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USA-2005 9 MTHS
USA-2005 INTNL 9 MTHS
USA-2006-WLD TOP RPK
USA-2009-12 3Q STATS
USA-2009-12 CAPT CHESLEY SULLENBERGER AWARD
USA-2010-01 AIRBUS DELAYS
USA-2011-01-2010-WORLD TOP TRAFFIC
USA-2013-01 - UPDATE-A
USA-2013-01 - UPDATE-B
USA-2013-02 - AMERICAN AIRLINES MERGER
USA-PAPERLESS TRAVEL-A - 2011-12
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USA-TAIL LOGO - 2003-09
FOUNDED AND STARTED OPERATIONS IN 1939. DOMESTIC & INTERNATIONAL, SCHEDULED, PASSENGER & CARGO, JET AIRPLANE SERVICES.
4000 EAST SKY HARBOR BOULEVARD
SKY HARBOR INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT
PHOENIX, ARIZONA 85034, USA
USA (United States of America) was established in 1776, it covers an area of 9,363,123 sq km, its population is 280 million, its capital city is Washington DC, and its official language is English.
August 1995: CONTINENTAL AIRLINES (CAL) OWNS 17.7%, MESA 7.6%, TEXAS PACIFIC GROUP (TPG) PARTNERS 43.1%. IT IS THE 9TH LARGEST USA CARRIER. SERVICES TO >90 DESTINATIONS, IN 36 STATES, IN THE USA, AS WELL AS MEXICO, AND CANADA.
SEPTEMBER 1995: DOING FIELD TEST THROUGH MARCH 1996 OF HONEYWELL COMPUTING DEVICES INTERNATIONAL (CDII), OF AIRLINE MAINTENANCE & OPERATIONS SUPPORT SYSTEM (AMOSS) = FAULT ISOLATION, & DIAGNOSTIC INTEGRATION, OF AIRPLANES, AND GROUND SUPPORT.
4 OF 14 757'S ARE EXTENDED TWIN-ENGINE OPERATIONS (ETOPS) EQUIPPED.
DECEMBER 1995: TO TRANSFER HEAVY MAINTENANCE TO TRAMCO (BFG) & CUT -50% MAINTENANCE TECHNICIANS (MT) EMPLOYEES = -500 (MT), LEAVING 470 (TO SAVE $35 MILLION OVER 5 YEARS).
3 737-300'S (CFM56-3-B2), EX-US AIRWAYS (USA).
JANUARY 1996: 4TH QUARTER = +$6 MILLION (+$6.6 MILLION) (NET PROFIT): +14.1% (RPM) TRAFFIC, +6.4% (ASM) CAPACITY, 66.6% LF LOAD FACTOR (+4.4). 1995 = +$55.8 MILLION (+$62.2 MILLION): +8.8% (RPM), 77.5% (ASM), 68.5% LF.
757'S TO AMERICAN AIRLINES (AAL) ALLIANCE FOR MODIFICATIONS (AIRFRAME & THRUST REVERSERS).
FEBRUARY 1996: 2 A320'S (V2500) (448; 461), EX-LACSA (LAC).
MAY 1996: TO PHILADELPHIA & BOSTON. ALSO TO LAS VEGAS, SEATTLE AND ANCHORAGE (A320, 12F, 138Y).
RECORD 26,696 HOURS OF OPERATIONS ON (RB211-535E4) ENGINE ON 757. 1 A320-200 (V2500-A1), EX-(MID).
JUNE 1996: TOM DERIEG, SENIOR VP OERATIONS RESIGNS. RICHARD GOODMANSON, EXECUTIVE VP & COO, 48 YEARS OLD AUSTRALIAN, TO BECOME PRESIDENT & CEO WHEN HE GETS HIS CITIZENSHIP. GOODMANSON WAS SENIOR VP OPERATIONS OF FRITO-LAY, DALLAS, TEXAS. BILL FRANKE WILL ACT AS CHAIRMAN, PRESIDENT & CEO, UNTIL THEN.
DEDICATED A 757 TO ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS NEW BASEBALL TEAM, INCLUDING NEW LIVERY.
TO ACAPULCO, CLEVELAND, COLUMBUS TO LOS ANGELES (LAX), SEATTLE (SEA) TO SANTA ANA, & MIAMI (MIA) (november 1996). TO ADD 8 NEW CITIES BY the END OF 1996. TO SAN ANTONIO & LAS VEGAS HUB TO SEATTLE (SEA) & ANCHORAGE.
1 A320 (304) (V2500), EX-MIDWAY (MID).
SEPTEMBER 1996: AN (FAA) AUDIT TEAM OF 17 INSPECTORS SPENT 3 WEEKS AND FOUND SERIOUS STAFFING SHORTAGES, PARTICULARLY IN THE QUALITY ASSURANCE (QA) AREA. THE (FAA) STATED AMERICA WEST (AMW) NEEDS TO STRENGTHEN ITS MAINTENANCE PROGRAM & RECORD KEEPING.
AS USA'S 9TH LARGEST CARRIER, AMERICA WEST AIRLINES (AMW) SERVES >90 DESTINATIONS IN USA, CANADA & MEXICO. LAS VEGAS TO SAN JOSE AND COLUMBUS, OHIO, & TO FORT MEYERS, FLORIDA. TO DETROIT, BOSTON, PHILADELPHIA, MIAMI, AND ACAPULCO.
RON ARAMINI, SENIOR VP OPERATIONS, EX-PRESIDENT & CEO ALLEGHENY AIRLINES, & VP TECHNICAL SERVICES AT CONTINENTAL (CAL). CANDACE ECKERT, MANAGER CONTRACTS & WARRANTIES, EX-(MDC).
10,122 EMPLOYEES (INCLUDING 1,200 FLIGHT CREW (FC).
OCTOBER 1996: 3RD QUARTER = -$46 MILLION (NET LOSS): +11.5% (RPM) PASSENGER TRAFFIC, +10.9% (ASM) CAPACITY, +4.6% PASSENGERS (PAX) (4.672 MILLION), 71.8% LF LOAD FACTOR (+.4).
+34 A319/A320/A321: (12 A320) 10 A319 OR A321, REPLACES /90 ORDERS FOR 24 A320'S.
NOVEMBER 1996: 1 A320-200 (V2500), EX-REGIONAIR (RAE) (238). 1 A320-20O (271) (IAE V2500), EX-BALKAN BULGARIAN (BUL), ORIX LEASED.
JANUARY 1997: AMERICA WEST AIRLINES (AMW) IS NOW PART OF (AMW) HOLDING CORPORATION, DELAWARE.
OPENS 2 OVERNIGHT MAINTENANCE SHOPS AT JOHN WAYNE AIRPORT, ORANGE COUNTY, & COLUMBUS, OHIO (HUB) FOR ROUTINE MAINTENANCE ON 4/6 AIRPLANES EACH NIGHT.
FRANK TUCCI, VP MAINTENANCE & ENGINEERING EX-ALLEGHENY & CONTINENTAL AIRLINES (CAL), REPLACES LARRY POOL, WHO RETIRED.
1996 AMW HOLDINGS = +$48.7 MILLION, OR +$8.5 MILLION AFTER SPECIAL CHARGE: 15.28 BILLION (RPM) (#25 HIGHEST IN WORLD) (+15%), +11.3% (ASM), 70.8% LF LOAD FACTOR (+2.3), 18.17 MILLION PASSENGERS (PAX) (+7.9%). 11,000 EMPLOYEES.
LOOKING FOR 737-200 FOR 2ND SPARE AIRPLANE.
FEBRUARY 1997: JOHN WADE, SENIOR DIRECTOR MAINTENANCE RESIGNS. JIM BICKNELL, DIRECTOR MAINTENANCE CONTROL. TERRY RADTKE, MANAGER POWER PLANT ENGINEERING. BILL HUEY, MANAGER QUALITY ASSURANCE/QUALITY CONTROL & TRAINING. JEFF OWEN, MANAGER LINE MAINTENANCE.
AIR CANADA (ACN) 5 YEAR MAINTENANCE CONTRACT FOR AMERICA WEST AIRLINES (AMW)'S 26 A320'S, AT WINNIPEG MAINTENANCE BASE.
MAY 1997: "BEST US SHORT-HAUL OPERATOR" AWARD FROM FREQUENT FLYER SURVEY BY J D POWERS & ASSOCIATES.
JUNE 1997: 2ND NONSTOP TO BOSTON IN SEPTEMBER 1997.
JULY 1997: TO WASHINGTON DULLES (A320, 12F, 138Y). TO BALTIMORE & PHILADELPHIA NONSTOPS (A320). SEASONAL OPERATIONS TO PALM SPRINGS (737, 8F, 124Y).
1ST 6 MONTHS = +10.5% RPM (TRAFFIC), +12.9% ASM (CAPACITY), 69.8% LF (LOAD FACTOR) (-1.5), 9.26M PASSENGERS (PAX) (+4.39%). 2ND Q = +$23M (-19%) DUE TO +10% TICKET TAX, -2.7% RPM, +9% ASM, +29% MAINTENANCE COSTS (+22.7% FOR 1ST 6 MONTHS).
1 737-3YOQC (CFM56-3B1) (23499), LEASED, EX-ALOHA AIRLINES (ALO).
AUGUST 1997: LOUIS COUTO, VP INFORMATION SYSTEMS, 49 YEAR OLD. DAVID HUNTZINGER, VP CORPORATE SAFETY, EX-BOEING.
SEPTEMBER 1997: 1 737-3YOQC (23500), LEASED. 2ND 737-300QC (23500), (GUI) LEASED. RESTRUCTURES AND EXPANDS AIRBUS ORDER INTO $1.4B 34 NARROWBODIES OVER 3 YEARS: 22/12 A319'S, 12/12 A320 & /40 OPTIONS A319/A320/A321'S. NOW OPERATES 26 A320'S.
OCTOBER 1997: 11,000 EMPLOYEES. 10,691 (3RD QUARTER).
CLIFF TANNER, DIRECTOR MAINTENANCE CONTROL, REPLACES JIM BICKNELL, MANAGER AIRCRAFT PROCUREMENT.
1ST 9 MONTHS: 19.84B RPM (22ND HIGHEST IN WORLD) (+10.4%), +11.8% ASM; 70.5% LF (-1.4). 3RD Q (AMW) GROUP = +$17.9M.
NONSTOPS FROM COLUMBUS, OHIO, HUB TO MIAMI (MIA) & FORT MYERS, FLORIDA. TO PALM SPRINGS, FROM PHOENIX.
NOVEMBER 1997: PLANS $37M, 225,000 SQ FT, CORPORATE HQ COMPLEX IN TEMPE, ARIZONA (NEAR SKY HARBOR) FOR 1ST Q 1999 COMPLETION.
DECEMBER 1997: JACK SCHREIMAN, MANAGER LAS VEGAS LINE MAINTENANCE, EX-CONTINENTAL AIRLINES (CAL).
NONSTOP TO ANCHORAGE (A320, 12 FIRST (F), 138 ECONOMY (Y).
JANUARY 1998: 4TH Q = +$20.1M (+66%) RECORD! 4TH Q AVERAGE STAGE LENGTH = 797 MILES (758 MILES), TO BETTER SERVE MAJOR BUSINESS MARKETS/MAKES SENSE FOR THE AIRLINE, HOWEVER, LONGER STAGE LENGTH MAKE IT LESS COMPETITIVE THAN (SWA). 1997 = +$75M RECORD! (X9): 16.19B RPM (15,321), (+5.7%), +9% ASM, 68.7% LF (-2.2); 18.32M PAX (18.18M), STAGE LENGTH 779 MILES (732 MILES). USA MARKET SHARE 1997 = 9TH 2.67% RPM, 11TH LF.
JOHN FLITTON, SENIOR DIRECTOR CONTRACTS (REPAIR, OVERHAUL OF AIRCRAFT COMPONENTS).
2 737-275'S (391-20958; 395-20959) RETURNED TO CANADIAN INTERNATIONAL (CDI). 1 737-300 (24060) EX-PHILIPPINE AIRLINES (PAL), KG AIRCRAFT LEASED. +3 A320'S (762; 770; 803), SALE (SIL) LEASED.
FEBRUARY 1998: 1 A320-200 (V2527-A5) DELIVERY. +3 ORDERS A320-200 (V2527-A5).
MARCH 1998: 757 "C" CHECKS BY UNITED AIRLINES (UAL) AT INDIANAPOLIS.
APRIL 1998: 11,000 EMPLOYEES.
AMERICA WEST AIRLINES (AMW) HOLDINGS 1ST Q = +$25.1M (+80.1%) (+$13.9M) RECORD!: +.95% RPM, -2.8% ASM, $55.18M MAINTENANCE = 12.94% OF TOTAL OPERATIONS EXPENSES.
