can't grow and can only merge. Tmobile and at&T are healthy companies that can grow on their own. The only reason so many mergers fail when the doj intervenes is because most companies don't want to go to trial. US/AA are taking it to the bitter end.

This merger is almost past the point of no return. US sold their company HQ in Tempe. Most of AA's former leadership has moved on as they were told they would not be a part of this new company. Gates have already been combined. USairs 330's coming this year have the new american branding in them. US has stopped selling codes on UA flight and has changed it's flight numbers to mirror AAs.

Not to mention all the sensitive company info that has already been passed around. The merger for all purposes has already been completed the only left to do is flip the switch.
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Old Aug 26, 13, 5:33 pm
  #1565  
 
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Originally Posted by Kootur View Post
everyone keeps bringing up that. The fact is these are two WAY different mergers. The airlines can't grow and can only merge. Tmobile and at&T are healthy companies that can grow on their own. The only reason so many mergers fail when the doj intervenes is because most companies don't want to go to trial. US/AA are taking it to the bitter end.

This merger is almost past the point of no return. US sold their company HQ in Tempe. Most of AA's former leadership has moved on as they were told they would not be a part of this new company. Gates have already been combined. USairs 330's coming this year have the new american branding in them. US has stopped selling codes on UA flight and has changed it's flight numbers to mirror AAs.

Not to mention all the sensitive company info that has already been passed around. The merger for all purposes has already been completed the only left to do is flip the switch.
Hopefully the courts won't care if these two companies went charging ahead prematurely, and will make their decision based on what's best for the consumer. That may or may not be approving the merger-- honestly I'm skeptical that going from 4 legacy carriers to 3 is good for the consumer (and face it, US is way more of a legacy than a LCC) but I'm not a financial analyst so I don't know. I do know that corporations that strong-arm their way past any oversight or regulations that they don't like are already way too common, and are usually putting profit ahead of the consumer's best interest. If the DOJ won't budge and US and AA have to eat the costs of reprinting planes or reconfiguring gates, that's their own fault and shouldn't be the court's concern. I would assume that these costs were also identified as possible risks, and accepted, although I'm sure that's not going to stop some high-powered attorney from pleading that the cost of reprinting the planes will be an unfair financial burden.

As to the executives, not a one of those guys walked away without a nice fat severance package, cry me a river, neither airline is going to have a hard time filling those slots if the DOJ won't budge.

As to the US Airways headquarters, it sounds like US leases that space, and that they're locked into the lease till 2016. http://www.bizjournals.com/phoenix/n....html?page=all. So they got a new landlord (and US still owns 25% of the building). A new landlord who would be unlikely to refuse to keep them on as a tenant after the lease expires, given how much vacant commercial real estate there is on the market, not just in Tempe but pretty much anywhere.

It will be really interesting to see how this ends up, but I sincerely hope the deciding factors are more about what is best for the consumer and not what's best for a massive REIT, or a bunch of executives with multi-million-dollar severance packages.
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Old Aug 26, 13, 5:51 pm
  #1566  
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Originally Posted by Superguy View Post
Yes, AS, B6, F9, HA, VX, and others are having a very difficult time surviving and "lasting long" against the giants.
AS positions themselves to avoid competition with the giants on most of their routes...
(Other than AS, these airlines don't have too much of my business, anyways, due to bad FFPs and, with the exception of HA, fly internationally, and, with HA, I would rather take foreign carriers TPAC. I am not American, for the record.)
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Old Aug 26, 13, 6:00 pm
  #1567  
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If the merger was unlikely with the DoJ getting involved, it may now be even less likely:

Originally Posted by spin88 View Post
was just going to post this.... I note the comments in the letter accompanying it discussed herein:

American Airlines Profit Soars | The Street

Full letter and results are here: AMR earns 292 Million in July alone - Dallasnews.com

Its notable that AAs revenue grew so much, and that AA would release a single month's results like this is clearly tactical by Horton and CO.