757-2S7 (23221 - "CITY OF PHOENIX") PAINTED IN "ARIZONA STATE" THEME, COLOR SCHEME.
MAY 1998: GARY HAMMES, SENIOR DIRECTOR MAINTENANCE. GARY HAMMES RESIGNED AFTER 2 WEEKS. OSCAR CULP, SENIOR DIRECTOR ENGINEERING & QUALITY ASSURANCE RETIRED.
"FREQUENT FLYER" MAGAZINE, AWARDS AMERICA WEST AIRLINES (AMW) "BEST SHORT-HAUL AIRLINE."
NEW NONSTOP TO IXTAPA, ZIHUATANEJO, MEXICO (737, 8F, 124Y). CODE SHARE WITH (EVA) AIR TO TAIPEI, VIA LOS ANGELES (LAX), SAN FRANCISCO (SFO), AND LAS VEGAS.
737-3B7 (1427-23384), GECAS (GEH) LEASED, EX-WESTERN PACIFIC (WPA).
JUNE 1998: "C" CHECK MAINTENANCE CONTRACT, TO UNITED AIRLINES (UAL), AT INDIANAPOLIS, FOR 13 757'S.
JULY 1998: 1ST 6 MONTHS = 7.921B RPM (-2.5%), +2.5% ASM, 66.4% LF (-3.4), 8.8M PAX (-5.1%); +$66.6M FUEL COSTS -20%. 2ND Q = +$41.1M (+80%) RECORD!
AMERICA WEST AIRLINES (AMW) HAS $2.5M (FAA) FINE TO PAY OF $5M CIVIL PENALTY FOR 17 A320'S OVERDUE FOR SIGNIFICANT STRUCTURAL INSPECTIONS. (FAA) REQUIRES (AMW) TO PROVIDE AN AUTONOMOUS QUALITY ASSURANCE ORGANIZATION, INDEPENDENT FROM QUALITY CONTROL, REPORTING TO CEO.
1997 TOP WORLD AIRLINES COMPARISONS:
RPK (TRAFFIC) (B): 16 TWA 41; 17 KAL 40; 18 CAT 39; 19 ACN 37; 20 ALI 36; 21 TII 31; 22 MAS 29; 23 IBE 28; 24 SWS 28; 25 AMW 26; 26 CDI 25.8.
PASSENGERS (PAX) (M): 10 BAB 34; 11 JAL 32; 12 KAL 26; 13 ALI 25; 14 TWA 24; 15 SAS 21; 16 QAN 19; 17 AMW 18; 18 JAS 17; 19 IBE 15.
1 737-3U3 (28740), EX-GARUDA INDONESIA (GIA), (GEH) LEASED.
AUGUST 1998: 15TH ANNIVERSARY! ONLY AIRLINE CERTIFIED BY FEDERAL GOVERNMENT AFTER DEREGULATION TO BECOME A MAJOR CARRIER - NOW 9TH LARGEST IN USA.
SEPTEMBER 1998: KENT HOLLINGER, VP QUALITY ASSURANCE & ENGINEERING, EX-NORTHWEST AIRLINES (NWA).
OCTOBER 1998: ALLIANCE WITH MESA AIRLINES OPERATING AS AMERICA WEST EXPRESS - NEW NONSTOP TO GUNNISON, COLORADO, SKI RESORT (DHC-8, 37 PAX).
PLANS TO BRING MAINTENANCE WORK BACK IN-HOUSE.
AMERICA WEST AIRLINES (AMW) HOLDINGS 3RD Q = +$21.9M (+22%) (+$17.9M) RECORD! -17.5% FUEL COSTS; MAINTENANCE COSTS = $63.63M (14.21% OPERATING EXPENSES). 1ST 9 MONTHS = +$88.4M (+61%) RECORD! +3% RPM, +1% ASM, 71.9% LF (+1.4).
12 MONTHS END SEPTEMBER 1998 USA AIRLINES PASSENGER TRAFFIC (RPM) B:
1 UAL 123.2; 2 AAL 108.3; 3 DAL 102.6; 4 NWA 67.6; 5 CAL 49.7; 6 USA 41.1; 7 SWA 29.7; 8 TWA 25.0; 9 AMW 16.2; 10 ASA 11.0.
737-300, EX-WESTERN PACIFIC (WPA), BABCOCK & BROWN (BBB) LEASED. 1ST A319 DELIVERY (1ST NEW TYPE AIRPLANE SINCE 1991). 4TH & 5TH A320'S (V2500) (856; 866), SALE (SIL) 10 YEAR LEASED. A320 (856) WAS ORIGINALLY DESTINED FOR SAEAGA (SGA).
DECEMBER 1998: TO MANZANILLO. CODE SHARE WITH EVA AIR (EVA) FROM HUBS PHOENIX & LAS VEGAS THROUGH LOS ANGELES (LAX) & SAN FRANCISCO (SFO) TO TAIPEI/KAOHSIUNG.
2 A319-132'S (924; 931) DELIVERIES. PAINTS 757-2G7 (244-24233, N908AW) IN ARIZONA CARDINALS (AMERICAN FOOTBALL) COLORS.
JANUARY 1999: 4TH Q = +$20.2M (+.3%). 1998 = +$108.6M (+45%): -$49M FUEL, $183M MAINTENANCE COSTS (+24.7%): 16.36B RPM (16.2B); 24.3B ASM (23.57B); 67.3% (-1.5); 17.85M PAX (-2.6%); 1.74B FTM (+.3%).
IN MARCH 1999, NONSTOPS TO MIDLAND/ODESSA (CANADAIR RJ, 50 PAX) & TO EL PASO. IN APRIL 1999, NONSTOPS TO SAN LUIS OBISPO, & CARLSBAD/OCEANSIDE IN (DH DASH 8, 37 PAX).
FEBRUARY 1999: CURT MAUGHAN, MANAGER QUALITY ASSURANCE & MAINTENANCE TRAINING, EX-NORTHWEST AIRLINES (NWA). GARY MARTIN, DIRECTOR ENGINEERING.
A320-232 (953, N652AW) DELIVERY. CANCELS 2 ORDERS A320'S (V2500) TO NOW 17 A320'S & 19 A319'S ORDERS.
MARCH 1999: DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION (DOT) AWARDS AMERICA WEST AIRLINES (AMW) "BEST BAGGAGE HANDLER AIRLINE" FOR 2ND CONSECUTIVE YEAR, OF 10 MAJOR CARRIERS.
FOLLOWING RECORD 1998 PROFIT, WILL DISTRIBUTE $22.1M IN CASH INCENTIVE COMPENSATION & ANNUAL MERIT INCREASES TO EMPLOYEES.
32ND A320 DELIVERY.
APRIL 1999: IN AUGUST 1999, NONSTOP TO TAMPA (A320, 150 PAX).
1ST Q = +$26M (+3.2%) (+$25M) RECORD! (AMW) HOLDINGS: +10.4% RPM, +7.7% ASM, 63.7% LF (+1.5).
WILLIAM FRANKE, CHAIRMAN & CEO OF AMERICA WEST HOLDINGS, REASSUMES PRESIDENT & CEO OF (AMW), REPLACING RICHARD GOODMANSON, WHO LEFT THE COMPANY.
MAY 1999: 11,455 EMPLOYEES.
SPLITS INTO CORPORATE & OPERATIONS GROUPS WITH DOUG PARKER, EXECUTIVE VP CORPORATE INCLUDING INFORMMATION SYSTEMS, & GIBERT MOOK, EXECUTIVE VP & COO, HEADING FLIGHT OPERATIONS, MAINTENANCE & ENGINEERING, EX-FEDEX (FED). RON ARAMINI, SENIOR VP OPERATIONS.
(DOT) OK'S CODE SHARE WITH AIR CHINA (BEJ) TO BEIJING FROM LOS ANGELES (LAX) & SAN FRANCISCO (SFO), AND 12 USA POINTS.
A320-232 (1003, N653AW) DELIVERY.
JUNE 1999: 1998 TOP WORLD AIRLINES - PASSENGER TRAFFIC (RPM) (B):
21 IBE 20.19; 22 KAL 19.95; 23 MAS 18.25; 24 SWS 17.43; 25 CDI 16.70; 26 AMW 16.36; 27. VAR 16.25; 28. SAS 12.98; 29. CHI 12.64; 30. VAA 12.27.
JULY 1999: 1ST 6 MONTHS = +7.3% (RPM), +7.2% (ASM), 66.5% LF (+.1) 27.7M PAX (+8.3%). AMERICA WEST AIRLINES (AMW) HOLDINGS 2ND Q = +$42.2M (+$41.4M) (+2%) RECORD!: +4% (RPM) AVERAGE STAGE LENGTH 858 (819) (+4.8%), FUEL +11%.
737-375 (1388-23707, N336AW), (GEH) LEASED. A319-132 (1056, N806AW) DELIVERY.
AUGUST 1999: SOLD 5 737-300'S (23776; 23777; 23778; 23779; 23780) & 1 757-200 (RB211-535E4) (24522) TO BOULLIOUN (BOU) & LEASED BACK FOR 66 MONTHS. 2 A319 (1043; 1049), GECAS (GEH) LEASED. 1 A319-132 (1064, N807AW) & A320-232 (1050, N654AW) DELIVERIES.
SEPTEMBER 1999: DR DAVID HUNTZINGER, VP SAFETY, EX-BOEING (TBC), RESIGNS.
NONSTOP TO WASHINGTON NATIONAL. ALSO LAS VEGAS - WASHINGTON NATIONAL.
2 ORDERS (4/00) A319'S, (ILF) LEASED & 1 ORDER (NOVEMBER 1999) A320, (ILF) LEASED (1110) 12 YEARS. A319-132 (1088, N808AW) AND A320-232 (1075, N655AW) DELIVERIES.
OCTOBER 1999: RICK OEHME, VP BASE MAINTENANCE. PATRICK SAKOLE, VP SAFETY.
2ND Q MAINTENANCE COSTS $69.19M (14.29% DOC). (AMW) HOLDINGS 3RD Q = +$22.2M (+1.6%) (+$21.9M).
A320-232'S (1079, N656AW; 1083, N657AW) & A319-132 (1111, N809AW) DELIVERIES. 15 ORDERS (8/00) A318'S. 12 ORDERS (8/00) A320'S. 50 OPTIONS A320'S FAMILY.
NOVEMBER 1999: 12,430 EMPLOYEES.
KENT HOLLINGER, VP QUALITY ASSURANCE & ENGINEERING, RESIGNS. FRANK TUCCI, VP MAINTENANCE RESIGNS.
1 A320 (V2500) (527), EX-SAETA (SAE), (ILF) 87 MONTH LEASED.
DECEMBER 1999: IN MARCH 2000, TO BOISE, IDAHO (737-300) & SPOKANE.
GARY MARTIN, SENIOR DIRECTOR MAINTENANCE ENGINEERING & RELIABILITY. ART FISHBEIN, DIRECTOR QUALITY ASSURANCE, EX-EASTERN AIRLINES (EAL).
737-297 (22630) RETURNED TO (ACG), & 737-2M8 (21955) RETURNED TO (TCI).
JANUARY 2000: 4TH Q = +$29M (+43.8%) (+$20.2M): +21.8% FUEL COSTS; MAINTENANCE COSTS = +$80.92M (15.53% DOC): +6.3% RPM; AVERAGE STAGE LENGTH 870 MILES (+3.6%) (840 MILES). 1999 = +$119.4M (+$108.6M): 17.70B RPM (+8.1%), +6.6% ASM, 68.3% LF (+.9). USA TRAFFIC MARKET SHARE = 2.9% 9TH (2.8%).
IN APRIL 2000, NONSTOP TO HARTFORD, CONNECTICUT (A319).
737-112 (19771) AND 737-2A6 (20194) PARTED OUT.
FEBRUARY 2000: THE DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION (DOT) OK'S CODE SHARE WITH CONTINENTAL AIRLINES (CAL), NEWARK TO AMSTERDAM, BELGIUM, ZURICH, BIRMINGHAM UK, MANCHESTER UK, GLASGOW, DUSSELDORF, & FRANKFURT. IN MARCH 2000, NONSTOPS TO BOISE & SPOKANE. IN MAY 2000, NONSTOP TO NEW ORLEANS (737-300).
MOVING CLOSER TO ITS 10% GROWTH FOR 2000.
12,000 EMPLOYEES. 1,800 NON-UNION EMPLOYEES, RECEIVE BONUSES OF 11.8% OF 1999 EARNINGS.
A319-132 (1178, N812AW) DELIVERY. 1 A320 (V2500) (543), EX-CONSTELLATION (COT), (ILF) 87 MONTH LEASED. 1 A320-232 (1166) GECAS (GEH) LEASED.
MARCH 2000: SELECTS JOUVE DATA MANAGEMENT, & PROTOTYPE, TO INTEGRATE ENGINEERING ORDERS (EO'S) MODIFICATIONS, INTO 737/757/A319/A320 MAINTENANCE MANUALS, VIA aviationzone.net.
IN JUNE 2000, HARTFORD - COLUMBUS/LAS VEGAS.
POKO HOLLOWAY, DIRECTOR LINE MAINTENANCE RESIGNS. GARY CLEMMER, SENIOR DIRECTOR LINE MAINTENANCE, EX-NORTHWEST AIRLINES (NWA). STEVE SYLVESTER, DIRECTOR SYSTEM LINE MAINTENANCE, EX-(USAF). DAVID SLONIN, VP LINE MAINTENANCE. SKIP MAIORANA, DIRECTOR HEAVY MAINTENANCE.
APRIL 2000: TO MANZANILLO.
1ST Q = +$14.6M (-43.6%) (+$25.9M): +69% FUEL COSTS, INCLUDING +$15.5M PRE-TAX FROM SALE OF EQUITY IN priceline.com.
110,067 EMPLOYEES. HUB: LAS VEGAS.
RAY HACKEY, SENIOR MANAGER, MAINTENANCE & ENGINEERING, AMERICA WEST TECHNOLOGIES (AWT).
1 ORDER (4/01) A319 (V2524), (ILF) 12 YEAR LEASED.
MAY 2000: DOUGLAS PARKER, PRESIDENT. WILLIAM FRANKE, CHAIRMAN & CEO.
JUNE 2000: THE DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION (DOT) OK'S NEWARK - SHANNON/DUBLIN, WHICH (AMW) PLANS TO OPERATE UNDER CODE SHARE WITH CONTINENTAL AIRLINES (CAL).
11,357 EMPLOYEES (INCLUDING 1,574 FLIGHT CREW (FC) 2,179 CABIN ATTENDANTS (CA), & 1,363 MAINTENANCE TECHNICIANS (MT)).
A320-232 (1196, N604AW) DELIVERY. A320-232 (1234, N660AW) DELIVERY.
JULY 2000: EXTENSIVE SAFETY AUDIT OF ALASKA AIRLINES (ASA), BEING FOLLOWED BY SAME OF (UAL), (AMW), (CAL), (DAL), (NWA), (TWA), (AAL), (SWA), & (USA).
2ND Q = +$33.5M (-20.7%) (+$43.2M), $83.2M FUEL COSTS (+56.7%).
1999 TOP WORLD AIRLINES COMPARISONS:
TRAFFIC RPK (B): 18 ACN 39; 19 TII 38.5; 20 ALI 36.7; 21 KAL 36.7; 22 IBE 35.4; 23 SWS 34.7; 24 MAS 32.2; 25 AMW 28.5.
NET PROFIT ($M): 14 USA 273; 15 KAL 226; 16 SAS 217; 17 AMW 201; 18 ASA 196; 19 JAL 187; 20 SWS 171; 21 IBE 154; 22 ACN 147.
737-2M8, RETURNED TO UNICAPITAL (UAG), LEASED TO WESTJET (WJI). 1 A319-112 (1281, N814AW) DELIVERY.
AUGUST 2000: JOSEPH BEERY, VP BUSINESS TECHNOLOGY DELIVERY.
JOINS E-COMMERCE VENTURE, CALLED "aeroexchange" FOR AIRPLANE PARTS, MAINTENANCE SERVICES, & GENERAL SUPPLIES WITH 12 AIRLINES: (CAT); (DLH); (SIA); (FED); (NWA); (ACN); (ANA); (SAS); (KLM); (AUL); & (ANZ).
1999 PRE-TAX = +$200.97M (+184.56M): 28.5B RPK (+8.2%); 68.4% LF; 18.7M PAX (+5.1%); 11,300 EMPLOYEES (+8.1%).
(FAA) AUDIT FOUND SERIOUS SHORTCOMINGS IN (AMW)'S MAINTENANCE RECORD-KEEPING, & ASKED (AMW) TO OVERHAUL SEVERAL, KEY, MAINTENANCE PROGRAMS, INCLUDING CONTINUOUS ANALYSIS & SURVEILLANCE SYSTEM (CASS) EFFORTS. FOLLOWING (FAA) AUDIT, (AMW) REMOVES 2 737'S & 2 A320'S FROM SCHEDULED SERVICE, FOR USE AS SPARE AIRPLANES, AND ADDS MAINTENANCE LINES FOR AIRBUS (EDS), AT COLUMBUS, AND BOEING AIRPLANES.
1 A320-232 (1274, N662AW) DELIVERY. 1 A320-232 (1284, N661AW) DELIVERY.
SEPTEMBER 2000: TO GUADALAJARA (CRJ, 50 PAX, DAILY NONSTOP).
1999 TOP USA AIRLINES FROM INTERNET REVENUE (M):
1 SWA 877; 2 DAL 671; 3 UA 505; 4 USA 450; 5 AAL 416; 6 CAL 408; 7 NWA 402; 8 AMW 223; 9 ASA 143; 10 TWA 118.
OCTOBER 2000: GIL MOOK, EXECUTIVE VP, RESIGNS EFFECTIVE DECEMBER 2000. SHARON GREY, DIRECTOR QUALITY ASSURANCE. RAY BERG, MANAGER QUALITY ASSURANCE. GREG SCOTT, MANAGER POWER PLANT ENGINEERING, EX-PRATT & WHITNEY. JODY STOFLETH, MANAGER AIRCRAFT SERVICE ENGINEERING.
COLUMBUS - NEW YORK LAGUARDIA. LAS VEGAS TO WASHINGTON NATIONAL (DAILY NONSTOPS). COLUMBUS - LOS ANGELES (LAX).
5-YEAR MAINTENANCE CONTRACT FOR AMERICA WEST AIRLINES (AMW), 737'S "C" CHECKS, & MODIFICATIONS, TO CANADIAN (CDI).
3RD Q = +$1.3M: $98.6M FUEL COSTS (+63.9%).
1ST 6 MONTHS TOP WORLD AIRLINES - TRAFFIC (RPK) (B):
10 CAT 22.58; 11 TWA 21.26; 12 ACN 20.96; 13 KAL 19.47; 14 IBE 18.77; 15 AMW 15.02; 16 VAR 12.59; 17 SAS 11.16.
1 A319-132 (1350, N816AW) DELIVERY.
NOVEMBER 2000: COLUMBUS - FORT MYERS. 1N DECEMBER 2000, TO MANZANILLO AND PALM SPRINGS.
SIGNS CONTRACT FOR HONEYWELL'S, AIRCRAFT MAINTENANCE & OPERATIONS SUPPORT SYSTEM (AMOSS), TO HELP REDUCE DELAYS, AND IMPROVE EFFICIENCY, OF ITS AIRPLANE PROBLEM DIAGNOSIS. TO BE INSTALLED AT 9 STATIONS, INCLUDING PHOENIX, LAS VEGAS, AND COLUMBUS HUBS.
(AMW) HOLDINGS 3RD Q = +$1.3M (+22.28M) (-94.1%).
2 A319-132'S (1373, N817AW; 1375, N818AW) DELIVERIES.
DECEMBER 2000: HAL HEULE, SENIOR VP TECHNICAL OPERATIONS.
AMERICA WEST AIRLINES (AMW) BUYS OUT ALL CONTINENTAL AIRLINES (CAL) SHARES IN (AMW), FOR $10.8M.
2 A319-132 (1395, N819AW; 1397, N820AW), DELIVERIES.
TOP 20 WORLD AIRLINES 1ST 9 MONTHS - TRAFFIC (RPK) (B):
15 TII 31.26; 16 KAL 30.99; 17 IBE 30.21; 18 AMW 23.12; 19 VAA 22.08; 20 VAR 19.79.
JANUARY 2001: 4TH Q = -$43.56M (+$28.86M): 4.7B RPM (+3.8%); +5.1% ASM; 68.1% LF (-.9). 2000 = 19.1B RPM (+7.8%); +4.6% ASM; 70.4% LF (+2).
TOP WORLD AIRLINES 2000 - PASSENGER TRAFFIC (RPM) (B):
21 IBE 24.87; 22 MAS 23.58; 23 SWS 21.28; 24 AMW 19.10; 25 VAA 18.31; 26 VAR 16.33; 27 CHI 16.14; 28 SAS 14.07.
2 A319-112'S (1406, N821AW; 1410, N822AW), DELIVERIES.
MARCH 2001: IN 4/01, COLUMBUS - LOS ANGELES (LAX).
MOVES 737 "B" CHECK MAINTENANCE TO LAS VEGAS. 1 A320-232 (1419, N663AW) DELIVERY.
APRIL 2001: 13,370 EMPLOYEES.
KEN PRZESLICA, MANAGER AIRCRAFT INDUCTION.
1ST Q = -$12.8M: MAINTENANCE COSTS = $90.5M (+1.7%).
AS PART OF COST REDUCTION PLAN, WILL RETURN 5 737-300'S (23626; 23628; 23630; 23631; 23636) TO LESSOR IN 4Q 2001 & 1Q 2002. 1 A319-112 (1463, N823AW) DELIVERY.
MAY 2001: IN JUNE 2001, TO ANCHORAGE. IN AUGUST 2001, LAS VEGAS - CLEVELAND, OHIO (A319, DAILY).
1 A319-112 (1490, N824AW) DELIVERY.
JUNE 2001: JOHN RYAN, VP LINE MAINTENANCE. RON HARBERT, DIRECTOR LINE MAINTENANCE, EX-USAIR (USA).
1 A320-200 (453) RETURNED TO CIT AEROSPACE (TCI), LEASED TO TAM BOLIVIA (TSZ).
JUNE 2001: IN OCTOBER 2001, TO RALEIGH/DURHAM (A319/A320, 2/DAY).
1 A319-132 (1527, N825AW) DELIVERY.
JULY 2001: PROJECTS -$40 TO -$50M LOSSES FOR 2ND QUARTER, DUE TO CONTINUED WEAKNESS IN USA ECONOMY AND HIGH FUEL PRICES. 2ND Q = -$42.5M (+$33.5M); MAINTENANCE COSTS = $91.71M (+14.1%).
1ST 6 MONTHS USA MARKET SHARE (RPM)'S B, SHARE %):
1 UAL 61.5 (19.1%); 2 AAL 55.9 (17.4%); 3 DAL 51.2 (15.9%); 4 NWA 38.7 (12.1%); 5 CAL 32.2 (10.0%); 6 USA 24.9 (7.7%); 7 SWA 22.5 (7.0%); 8 TWA 12.1 (3.8%); 9 AMW 10.1 (3.1%); 10 ASA 6.2 (1.9%).
2 A319-132'S (1534, N826AW; 1547, N827AW) DELIVERIES.
AUGUST 2001: 2ND Q = -$43.3M. 12,187 EMPLOYEES.
AMW HOLDINGS DECIDES TO MAKE DOUG PARKER, CHAIRMAN, PRESIDENT & CEO, EFFECTIVE SEPTEMBER 2001. WILLIAM FRANKE, CEO PLANS TO RETIRE END OF 2002, AND RECOMMENDS THAT DOUG PARKER, PRESIDENT, TAKE OVER AS CEO, IN JANUARY 2003.
LAS VEGAS - HOUSTON. IN OCTOBER 2001, TO MANZANILLO.
737-33A (23626) RETURNED TO AMERICA WEST AIRLINES (AWW). 2 737-3YOQC'S (1242-23499; 1243-23500) RETURNED TO (GEF). 2 A319-132'S (1563, N829AW; 1565, N830AW) DELIVERIES.
SEPTEMBER 2001: PENNY STRONG, MANAGER AIRCRAFT RECORDS. JEFF MCCLELLAND, EXECUTIVE VP OPERATIONS, EX-NORTHWEST AIRLINES (NWA).
FOLLOWING THE 9/11 ISLAMIC, TERRORIST ATTACK ON NEW YORK'S WORLD TRADE CENTER (WTC) TOWERS AND THE PENTAGON, WHICH RESULTED IN THE GROUNDING OF THE USA AIRLINE FLEETS, AMERICA WEST AIRLINES (AMW) WILL CUT ITS (ASM)'S (CAPACITY) BY A MINIMUM OF -20%. WILL FURLOUGH -2,000 EMPLOYEES.
1 A319-132 (1576, N831AW) DELIVERY.
OCTOBER 2001: IN DECEMBER 2001 COLUMBUS, OHIO (HUB) TO ORLANDO (A320, 2/DAY NONSTOPS). TO DES MOINES. TO MANZANILLO. COLUMBUS - LOS ANGELES (LAX).
3RD Q = -$31.7M (+$1.3M), INCLUDING $60M FEDERAL LOAN GUARANTEE.