Does not sound like Tom Horton is planning on expending any deadlines...
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Old Aug 26, 13, 6:56 pm
  #1568  
 
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Originally Posted by AA_EXP09 View Post
AS positions themselves to avoid competition with the giants on most of their routes...
(Other than AS, these airlines don't have too much of my business, anyways, due to bad FFPs and, with the exception of HA, fly internationally, and, with HA, I would rather take foreign carriers TPAC. I am not American, for the record.)
AS is probably the best run airline in the US today, but ironically, if the other domestic airlines ran the same business model the consumer would suffer. AS sticks largely to a regional footprint, running profitable routes through larger destinations (other than within Alaska, where they do run service to a lot of remote places). Basically, they don't strive to get any passenger from anywhere to anywhere else. But if every other domestic carrier operated the same way, we'd have a bunch of regional fiefdoms.
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Old Aug 26, 13, 7:40 pm
  #1569  
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Originally Posted by serfty View Post
If the merger was unlikely with the DoJ getting involved, it may now be even less likely:
Current profits don't mean anything. Their margins are still razor thing.
This is about long term viability. Horton wants this merger just as bad as everyone else. He's getting 20 million from it.

Other than a few know it alls on this website there isn't anyone in this industry or wall street that DON"T think this merger is going to happen. The doj's case has been picked apart left and right the way they us the HHI the way they change the metric to "connections" and not direct flights. Then they bring out some e-mail from years ago that are supposed to show something that isn't there. There is a reason why aa/us are charging forward with a trial. The doj is just trying to wait out the clock.

The us/aa merger makes the most sense out of the past 3 airline mergers. The rout networks compliment each other the best and they have least overlap. I'm sure the judge will take this all into account. UA/CO was probably one of the worst mergers.

I still think UA and US would have been the best for UA.

Last edited by Kootur; Aug 26, 13 at 7:59 pm
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Old Aug 26, 13, 8:11 pm
  #1570  
 
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Originally Posted by CenterWaters View Post
especially considering that almost all AA and US frequent flyers were overjoyed
about the AA/US merger! The court will have to take that into consideration.
I have to believe this was intended as sarcasm. Maybe US frequent flyers are overjoyed at the prospects of a merger as their program is rather uncompetitive (except perhaps for Star Alliance awards that would disappear). I would think all AA frequent flyers should be quite scared at the reduction in benefits expected if Doug Parker and team take over.
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Old Aug 26, 13, 8:19 pm
  #1571  
 
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Originally Posted by Kootur View Post
Other than a few know it alls on this website there isn't anyone in this industry or wall street that DON"T think this merger is going to happen.
You and others have mentioned this in this thread. Again, this statement has absolutely zero meaning if you cannot provide a link to reference this. What wall street and airline industry insiders have said that the airlines will win their case against the DoJ? If there are so many experts in this field who have expressed this opinion, it should be easy to cite your source.

If you're going to make statements like this, please back it up citing specific references for everyone to read. Otherwise, your opinion on this has as much meaning as any random anonymous internet person.
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Old Aug 26, 13, 8:29 pm
  #1572  
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Originally Posted by GNRMatt View Post
If you're going to make statements like this, please back it up citing specific references for everyone to read. Otherwise, your opinion on this has as much meaning as any random anonymous internet person.
25 posts over a few days, all on single topic he appears to have signed up to post on (even if it's split between two threads) says he's got less credibility than a mere random internet person.

Indeed, whether he's got a real agenda, or is just someone frustrated blowing off steam in such a way as to appear to have one, I think he's pretty well blown any credibility. JMO, of course.
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Old Aug 26, 13, 8:49 pm
  #1573  
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Originally Posted by Kootur View Post
Current profits don't mean anything. Their margins are still razor thing. ...
American earned $135 million in July of last year after reorganization costs. The airline posted $1.94 billion in passenger revenue last month versus $1.81 billion a year prior, while labor costs fell to $523 million from $597 million in July 2012.
~7% profit on revenue is hardly "razor thing".
Originally Posted by Kootur View Post
...
This is about long term viability. Horton wants this merger just as bad as everyone else. He's getting 20 million from it. ...
I believe the BK Judge scrapped that payment months ago.
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Old Aug 26, 13, 8:52 pm
  #1574  
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Originally Posted by serfty View Post
~7% profit on revenue is hardly "razor thing".I believe the BK Judge scrapped that payment months ago.
What about for all year? That is the endgame.
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Old Aug 26, 13, 8:53 pm
  #1575  
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Originally Posted by serfty View Post
~7% profit on revenue is hardly "razor thing".I believe the BK Judge scrapped that payment months ago.
I believe it was given the ok during the last por hearing. Lane meets with AA on the 29th to hear the last arguments before he approves the por.
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