TOP WORLD AIRLINES 1ST 9 MONTHS - PASSENGER TRAFFIC (RPK) (B):
16 MAS 27.98; 17 ALI 27.92; 18 KAL 27.24; 19 AMW 24.20; 20 VAR 19.81; 21 CHI 19.7.
737-33A (23628) RETURNED TO AWAS (AWW). 737-2U9 (22575), 737-277 (22645) & 757-2S7 (23322) WFU AT GOODYEAR (TEMPORARY). PLANS TO DEFER 7 A319/A320 DELIVERIES FROM 2002. IN NEXT 15 MONTHS, WILL NOT RENEW LEASES ON 12 737-300'S & 3 A320'S.
NOVEMBER 2001: EULALIO MAYNES, MANAGER MAINTENANCE SAFETY.
737-33A (23636) RETURNED TO AWAS (AWW).
3RD QUARTER MAINTENANCE COSTS = $94.42M (+10.8%).
AIRPLANES DUE FOR HEAVY MAINTENANCE ARE GROUNDED: 2 737-200'S (N149AW; N178AW); 1 737-300 (N164AW); 1 757-200 (N902AW); & 2 A320'S (N622AW; N625AW). 2 A320-232'S (1621, N664AW; 1644, N665AW) DELIVERIES.
DECEMBER 2001: COLUMBUS - FORT MYERS. TO BOISE. COLUMBUS - ORLANDO (A320, 3/DAY).
12 MONTHS, END OF JUNE 2001, 3RD PARTY OUTSOURCED MAINTENANCE = $242M (82.1%).
737-2E3 (887-22792, N138AW) PARKED AT GOODYEAR. 2 737-33A'S (23630; 23631) RETURNED TO (AWW). A319-132 (1643, N832AW) DELIVERY.
JANUARY 2002: 4TH QUARTER = -$60.9M (-$41.7M). EXCLUDING NON-RECURRING ITEMS & FEDERAL GRANT = -$89.1M; MAINTENANCE COSTS = $82.3M (-3.1%). Group 2001 = -$148M (+$8M); (AMW) = -$148.4M (-$529K): 19.07B (RPM) (-.2%); -2.1% (ASM); 71.9% LF (+1.4) (RECORD!); 19.58M PAX (-1.9%); 42.2M (FTK) (-18%); 13,145 EMPLOYEES.
2001 INTERNET REVENUE = $250M (+46%) ($171M). IN 1/02, BROKE 1-DAY RECORD, WITH 7,750 E-TICKETS SOLD, FOR $1.65M!
IN 2/02, WILL RECALL 75 FURLOUGHED PILOTS (FC). HAS RECALLED 650 EMPLOYEES.
2001 TOP 50 WORLD AIRLINES - PASSENGER TRAFFIC B (RPM)
1 UAL 116.60; 2 AAL 106.15; 3 DAL 97.60; 4 NWA 73.11; 5 BAB 64.24; 6 AFA 59.54; 7 CAL 58.76; 8 DLH 56.76; 9 JAL 50.77; 10 USA 45.93; 11 SWA 44.50; 12 SIA 42.76; 13 QAN 42.14; 14 ACN 41.49; 15 KLM 35.76; 16 ANA 33.16; 17 CAT 27.81; 18 TII 27.43; 19 IBE 25.64; 20 KAL 23.73; 21 ALI 22.45; 22 MAS 22.29; 23 AMW 19.06; 24 VAA 17.65; 25 VAR 16.02; 26 CHI 16.00; 27 EAD 14.37; 28 SAS 14.26; 29 ANZ 13.54; 30 SAA 12.70; 31 SVA 12.56; 32 BEJ 12.39; 33 ASA 12.23; 34 JAS 10.06; 35 THY 9.35; 36 AMX 8.51; 37 PAL 8.36; 38 GIA 8.15; 39 CMA 7.99; 40 ELA 7.79; 41 GUL 7.65; 42 PIA 7.24; 43 AIN 7.10; 44 TAP 6.43; 45 EGP 5.53; 46 OLY 5.24; 47 AUL 5.06; 48 FIN 4.93; 49 IND 4.52; 50 CQT 4.51.
2 737-277 (22648; 22652) WFU. A320-231 (054, N622AW) DELIVERY. DEFERS DELIVERY OF 17 A320 FAMILY AIRPLANES FROM 2002 - 2003 TO 2004 - 2007. PLANS TO RETIRE 11 AIRPLANES IN EARLY 2002.
FEBRUARY 2002: 737-277 (768-22645 & 52) RETURNED TO PACIFICORP.
APRIL 2002: 13,145 EMPLOYEES.
MAIN BASE: PHOENIX SKY HARBOR INTERNATIONAL (PHX).
HUBS: LAS VEGAS - MCCARRAN INTERNATIONAL (LAS); COLUMBUS METROPOLITAN (CSG).
(TELEPHONE: +1 (480) 693-0800). (FAX: +1 (480) 693-5546).
IN JUNE 2002, LAS VEGAS - MEXICO CITY. LAS VEGAS - INDIANAPOLIS.
1ST QUARTER = -$358.3M (-$12.8M): 6.86B (RPK) (-12.71%); -13.87% (ASK); 70.1% LF (+.9); 4.3M PAX (-15.7%); 12.88M (FTK) (+13.73%).
737-277 (789-22648, N1181AW) RETURNED TO PACIFIC HARBOR.
MAY 2002: PHOENIX/LAS VEGAS - RALEIGH. IN JUNE 2002, LAS VEGAS - HARTFORD. ATLANTA - LAS VEGAS.
June 2002: AMERICA WEST AIRLINES (AMW) 2001 = -$147.87M (+$7.68M): 30.69B (RPK) (-.2%); 71.9% LF (+1.4); 19.58M PAX (-1.9%); 42.30M (FTK) (-18%); 13,145 EMPLOYEES (-4.8%).
2001 Top World Airlines by Passenger Traffic (RPK) (B):
1 UAL 187.67; 2 AAL 170.88; 3 DAL 163.66; 4 NWA 117.66; 5 BAB 106.27; 6 CAL 98.37; 7 AFA 94.42; 8 DLH 86.70; 9 JAL 84.27; 10 USA 73.93; 11 SWA 71.59; 12 SIA 69.15; 13 QAN 67.89; 14 ACN 67.03; 15 KLM 57.85; 16 ANA 56.90; 17 CAT 44.79; 18 TII 44.04; 19 IBE 41.30; 20 KAL 38.45; 21 MAS 38.31; 22 ALI 36.52; 23 SWS 32.98; 24 TWA 31.85; 25 AMW 30.69.
July 2002: Dion Flanery, VP Route Planning & Scheduling, ex-Continental Airlines (CAL).
2nd Q = -$8.5M: 5,2B RPM (-.3%); -.7% ASM; 75.7% LF (+.2). 6 months = 9.4B RPM (-6.3%); -7.3% ASM; 73.1% LF (+.8); 9.38M PAX (-9.77%); 25.6M FTK (+17.86%).
In October 2002, to Calgary and Pittsburgh. In December 2002, to Washington Dulles (IAD); and Las Vegas - (IAD).
(FAA) & America West Airlines (AMW) took swift action against an (AMW) flight crew, charged with the felony of operating an airplane (A319, with 127 on board), while intoxicated. The (FAA) nullified the pilot's (FC) licenses of Captain Thomas Porter Cloyd, and First Officer Christopher Hughes, & (AMW) terminated their employment.
August 2002: Randy Richards, VP Cargo.
In October 2002, code share with Hawaiian (HWI) to Honolulu.
September 2002: In December 2002, to Colorado Springs.
October 2002: 3rd Quarter = -$31M (-$31.7M).
1st 6 months Top World Airlines Passenger Traffic B (RPK):
1 AAL 95.18; 2 UAL 84.56; 3 DAL 74.53; 4 NWA 56.50; 5 BAB 49.30; 6 AFA 48.21; 7 CAL 47.49; 8 DLH 42.06; 9 JAL 39.44; 10 SWA 36.03; 11 SIA 36.00; 12 ACN 33.69; 13 USA 33.06; 14 KLM 27.54; 15 CAT 23.07; 16 IBE 19.53; 17 KAL 16.47; 18 CHI 15.70; 19 AMW 15.20; 20 ALI 14.21; 21 EAD 13.45; 22 VAR 12.68; 23 GUN 12.49; 24 SAS 12.01; 25 BEJ 10.32.
In December 2002 - April 2003, to Manzanillo (2/week).
November 2002: Defers delivery of 2 A320's from 2003, to 2004, although it still plans delivery of 2 A319's in 2003. Will return 2 737-300's (23218; 23219), & 2 A320'S (315; 317), to lessors in 2003.
1st 9 months Top World Airlines Passenger Traffic (RPK) B:
1 AAL 148.39; 2 UAL 132.89; 3 DAL 123.75; 4 NWA 88.26; 5 BAB 76.23; 6 AFA 74.00; 7 CAL 73.12; 8 DLH 67.07; 9 SIA 55.60; 10 SWA 55.20; 11 JAL 54.81; 12 ACN 54.41; 13 USA 50.38; 14 KLM 48.87; 15 QAN 43.76; 16 CAT 36.14; 17 IBE 30.78; 18 KAL 28.06; 19 AMW 23.82; 20 TII 19.76; 21 ALI 19.68; 22 SAS 18.82; 23 CHI 18.23; 24 VAR 17.47; 25 GUN 17.21.
A319-132 (1844, N833AW) delivery.
December 2002: To Colorado Springs. Columbus to Fort Myers.
January 2003: 4th Q (AMW) Holdings & The Leisure Company tour packager = -$32.5M (-$60.9M). 2002 = -$430.2M (-$147.9M): 19.87B (RPM) (+4.2%); +1.8% (ASM); 73.6% LF (+1.8).
In March 2003, Las Vegas - Mexico City.
February 2003: In March 2003, Las Vegas - Eugene, Oregon (daily nonstop). In April 2003, Phoenix - Billings, Medford, and Pittsburgh (daily nonstops). In May 2003, Phoenix - Cleveland (3/day nonstop).
March 2003: In June 2003, Phoenix - Cancun.
A320 (092) sold to Memphis Group for part out.
April 2003: Cuts -250 employees in professional, management, and administration positions, as it tries to reduce annual costs by -$100M.
April 2003: America West Holdings 1st Quarter = -$62M (-$273.5M).
World Top 20 Airlines 1st Q Passenger Traffic (B) (RPK):
1 (AAL) 44.67; 2 (UAL) 39.66; 3 (DAL) 36.82; 4 (NWA) 26.65; 5 (BAB) 23.31; 6 (AFA) 23.27; 7 (CAL) 21.35; 8 (DLH) 20.62; 9 (SWA) 17.53; 10 (KLM) 14.04; 11 (USA) 13.28; 12 (SIA) 12.20*; 13 (ACN) 9.65*; 14 (CAT) 8.51*; 15 (AMW) 7.84; 16 (QAN)* 7.18; 17 (KAL)* 6.72; 18 (IBE) 6.17*; 19 (EAD) 5.69*; 20 (AAT) 5.42. * 2 months only.
Will eliminate its Columbus, Ohio hub.
May 2003: 737-3G7 (1090-23219) returned to lessor.
June 2003: A320-232 (2029, N670AW) delivery.
July 2003: 2002 = -$387.9M (-$249.9M): 32.00B (RPK) (+4.2%); +1.8% (ASK); 73.6% LF (+1.7); 114M (FTK) (-5.3%); 11,908 EMPLOYEES (+5.2%).
2002 TOP 25 WORLD AIRLINES - PASSENGER TRAFFIC - B - (RPK):
1 (AAL) 195.81; 2 (UAL) 176.15; 3 (DAL) 152.66; 4 (NWA) 115.91; 5 (BAB) 99.71; 6 (AFA) 96.80; 7 (CAL) 95.51; 8 (DLH) Group 88.57; 9 (JAL) 83.54; 10 (QAN) 75.23; 11 (SWA) 73.05; 12 (SIA) 71.12; 13 (ACN) 69.42; 14 (USA) 69.42; 15 (KLM) 58.89; 16 (ANA) 52.97; 17 (CAT) 49.04; 18 (TII) 48.51; 19 (KAL) 41.80; 20 (IBE) 40.47; 21 (MAS) 36.90; 22 (AMW) 31.98; 23 (SAS) Group 30.91; 24 (EAD) 30.17; 25 (ALI) 29.84.
In October 2003, Phoenix - Edmonton (CRJ, 64 PAX, 2 class, 2 daily nonstop).
2nd Quarter = +$79.7M, & excluding federal rebates of security costs, this was +$12.9M: +15.9% fuel costs. 1st 6 months = +$16.7M (-$.3M).
August 2003: In October 2003, to fly transcontinental with Los Angeles (LAX) - Boston/ - New York (JFK) (A319, daily nonstop). In December 2003, San Francisco (SFO) - New York (JFK), Phoenix - San Jose, Costa Rica (A319, 2 class, daily nonstop), and March 2004, (SFO) - Boston.
September 2003: In October 2003, Las Vegas - St Louis. In October 2003, Phoenix - Ixtapa (Sats).
A320-232 (2077, N671AW), US BANK leased.
October 2003: Elise Eberwein, VP Corporate Communications, ex-Frontier Airlines (FRO).
(AMW) Holdings 3rd Quarter = +$32.9M (-$49.6M): +4.9 LF. 9 months (AMW) Holdings = +$50.6M (-$335.90M).
737-277 (22650) returned to lessor.
December 2003: Phoenix - San Jose, Costa Rica (A319, 2 class, daily nonstop).
+4 orders (March 2004) A320's, 3 (ILF) leased & 1 (BOU) leased. A320 (BOU) leased. 1 A319 & 5 A320's deliveries in 2004 to maintain +10% capacity growth. A320-232 (1935), (BOU) leased.
January 2004: In March 2004, Las Vegas - Cleveland, El Paso. In April 2004, Las Vegas - Burbank.
4th Quater = +$6.8M (-$52M): driven by a +7.4% stage length, increased airplane utilization, and cost saving initiatives. 2003 = +$57.4M (-$387.9M): 34.25B (RPK) (+7.1%); 76.4% LF; 20.05M PAX (+3.1%); 60.83M (FTK) (+15.9%).
Started offering "buy-on-board" meals on selected long-haul flights. The "In-Flight Cafe" is catered by LSG Sky Chefs.
2 A320-232's (V2527-A5) (565, /96; 661, /97), ex-Aero Lloyd (ACH), (ILF) leased. 174Y. 1 A320-232 (V2527-A5) (2193, N672AW), (ILF) leased.
February 2004: In June 2004, Phoenix - Anchorage.
March 2004: Las Vegas - Austin, El Paso, San Antonio, Cleveland, Edmonton (Alberta), & Vancouver (daily). San Francisco (SFO) - Boston (A319, 2/day). In June 2004, Las Vegas to Fresno, San Luis Obispo, Medford, and Calgary (all daily). Los Angeles to Edmonton, Vancouver, Mazatlan, and Puerto Vallarta (daily).
April 2004: (AMW) Holdings 1st Quarter = +$1.2M (-$62M): 8.54B (RPK) (+9.16%); +7.56% (ASK); 72.2% LF (+1.1); 4.90M PAX (+5.25%); 14.34M (FTK) (-.01%); +6.9% daily airplane utilization; +5.2% average stage length, despite +13% fuel costs.
Launched e-ticketing with Hawaiian Airlines (HWI). Customers now can book flights to/from all codeshare cities at its website.
In June 2004, Los Angeles - Washington Dulles (IAD) (2/day nonstop), its 5th transcontinental route. Phoenix - Long Beach.
737-2U9 (22575) sold to Turbo Analysis.
May 2004: Travis White, VP Marketing replaces Ken Feldman, and Kara Gin, VP Fiancial Planning, replaces J R Wilson, both are leaving the airline. Paul Lambert was promoted to VP Corporate Real Estate. Ron Cole, VP Customers and Inflight Services. Joette Schmidt, VP Sales.
Amends its Airbus (EDS) airplane order by canceling 15 A318's (PW6000) and swapping the order for 7 orders A319's & 10 orders A320's, plus 1 order (February 2005) A319 & 4 orders (February 2005) A320's leased.
737-277 (22647) withdran from use (WFU) at Goodrich (BFG).
June 2004: Los Angeles (LAX) - Washington Dulles (2/day). (LAX) - Boston, New York (JFK) (3/day). (LAX) - Edmonton (daily nonstop). (LAX) - Puerto Vallarta (daily nonstop). (LAX) - Vancouver & Mazatlan (daily nonstop). Phoenix - Reagan Washington National (3/day). Phoenix - Long Beach. Las Vegas - Fresno, San Luis Obispo, Medford, & Calgary (daily nonstops). Las Vegas - Santa Barbara (2/day). Phoenix - Anchorage (daily). In september 2004, Las Vegas - New Orleans (3/week nonstop). In October 2004, Las Vegas - Houston (daily nonstop).
July 2004: Last 6 months = +$6.9M (-61.1%) (+$17.7M): 11.22B (RPM) (+8.2%); +7.8% (ASM); 75.3% LF (+.3). 2nd Q = +$5.7M (-92.9%) (+$79.7M).
In October 2004, Jet Blue (JBL) will invade another low-cost carrier's turf when it begins New York (JFK) - Phoenix (home of America West (AMW) (its 29th destination).
737-277 (872-22655) returned to IBM Credit.
August 2004: Brice Manufacturing Company, a wholly owned subsidiary of Timco Aviation Services (ASC), was selected by America West (AMW) for its 22 new A319/A320 fleet interior seat renewal program with the possibility of follow-up work to retrofit a number of airplanes in its current fleet. Additionally, Timco renewed its multiple-year contract with (AMW) for heavy maintenance of its 737, 757, & A319/A320 fleets.
OK from Department of Transportation (DOT) for codeshare partnership with Virgin Atlantic Airways (VAA), including connections to (VAA) services to Los Angeles, San Francisco, Las Vegas, and Washington Dulles to (AMW) services from Phoenix, Las Vegas, and San Diego.
In November 2004, San Diego - Puerto Vallarte & Los Cabos (4/week). Las Vegas to Denver, Los Angeles, Minneapolis/St Paul, Oakland, Chicago O'Hare, Portland (Oregon), Seattle, San Jose (California), Salt Lake City, Orange County, and Vancouver. In December 2004, Los Angeles - Acapulco (Sats), Oakland - Los Cabos (Saturdays).
Selects Workbrain Corp to "optimize workforce processes" for its 8,500 ground personnel.
737-277 (768-22645) returned to (IBM). Formalized its previously announced commitment for +7 A319's & +10 A320's & +4 A320's from various lessors, + purchase or lease of +1 A320 for total 22 new airplanes to be delivered starting in late 2005, all with (V2500) engines.
September 2004: Department of Transportation (DOT) OK for code share with Royal Jordanian Airlines (RJA).
1st of 40 airplanes outsourced to TACA International (TAC) Aeroman Maintenance Repair & Overhaul (MRO) for "C" checks, mostly on A320's through December 2005.
October 2004: Owing to a "weak yield environment and the extraordinarily high price of fuel," America West Airlines (AMW) anticipates reporting "significant losses" for the 3rd & 4th Quarters. 3rd Q = -$47.1M (+$32.9M): +48.8% Fuel expenses; +10.5% (RPM); +6.1% Stage length. 9 months = -$40.2M (+$50.6M): 17.54B (RPM) (+9%); +8% (ASM); 77.4% LF (+.8).
Phoenix - Omaha; - Calgay, Omaha.
America West Airlines (AMW) is in exploratory talks with ATA Airlines (AAT) about purchasing the carrier.
A319-132 (2302, N834AW), delivery.
November 2004: In March 2005, Las Vegas - Albuquerque.
737-277 (832-22653, N186AW), returned to EDS Leasing. 2 737-277's (801-22649; 862-22654), WFU. A320-232 (2312, N673AW), delivery.
December 2004: Phoenix - Manzanillo (Saturdays). Los Angeles - Acapulco (737, Saturdays) & Oakland - Cabos (737, Saturdays).
737-277 (862-22654, N187AW) WFU at Goodyear (BFG).
January 2005: 4th Q = -$49.7M (+$6.8M): +$50M fuel costs. 2004 = -$89.9M (+$57.4M). Will cease New York (JFK) - San Francisco (SFO), Boston - (SFO), & Los Angeles (LAX) - Washington Dulles (IAD), but will continue (LAX) - Boston, & (JFK).
In April 2005, Las Vegas - Pittsburgh and in May 2005, Las Vegas - Anchorage (daily nonstop).
A320-232 (2359), delivery.
March 2005: A320-232 (2405, N675AW), Pegasus (PSS) leased.
April 2005: America West Airlines (AMW) is a major US carrier providing scheduled passenger and cargo transportation across North America and Central America. It expands its route system through strategic alliances with several domestic and international airlines.
(IATA) Code: HP - 401. (ICAO) Code: AWE - CACTUS.
Parent organization/shareholders: America West Holdings (100%).
Alliances: Big Sky Airlines; British Airways (BAB); (EVA) Air; Hawaiian Airlines (HWI); Mesa Airlines; Northwest Airlines (NWA); Qantas Airways (QAN); Royal Jordanian Airlines (RJA); & Virgin Atlantic Airways (VAA).
Main Base: Phoenix Sky Harbor International (PHX).
Hub: Las Vegas McCarran International (LAS).
Domestic, Scheduled Destinations: Albuquerque; Anchorage; Atlanta; Austin; Baltimore; Boise; Boston; Burbank; Chicago; Cleveland; Columbus, Ohio; Dallas/Fort Worth; Denver; Detroit; El Paso; Fort Lauderdale; Hartford; Houston; Indianapolis; Kansas City; Las Vegas; Long Beach; Los Angeles; Miami; Milwaukee; Minneapolis/St Paul; New Orleans; New York; Oakland; Omaha; Ontario; Orlando; Philadelphia; Phoenix; Pittsburgh; Portland; Raleigh/Durham; Reno; Sacramento; Salt Lake City; San Diego; San Francisco; San Jose; Santa Ana; Seattle; Spokane; St Louis; Tampa; & Washington.
International, Scheduled Destinations: Acapulco; Calgary; Cancun; Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo; Manzanillo; Mazatlan; Mexico City; Puerto Vallarta; San Jose Cabo; Toronto; & Vancouver.
1st Q (AMW) Holdings Corp = +$33.6M (-$1.6M).
In discussions with US Airways (USA) regarding possible merger.
May 2005: Las Vegas - Anchorage (A319, 124 PAX, daily nonstop).
America West Holdings Corporation (AMW) amd US Airways Group (USA) made an agreement to merge and create the "first full-service, nationwide airline with a consumer-friendly pricing structure of a low-fare carrier" and operate under the US Airways (USA) brand.
The transaction is expected to be financed with roughly $1.5B of new capital.
A319-132 (2458, N835AW) & A320-232 (2430, N677AW), (ILF) leased.
June 2005: Las Vegas - Monterey (daily).
A320-232 (2482, N678AW), Pegasus (PSS) leased.
July 2005: 1st 6 months = +$47.5M (+$9.1M): 12.06B RPM (+7.5%); +1% ASM; 80.1% LF (+4.8). 2nd Q = +$13.9M (+30.5%); (+$10.7M): +43.6% fuel costs.
Plans service Phoenix to 4 Hawaiian islands as well as from Las Vegas to Kahului. In 12/05, Phoenix to Honolulu & Kahului (daily). In 3/05, Las Vegas to Kahului (daily), Phoenix - Honolulu (2/day), Phoenix - Lihue (4/week), & Phoenix - Kona (3/week).
August 2005: 11,893 employees (-6.8%) (including 1,900 Flight Crew (FC)).
September 2005: Merger partner, US Airways (USA) received interim approval from the bankruptcy court to sell and lease back five A330s, nine A319s and five A320s. If given final approval, the transactions will raise more than $120 million in liquidity. The court also approved a deal reached between US Airways and the US Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp resolving nearly $2.7 billion in claims. Under terms of the agreement, the carrier will pay PBGC $13.5 million in cash in addition to giving it a $10 million note and 70% of the common stock being allocated to unsecured creditors. Finally, the court okayed a previously announced deal under which the airline is selling Embraer jets and slots to Republic Airways Holdings, a transaction that will provide US Airways with around $100 million in cash.
US Airways Group's creditors yesterday approved the carrier's plan of reorganization encompassing merger with America West Airlines (AMW) Holdings, leaving bankruptcy court approval as the last key step in the process. A hearing is set for today. On Tuesday, America West (AMW) shareholders approved the merger. "We have worked enthusiastically to put together a robust plan that will benefit our customers, our stakeholders and our employees. The result will be a more stable and more competitive US Airways (USA)," said President and CEO Bruce Lakefield, who will become vice chairman of the merged carrier, which retains the US Airways (USA) name. Assuming it is completed, this will be the largest US airline merger since American Airlines (AAL) acquired (TWA) in 2000.
US Airways (USA)'s reorganization plan received bankruptcy court approval Friday, clearing the way for the carrier to emerge from Chapter 11 and merge with America West (AMW) as early as Sept. 27, US Airways said.
The airline filed for its second reorganization on Sept. 12, 2004, having emerged from its first go-around on March 31, 2003.
"This is a great day for both (USA) and (AMW)," said (USA) President and CEO Bruce Lakefield. "For our customers, we are about to become the kind of airline that they have been asking for--a global carrier offering full-service amenities and simplified fares. For our employees, this merger will provide more stability and a chance to be a part of a vibrant new company."
The successor airline will begin life with unrestricted cash of approximately $1.7 billion and total cash of around $2.5 billion. Investors have agreed to inject $565 million in new equity, while a public stock offering is expected to raise a further $150 million, (USA) said. On a pro forma basis, it will have $10 billion in revenues and "savings of over $600 million annually through synergies associated with the merger" with (AMW).
US Airways Group, which is set to exit from Chapter 11 and merge with America West Airlines Holdings as early as next Tuesday, cautioned yesterday in a filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission that it expects "significant" operating losses "to continue through 2006. "On a pro forma basis, the carriers had a combined operating loss of $101 million and a net loss of $272 million on revenue of $5.14 billion for the first half of 2005.
The information is contained in a registration statement covering an offering of 8.5 million shares at a proposed maximum offering price of $17.646 per share. It is expected to raise gross proceeds of $150 million before underwriter discounts and expenses, or $172.5 million if the underwriters' overallotment option of an additional 1.28 million shares is exercised in full. Proceeds will be used for general corporate purposes. The company also announced the sale of $125 million worth of convertible notes due 2020.
In the registration statement, US Airways (USA) estimated that the combination of the carriers "will result in significant annual revenue and cost synergies of approximately $600 million." Of this, approximately $175 million will come from scheduling the fleet more efficiently and adding new low-fare service to Hawaii. It also expects "cost synergies of approximately $250 million by reducing administrative overhead, consolidating Information Technology [IT] systems and combining facilities." The final tranche of $175 million comes from increased revenue opportunities owing to the expanded route network the merger will create.
The combined airline will operate a mainline fleet of 360 airplanes supported by approximately 241 regional jets and 112 turboprops, down from 411 mainline aircraft operated by the carriers as of June 30. US Airways Group projects removing an additional 47 airplanes by the end of 2006.
Integration of labor groups and the operation is estimated to take 24 months. The carriers achieved a key milestone Sept 15 with an agreement with the Air Line Pilots Association, which represents pilots at both, that will allow the airlines to enter into reciprocal codesharing prior to the merging of the pilot workforce. The deal also provides for "standards and procedures related to integration of the two pilot seniority lists." It covers creation of a plan that will provide for profit-sharing on 10% of all pre-tax income up to a 10% pre-tax margin and 15% of pre-tax income above the 10% margin.
In the largest USA airline merger since American Airlines (aal) acquired (TWA) in 2000, US Airways (USA) emerged from Chapter 11 and completed its merger with America West Airlines (AMW), with the US Airways (USA) brand surviving. The carriers plan to begin codesharing on Oct 5. Emphasizing its claim to being "the largest full-service low-cost airline" in the USA, the company's new common stock is trading under the symbol LCC on the New York Stock Exchange, where US Airways Chairman and CEO Doug Parker rang the opening bell on Tuesday, stating, "Today we start a new chapter in aviation history." The company's shares closed at $19.30, off 8% from the opening.
The carriers will continue to maintain separate air operating certificates (AOC)'s for up to three years as they work through staff integration issues among the mostly union workforce. In the short term, websites and reservations systems also will operate separately.
In combination, the two offer a network covering 229 cities in the USA, Canada, the Caribbean, Latin America and Europe served by approximately 3,600 daily flights. Main hubs are in Charlotte, Phoenix and Philadelphia, with secondary hub/focus cities at Las Vegas, Pittsburgh, New York LaGuardia and Reagan Washington National Airport. In addition, Piedmont and PSA, two wholly owned Regional subsidiaries, will continue to operate in the US Airways Express network.
Interestingly, US Airways (USA) has maintained its membership in the Star Alliance, making it the only self-described LCC in the global partnership.
737-301 (23261) & 737-3Q8 (23507), returned to lessor. A320-232's (455; 2029; 2077), returned to (GEF) to be leased to Air Deccan (DCC) 1/06.
October 2005: US Airways (USA) named Hal Huele senior VP-technical operations. Huele, 57, most recently was senior VP-safety and regulatory compliance. He replaces John Prestifilippo, who joined Spirit Airlines (SPR) as senior VP-technical operations. Also departing US Airways (USA) for Spirit (SPR) was Managing Director - Europe Tony Lefebvre, who becomes senior VP-customer service for the Fort Lauderdale-based budget carrier.
US Airways Group last Friday said its investors took up their last tranche of options to purchase additional shares of US Airways Group common stock at $15 per share. The remaining one-third of the options, exercisable for approximately 2.5 million shares, were scheduled to expire Oct 13.
Airbus received formal approval from its shareholders, (EADS) and BAE Systems, yesterday for industrial launch of the A350 on the basis of 140 "firm order commitments" from nine customers, one of which is unidentified. In Washington, Airbus COO Charles Champion said the company is "confident" it will reach 200 commitments by year end, while Executive VP-Procurement Henri Courpron said that all 200 will be firmed within the same timeframe.
As previously announced, the airplane will be offered in two versions, the A350-800 seating 258 in a three-class configuration with a range of 8,800 nm and the dash 900 seating 316 with a range of 7,500 nm. The dash 800 will enter service in mid-2010 while the larger dash 900 arrives later in the year.
Also on Thursday, Rolls-Royce announced that it finally had reached agreement with Airbus to supply a new variant of its Trent engine series for the A350. The Trent 1700 will be available for A350 deliveries from mid-2011. The airframe will launch with a version of the GEnx. To date, GE has captured all firm orders from identified customers, a total of 130 shipsets, plus 32 options.
Courpron said the delay in bringing Rolls into the program was owing to both technical and commercial considerations: "We wanted to make sure we knew what Rolls had to offer." Implying that the delay was partly due to the engine-maker's negotiating position, he said "it was not a coincidence" that Rolls came aboard at virtually the same time Airbus received authorization to build the jet. "We felt very comfortable going the whole way with just GE," he added. "We sold 140 of them without Rolls."
The current customer list comprises Air Europa (ARE) (10), ALAFCO (12), CIT (TCI) (5), GECAS (GEF) (10), Kingfisher Airlines (KFH) (5), Qatar Airways (QTA) (60), TAM (TPR) (8), US Airways (USA) (20) and an unidentified customer (10).
The Trent 1700 will offer a thrust rating of 75,000 lb and will run for the first time in mid-2009. The four-digit nomenclature is a departure for Rolls. A spokesperson told this website that the "1700" is a reference to the mid-70,000-lb thrust rating, not an homage to the Trent 700 that powers the A350's closest sibling, the A330.
"We have strong, market-leading or sole-source positions with the Trent on the A330, latest A340s and the A380, and we are equally confident that the Trent 1700 will establish itself successfully on the A350," Rolls President-Civil Aerospace Mike Terrett said.
A319-132 (2570, N836AW), Pegasus (PSS) leased.
November 2005: US Airways (USA) announced that $777 million in debt, of which $752 is guaranteed by the USA government, has been sold at a light premium to pay to 13 fixed-income investors.
US Airways (USA) Group, which merged with America West Holdings (AWH) Corp, parent of America West Airlines (AMW), on Sept 27, reported a net loss of -$87 million for the third quarter, or -$23 million if special items are not included. However, the results exclude nearly all of the third-quarter financial and operating performance of US Airways - - by far the larger of the two companies - - because although the merger was structured so that (AWH) became a wholly owned subsidiary of US Airways (USA) Group, (AWH) is treated as the acquiring entity for accounting purposes. Therefore, third-quarter 2005 results include 88 days of (AWH) and only four days of US Airways (USA), while 2004 results include only the performance of (AWH). In the year-ago period, US Airways (USA) (really (AWH) had a net loss of -$29 million, or -$46 million if special items are excluded.
"Obviously our third-quarter results do not yet include any of the expected positive effects from the merger," Chairman and CEO Doug Parker said during a conference call. He reiterated earlier projections that "the new US Airways (USA) will be profitable in 2006, excluding one-time merger-related transaction costs."
Operating revenue rose +36.4% to $926 million, in part owing to the inclusion of 96 hours of US Airways (USA)'s operations but also due to a +20.4% hike in yield to 10.49 cents on a +7.9% gain in RPMs. With capacity up +9.9%, load factor dipped 1.5 points, holding the passenger RASM increase to +18.2% to 8.38 cents.
Operating expenses climbed +44.7% to $997 million, driven by a +65% rise in fuel expense before accounting for hedging gains and $84 million in special charges. At the unit level, cost per ASM excluding special items grew +14.8% to 9.11 cents but only +7.3% to 6.45 cents excluding the impact of special items and fuel expense. Operating loss was -$71 million, widened from -$10 million last year.
On a standalone basis, the company said that US Airways (USA) Inc reported net income of +$584 million for the third quarter, which included a noncash gain of +$664 million related to its emergence from bankruptcy. Excluding the gain, it had a net loss of -$80 million in the quarter. America West Airlines (AMW) reported a net loss of -$71 million for the quarter, or -$7 million excluding special items.
US Airways (USA)/(AMW) Group said in a filing with the USA Securities and Exchange Commission that it raised $189 million from a public stock offering in September. It said at the conclusion of the filing that "America West (AMW) Holdings and US Airways (USA) Group anticipate the combination of America West (AMW) Holdings and US Airways (USA) Group will result in significant annual revenue, operating and cost synergies that would be unachievable without completing the merger. We cannot assure you that we will be able to achieve these revenue, operating and cost synergies and the synergies have not been reflected in the pro forma financial statements."
The ten largest USA passenger airlines in aggregate lost -$3.24 billion in the third quarter ended Sept 30, a threefold increase over a loss of -$1.04 billion in the third period of 2004. However, current-period results include more than $2.5 billion in bankruptcy-related charges at Northwest (NWA), Delta (DAL) and United (UAL). Revenue for the group, which comprises AirTran (CQT), Alaska Air Group (ASA), AMR Corp (AAL), Continental (CAL), Delta (DAL), JetBlue (JBL), Northwest (NWA), Southwest (SWA), United (UAL) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA), rose +13.6% to $25.32 billion while expenses climbed just +11.4% in spite of the dramatic run-up in fuel prices throughout the quarter. The result was an industry operating profit of +$213.3 million compared to a loss of -$180.8 million in the year-ago period. Excluding fuel, the third-quarter operating costs grew less than +3% compared to last year, while unit costs dropped -2.3% excluding fuel and special charges.
Separately, US Airways (USA) said it resumed scheduled service to New Orleans yesterday with flights from Philadelphia, Reagan Washington National and Charlotte. It will increase New Orleans service in January.
US Airways (USA)/(AMW) firmed up its May commitment for 20 A350s, Airbus announced. No engine choice was announced for the airplanes, which will be delivered between 2011 and 2014. US Airways (USA)/(AMW) operates nine A330s, which have cockpit commonality with the A350.
2 A319-132's (2595, N837AW; 2615, N838AW), deliveries. A320-232 (471), returned to lessor.
December 2005: US Airways (USA) reached a transition agreement with 7,150 US Airways (USA) and former America West Airlines (AMW) customer service representatives. The US Airways (USA) employees are members of the Communications Workers of America (CWA), while the former (AMW) workgroup has been represented by the International Brotherhood of Teamsters (IBT) since late 2004 but has yet to negotiate a collective bargaining agreement with (AMW), which merged with US Airways (USA) in September. Under the agreement, the two groups will be represented by the Airline Customer Service Employee Association, an umbrella for (CWA) and (IBT). As a result of the accord, some 3,400 former (AMW) agents will receive wage increases of up to +$5 per hour over the next 24 months. The deal also covers topics related to integration of the two groups and includes provisions governing the rehiring of furloughed employees, seniority and agreement on terms of the final labor accord. "Today marks an important milestone as we continue our integration," US Airways (USA)/(AMW) President and CEO Doug Parker said.
US Airways Group Incorporated (AMW)/(USA) has signed a contract valued at more than $400 million to purchase General Electric Company engines for use in 20 jets ordered from Airbus.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) began nonstop service from Phoenix to Honolulu and Maui. Each of the 2 routes will be served by a daily 757-200 flight.
General Electric said it will start receiving A350 airplanes in 2011. Dow component General Electric has agreements to install its (GEnx) engines in a total of 112 A350 jets.
737-3YO (23684) & 757-2G7 (22691), returned to lessor. 2 A320-232's (2613, N697AW; 2630, N680AW), deliveries.
January 2006: US Airways (USA)/(AMW) is cutting fares on 21 routes between markets in the eastern and midwestern USA and its hubs in Philadelphia, Pittsburgh and Charlotte. Sample fares provided by the airline show reductions of between -42% (Charlotte - Indianapolis, Philadelphia - Akron) and -61% (Pittsburgh - Syracuse). The routes may be operated by its Regional partners, America West (AMW) or through codeshare operations with United Airlines (UAL). US Airways (AMW)/(USA) followed up on its fare reductions on 21 routes earlier this month with cuts ranging from -39% to -55% on flights from Charlotte, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh and New York LaGuardia to 14 cities in the Midwest and Southeast, as well as to Seattle from Charlotte.
Separately, US Airways Group (USA)/(AMW) (US Airways mainline, America West and US Airways Express) reported a -7% drop in passenger traffic to 4.86 billion (RPM)s in December compared to the year-ago month. Capacity declined -7.4% to 6.73 billion (ASM)s and load factor lifted +0.3 point to 72.2% LF. Passengers enplaned fell -9% to 5.2 million. Domestic mainline traffic was down -13.3% to 2.63 billion (RPM)s on a capacity decrease of -13.4% to 3.72 billion (ASM)s and load factor was static at 70.7% LF. Year-end consolidated traffic climbed +1.9% to 66.65 billion (RPM)s, capacity rose +0.9% to 87.56 billion (ASM)s and load factor increased +0.8 point to 76.1% LF.
Full year 2005 = Passenger traffic 107.24B (RPK) (9th highest in world).
US Airways (USA)/(AMW) said it reached a transitional agreement with the Association of Flight Attendants (AFA), representing its 11,000 cabin staff, that will "govern many merger-related aspects of the parties' relationship" until a single agreement can be reached covering all the merged airline's cabin staff. Among other items, the transition deal covers job protection for active members, seniority list integration, job opportunities for furloughed workers and participation by cabin staff from US Airways (USA) and America West (AMW) in a profit-sharing plan.
5 737-301's (23555; 23557; 23558; 23559; 23740), WFU at Marana. 737-33A (23632), returned to lessor.
February 2006: US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) reported a -$261 million net loss in the fourth fiscal quarter ended Dec 31, the first full three-month period following the September 2005 merger of US Airways (USA) and America West Airlines (AMW), which is treated as the acquiring company for accounting purposes. As a result, year-on-year comparisons use only America West (AMW) figures and full-year data include 269 days of America West (AMW)'s results exclusively. Individually, US Airways (USA) lost -$120 million in the quarter, narrowed -44.9% from a -$218 million loss in fourth quarter of 2004. (AMW) lost -$139 million compared to -$68 million in the year-ago quarter.
The quarter included a -$69 million unrealized loss on fuel hedges, $36 million in special charges related to merger expenses and $18 million partially related to (AMW)'s prior (ATSB) loan. The company said standalone fourth-quarter results excluding special items improved over the year-ago period. For the year, the group reported a -$537 million loss. Combined, the carriers lost -$663 million last year.
"Our quarterly financial results reflect the continued difficult industry environment but also show some encouraging trends," Chairman, CEO and President Doug Parker said. "We are particularly pleased with the strong double-digit improvement in unit revenues experienced at both airlines. Looking forward, we continue to believe that excluding one-time merger-related transition costs, the new US Airways (AMW)/(USA) will be profitable in 2006, even at today's projected fuel prices."
Group quarterly revenues totaled $2.58 billion. Expenses came in at $2.77 billion, leaving a -$192 million operating loss. (AMW) reported a standalone operating loss of -$111 million, more than double the -$50 million deficit in the year-ago quarter, while US Airways (USA) lost -$71 million compared to -$128 million in the prior year. The combined carriers flew 16.65 billion (RPM)s passenger traffic during the quarter. Capacity was 22.67 billion (ASM)s and load factor was 73.4% LF. Passenger (RASM) was 10.33 cents and operating (CASM) was 12.21 cents.
For the year, the (AMW)-influenced results included operating revenues of $5.08 billion, expenses of $5.29 billion and an operating loss of -$217 million.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) signed a new five-year, full-content agreement with Sabre Travel Network to make available all its published fares and inventory through the Sabre GDS whether flown under the US Airways (USA) or America West (AMW) brands, including Web fares. Concurrent with the agreement, US Airways (AMW)/(USA) signed a "long-term full-content deal" with Travelocity, which includes the Travelocity Partner Network, as its "exclusive hotel content supplier" for the US Airways (AMW)/(USA) website.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) will replace America West (AMW) on the Las Vegas to Miami and Raleigh-Durham routes from March 29th. Each of the routes will have a daily flight operated with an A319. US Airways (AMW)/(USA) will inaugurate nonstop service from Philadelphia to Milan on May 30th. The airline will operate a daily flight using its 767-200. US Airways (AMW)/(USA) will inaugurate nonstop seasonal summer service from Philadelphia to Stockholm on June 3rd. The route will end on October 8th. The airline will operate a daily flight using its 767-200. US Airways (AMW)/(USA) will inaugurate nonstop seasonal summer service from Philadelphia to Lisbon on June 7th. The route will end on October 28th. The airline will operate 4 flights a week using its 757-200 departing Philadelphia on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays, & Saturdays and Lisbon on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays, & Sundays.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) Group's consolidated passenger traffic report for January indicated a -5.5% drop in (RPM)s to 4.66 billion, a -6.8% decline in capacity to 6.6 billion (ASM)s and a +1-point rise in load factor to 70.6% LF. Domestic traffic fell -5.4% to 3.92 billion (RPM)s, as capacity decreased -8.2% to 5.5 billion (ASM)s. International traffic lowered -6% to 733.7 million (RPM)s on a +1.2% increase in capacity to 1.1 billion (ASM)s.
While America West (AMW) and US Airways (USA) merged last year, the two pilot seniority lists have yet to be combined. However, the airline was able to negotiate a pay rate that is comparable to JetBlue (JBL), according to Jack Stephan, a spokesperson for the US Airways (USA) pilot group. "It's about $95 an hour for a captain and about $52 an hour for a first officer," he said.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) is recalling up to 55 of its 1,574 furloughed pilots (FC). The addition of three 757s played a part in prompting the carrier's decision. The US Airways (AMW)/(USA) (MEC) of the Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA) said in a message to members last week that bidding will close on Feb 19 and become effective in May and June.
Phoenix Sky Harbor handled more than 41.2 million passengers in 2005, setting a record for the third year in a row. At its busiest, the airport saw nearly 3.8 million passengers in March and more than 3.7 million in July.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) signed a three-year, $44 million contract with (AT&T) to provide voice and data services to its locations worldwide.
9 737-301's (23556; 23514; 23560; 23741; 23743; 23930; 23931; 23932; 23933) & 11 737-3B7's (22953; 22955; 22957; 22958; 23311; 23313; 23317; 23318; 23705; 23706; 23856), returned. 737-33A (23633, N174AW), WFU. 3 757-23N's (30548, N642UW; 30886, N643UW; 30887, N644UW), bought from SP Aircraft. A319-132's (2669, N839AW; 2690, N840AW), deliveries.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) will become the second carrier in the USA after JetBlue (JBL) to operate the Embraer EMB-190 after altering an existing order for 85 EMB-170s - - 57 of which are still to be delivered - - to an order for 25 EMB-190s and 32 additional "firm EMB-190s subject to reconfirmation," according to a joint statement from Embraer and US Airways (AMW)/(USA). The deal also includes up to 50 options for other airplanes in the EMB-170/-190 family. Deliveries will resume in November. US Airways (AMW)/(USA) announced the original order for EMB-170s in May 2003 in between its two bankruptcy reorganizations.
The EMB-190s will be configured for 88 seats, including 11 in first class. US Airways (AMW)/(USA) pilots rather than those of a Regional partner will operate the airplanes. Although the carrier left bankruptcy last fall, the agreement still must be affirmed by the USA Bankruptcy Court.
March 2006: US Airways Group, comprising US Airways (USA), US Airways Express and America West (AMW), flew a combined 4.43 billion (RPM)s passenger traffic in February, a decline of -8.7% from the year-ago month. Capacity fell -14.5% to 5.86 billion (ASM)s and load factor rose +4.9 points to 75.7% LF. Domestic traffic was down -9% to 3.75 billion (RPM)s against a -16.7% decrease in (ASM)s to 4.84 billion. International traffic fell -6.8% to 686.1 million (RPM)s as capacity dropped -2.3% to 1.02 billion (ASM)s.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) announced plans to refinance significant amounts of debt. US Airways (AMW)/(USA), which has seen industry-leading unit revenue growth since exiting bankruptcy and merging with America West (AMW) last fall - - including a +25% jump in February - - said it entered into a commitment letter with (GE) Commercial Financing to refinance around $1.1 billion of its outstanding debt at LIBOR plus +3.50% to 3.75%. Current financings are at LIBOR plus +6% on the US Airways (USA) side and LIBOR plus +8.4% on the America West (AMW) side, according to a spokesperson. If completed, the airline said the refinancing will "reduce its near-term interest expense by a significant amount" and extend maturities.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) announced the recall of approximately 400 furloughed flight attendants (CA). Recall notices will be prioritized by seniority and will begin in April, putting the returning cabin staff in place for the carrier's summer schedule. Some 1,200 flight attendants remain on furlough from the former US Airways (USA). "We continue to make great progress in building the new US Airways (AMW)/(USA) and today's announcement furthers that momentum," President and CEO Doug Parker said. The airline recalled 55 of its 1,574 furloughed pilots last month.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) announced the addition of new flights from Las Vegas and Phoenix to Hawaii.
The airline will offer service from its Las Vegas hub to Kahului, Maui, bringing the total of nonstop destinations from Vegas to 60. The Phoenix hub is adding a second daily round trip to Honolulu and starting new service to two more Hawaiian islands: Lihue, Kauai. US Airways (AMW)/(USA) inaugurated nonstop service from Phoenix to Lihue. The airline now operates 4 flights a week, on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays, Sundays. US Airways (AMW)/(USA) inaugurated nonstop service from Phoenix to Kona. The airline now operates 3 flights a week, on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) will provide the service with 757-200 airplanes, which have capacity for 190 passengers (14 first class (F) and 176 coach class (Y)). A320-231 (271, N646AW) returned to lessor.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) will launch daily Philadelphia - Portland, Oregon, service June 1 aboard a two-class A320.
2 A320-231's (238; 271, N646AW) returned to lessor and scrapped. A320-231 (471, N639AW), returned to GECAS (GEF).
April 2006: US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) flew 5.6 billion consolidated (RPM)s passenger traffic in March, down -10.7% from the year-ago month. Capacity fell -11.3% to 6.92 billion (ASM)s and load factor rose +0.6 point to 81% LF. Domestic traffic dropped -11.3% to 4.68 billion (RPM)s against a -12.8% decrease in capacity to 5.76 billion (ASM)s. International (RPM)s declined -7.4% to 923.2 million and capacity slipped -2.7% to 1.15 billion (ASM)s.
A series of fires aboard CRJ200s resulting in temporary loss of all cockpit (EFIS) displays on some of the affected airplanes prompted the USA National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) to urge the (FAA) to address the situation. According to (NTSB), there have been seven fires aboard CRJ200s, six of them within the past six months. Although none resulted in loss of life, "the potential exists for an uncontained fire to compromise the oxygen line, which could develop into an even more critical situation." All fires have involved the Ultem 2200 surface material of the 1K4XD contactors aboard the airplanes. Four of the fires resulted in at least temporary loss of all (EFIS) displays.
The (NTSB) wants the (FAA) to require operators to provide separation of electrical power sources to prevent the simultaneous loss of (EFIS) displays and to require Bombardier to develop a means of protecting electrical terminals on the contactors from moisture-induced short circuits that have caused the fires. Four of the seven recommendations are classified as urgent. According to the Board, "Various forms of precipitation were present before the departure of each incident flight and when the main cabin door is open on the CRJ200, the forward cabin floor is exposed to the weather, leading to moisture accumulation in the avionics compartment."
America West Holdings (AMW)/(USA) said that it will redeem $112.3 million in debt on April 13. It will redeem its 7.5% convertible senior notes due 2009. Noteholders may convert multiples of the notes into US Airways (USA) common stock by April 11 or may opt to receive cash.
Air Canada (ACN) parent ACE Aviation Holdings is selling 35% of its holding in US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) to PAR Investment Partners LP. ACE invested $75 million to acquire 5 million shares representing 7% in the reorganized US Airways (AMW)/(USA) when it emerged from bankruptcy last September. ACE said net proceeds from the sale of 1.75 million shares will amount to $67 million, or 90% of its original investment, and it still holds 3.25 million shares worth nearly $123 million at a recent midday price of $37.83 per share. The transaction is expected to close April 13, and "in accordance with the terms of the original Stockholders Agreement entered into between ACE and US Airways (AMW)/(USA), ACE Chairman, President and CEO Robert Milton will resign" from the US Airways (AMW)/(USA) board in the near future.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) announced that ACE Aviation Holdings Chairman, President and CEO, Robert Milton resigned from the USA board of directors, as previously announced. Also, US Airways (AMW)/(USA) named Managing Director, Revenue Management, Brad Beakley as VP, Reservations and Inventory Services, and Tom Trenga as VP, Revenue Management. US Airways (AMW)/(USA) named Andrea Rader, Director, Corporate Communications. Rader, who comes from Wal-Mart, worked for American Airlines (AAL) for 14 years.
US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) announced that it has completed a $1.25 billion debt refinancing transaction. The new loan was underwritten by (GE) Commercial Finance and Morgan Stanley Senior Funding. At launch in March, the transaction was targeted to raise $1.1 billion. It was subsequently increased by $150 million in April in response to the transaction being well oversubscribed. The term of the loan is five years with the entire principal amount payable in full at maturity. Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, Derek Kerr said, "We are extremely pleased with the outcome of this refinancing. Today's transaction provides significant liquidity in the near term as we work to complete our integration, and the strong demand and oversubscribed conditions further demonstrate the financial market's confidence in the new US Airways (AMW)/(USA)."
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) announced completion of the redemption of approximately $112 million in principal amount of America West (AMW) Holdings' 7.5% convertible senior notes due 2009. The airline said the transaction did not result in a cash outlay "other than a modest payment for accrued interest in unconverted notes," as more than 99% of the holders chose to convert their notes into US Airways (AMW)/(USA) common stock at a rate of 34.376 shares per $1,000 principal amount. The notes originally were issued to airplane lessors in January 2002 in exchange for rent reductions as part of America West (AMW)'s restructuring. The reduction of debt will lower interest expense by -$8.4 million annually, the airline said.
The tentative pilot contract at Delta Air Lines (DAL), if ratified by its (ALPA) membership, will drop the carrier from having the third-highest-paid narrowbody captains to the middle of the pack, while Northwest Airlines (NWA), if its pilots ratify their agreement, will fall even further, from having the second-highest-paid work group to the No 8 position, just above JetBlue (JBL).
Interestingly, the (NWA) and (DAL) pilot (FC) ratification voting periods overlap. This sets up a scenario in which the (NWA) pilots may develop a case of "Delta (DAL) envy" because the terms of the (DAL) (TA) "appear significantly richer than those at Northwest," according to a report from JP Morgan.
The analysis, which cited as sources JP Morgan research, Atlanta-based AIR, Inc, and union contracts, shows that a 12-year Northwest (NWA) A320 captain currently earns $180 per hour, which falls to $137 under the (TA). By comparison, a 12-year Delta (DAL) 737 captain's hourly pay will fall from $173 to $149. Prior to their November 2004 concessionary agreement, Delta (DAL) captains were the highest-paid in the industry, earning $202 per hour.
In addition, Delta (DAL) pilots will receive a $2.1 billion unsecured claim and management has agreed that if the pilot pension plan is rejected - - as appears likely - - they will get cash and securities worth $650 million. Furthermore, the Delta (DAL) contact runs through 2009, versus 2011 for (NWA). Voting on the (NWA) contract began April 6 and ends May 3. Pilots can recast their votes up until polls close at 10 am on May 3.
The overall salary leader among USA passenger carriers is Southwest Airlines (SWA), whose 12-year 737 captains earn $186 per hour, according to JP Morgan. Among legacy network carriers, the leader is American Airlines (AAL) at $161. At the bottom is US Airways (USA) at $125, followed by United (UAL) at $131 and America West (AMW) at $134. US Airways (USA) and America West (AMW) pilots are in discussions about merging seniority lists.
Phoenix Sky Harbor received USA government approval to proceed with an enhancement program comprising a new, 33-gate West Terminal, demolition of Terminal 2, an automated people-mover, realignment of Sky Harbor Boulevard west of Terminal 3, two new taxiways and improvements to the Terminal 4 International Concourse. Approval from the Phoenix City Council still is required. The airport said its three runways should be sufficient "well into the future."
Galileo International announced the signing of a five-year, full-content enterprise agreement with US Airways (AMW)/(USA). Inventory includes services operated by America West Airlines (AMW).
737-375 (23707, N336AW), returned to (GEF).
May 2006: US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) reported a -6.8% decline in consolidated April passenger traffic to 5.45 billion (RPM)s. Capacity dropped -12.4% to 6.65 billion (ASM)s and load factor rose +4.9 points to 82% LF.
Touting synergies created by the merger of America West Airlines (AMW) and the former US Airways (USA), US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) reported a first-quarter profit of +$64 million compared to a profit of +$28 million for America West (AMW) in the year-ago quarter and said it now expects to be profitable for the full year, "even after accounting for merger-related expenses and continued high fuel costs." Excluding special items and a change in accounting principles, net profit was +$5 million, which company officials said marked an improvement over net losses of -$15 million and -$257 million for (AWA) and (USA), respectively, in the year-ago quarter.
During a webcast to discuss the results, US Airways (AMW)/(USA) Chairman, President and CEO, Doug Parker conceded that comparisons with the year-ago period are not "particularly meaningful" because the merger was accounted for as a purchase. This means that consolidated results for 2006 are compared to the standalone performance of America West (AMW) Holdings (AWAH) for 2005, since (AWAH) was the acquirer although the US Airways (AMW)/(USA) brand is the one, that has been adopted.
"While we recognize we are early in the integration process and we have much work yet to do, these results highlight the tremendous value we have achieved through the merger," said Parker.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA)'s standalone operating revenues for the first quarter increased +11.2% from the year-ago period to $1.8 billion while expenses decreased -2.4% to $1.76 billion, producing operating income of +$43 million, compared to an operating loss of -$182 million in the year-ago quarter. America West (AMW)'s standalone operating revenues jumped +17.2% to $859 million as expenses rose +13% to $776 million, leading to a +80.4% hike in operating profit to +$83 million.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA)'s mainline yield was up +19% to 13.97 cents on a -14% decrease in passenger traffic (RPM)s to 8.3 billion. Mainline capacity was down -16.3% (ASM)s, raising load factor +2 points to 75.2% LF, and pushing (RASM) up +22.2% to 10.50 cents. (AMW)'s standalone mainline yield grew +13.2% to 11.52 cents on a -0.2% decline in (RPM)s to 5.66 billion. With mainline capacity down -1.4%, load factor improved +0.9 point to 78.6% LF and (RASM) increased 16.2% to 10.27 cents.
Parker said the (RASM) gains can be attributed to cutting "marginal routes" to focus on "operating our best performing routes." Average fares are up about +20%, he said, noting the airline is "selling a lot less of the absurdly low-end fares."
June 2006: US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) flew a combined 5.56 billion (RPM)s passenger traffic in May, a -7.7% drop from the year-ago month. Capacity declined -10.8% to 6.96 billion (ASM)s and load factor rose +2.7 points to 79.9% LF. US Airways (AMW)/(USA) mainline flew 3.24 billion (RPM)s, a -8.2% decrease, as capacity fell -12.9% to 4.05 billion (ASM)s. Load factor climbed +4 points to 79.9% LF.
US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) announced that Eastshore Aviation will sell 3.05 million shares of the group's common stock in an underwritten secondary offering. None of the proceeds of the offering, underwritten by Goldman, Sachs & Co., will go to the USA.
The carrier launched a daily Philadelphia - Portland, Oregon, service yesterday aboard an America West Airlines (AMW) A320 and a daily Phoenix - Kalispell, Montana, flight aboard a Mesa Airlines CRJ-200. From July 1 until August 19, the route will be operated by a (USA) A319.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) announced a significant expansion of frequencies across its domestic network. It will add 106 one-way flights to its schedule beginning August 21 to/from its bases at Phoenix, Las Vegas, Charlotte, Philadelphia, Washington National and New York LaGuardia. The largest increase is at Charlotte, with the addition of frequencies on 13 city-pairs and the launch of thrice-daily service to New York (JFK). (AMW)/(USA) also will launch a daily Orlando International - Key West service on September 6 to be operated by a Republic Airways Embraer EMB-170. It has been operating at decreasing traffic and capacity levels in recent months. US Airways (AMW)/(USA) was awarded two daily slot exemptions at Reagan Washington National Airport for a new service to Sarasota/Bradenton to be launched by August 15. The slots became available when Spirit Airlines (SPR) ceased service to Myrtle Beach on November 10, according to the USA Department of Transportation, which said AirTran Airways (CQT) and Comair (COI) also applied for the exemptions.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) will reduce service at Fort Lauderdale from Sep tember 5th as follows to:
Cancun = reduced to 1 flight a week;
Charlotte = reduced from 7 to 6 flights a day;
Key West = reduced from 3 to 2 flights a day;
Kingston = service discontinued;
New York (LGA) = service discontinued;
Philadelphia = reduced from 6 to 5 flights a day;
Phoenix = reduced from 2 to 1 flight a day;
Santo Domingo = service discontinued.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) will double the frequency of flights from Las Vegas to Fort Lauderdale on August 14th. The airline will add a 2nd daily flight using an A320. The existing flight operates with a 757-200.
737-301 (23258, N236AW), WFU at Phoenix.
July 2006: US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) flew a combined 5.87 billion (RPM)s passenger traffic in June, a -5.8% drop from the year-ago month. Capacity fell -8.6% to 7 billion (ASM)s and load factor rose +2.5 points to 83.8% LF. Domestic (RPM)s declined -7.6% to 4.69 billion against a -11% fall in capacity to 5.6 billion (ASM)s. International (RPM)s rose +2.1% to 1.18 billion and (ASM)s increased +2.2% to 1.41 billion.
The merger of US Airways Group (USA) and America West Airlines (AMW) continues to pay big dividends, according to President and CEO, Doug Parker, who said it was the "primary driver" behind second-quarter net earnings of +$305 million for the combined company.
Although results are not directly comparable to the year-ago period when the airlines operated independently, the figure represents a significant improvement over an approximate combined pro forma loss of -$46 million by the constituent companies, America West Airlines (-$2 million) and US Airways Inc (-$44 million), in the 2005 quarter. In the 2006 quarter, US earned $246 million on a standalone basis and AWA earned $68 million. The result includes $35 million in merger-related transition expenses and $25 million in special gains.
"While other airlines are reporting second-quarter profits, no other airline has experienced an improvement as dramatic as US Airways, as evidenced by our second-quarter 2006 profit margin, which is the highest among the Major hub-and-spoke airlines and a remarkable reversal from recent years," Parker said. "Looking forward, we are encouraged by a continuing strong revenue environment and an industry that is keeping capacity in check. We anticipate a profitable third quarter and full year 2006."
Group revenues of $3.19 billion were +14.1% higher than the $2.8 billion generated by the two airlines on a pro forma basis in the year-ago quarter. Expenses climbed just +4.7% to $2.85 billion. The operating profit of +$342 million compares to the +$74 million earned by US and AWA last year.
US Airways mainline flew 9.91 billion RPMs during the quarter, a decline of 7.6%. Capacity dropped 12.8% to 12.06 billion ASMs and load factor rose 4.6 points to 82.2%. Yield increased 16.9% to 14.52 cents and passenger RASM jumped 23.8% to 11.94 cents. Operating CASM was up 14.3% to 11.72 cents, or 7.9% to 8.08 cents excluding fuel and special items.
AWA mainline RPMs dipped 2.3% to 6.24 billion as capacity declined at the same rate to 7.58 billion ASMs. Load factor was level at 82.3%. Yield rose 16.4% to 11.97 cents and passenger RASM increased 16.3% to 9.85 cents. Unit costs were up 12.7% to 10.05 cents and grew 7.4% excluding special items, fuel and gains on hedging instruments to 6.92 cents.
The group posted a profit of $370 million in the first six months of 2006 compared to a pro forma loss of $478 million in the year-ago semester. It said it remains on schedule to combine the two operating certificates into one by this time next year.
Air Canada (ACN)'s parent (ACE) Aviation Holdings announced the sale of an additional 2.75 million shares of US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) stock in June and July "through a series of transactions on the open stock market," that netted proceeds of +$137.9 million. Air Canada (ACN)'s parent said it has earned +$205.5 million from the sale of shares in its Star Alliance partner from an initial investment of $75 million in September 2005. (ACE) still holds 500,000 shares.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) signed a five-year, full-content distribution agreement with Worldspan.
The airline also unveiled an expanded codeshare agreement with Star Alliance partner (TAP) Portugal to include additional destinations on both sides of the Atlantic.
It will launch thrice-weekly Las Vegas - Nashville service on October 5 with an A319.
737-301 (23258), returned to (GEF).
August 2006: US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) flew 6.08 billion consolidated (RPM)s passenger traffic in July, a -6% decline from the year-ago month. Capacity fell -7.8% to 7.27 billion (ASM)s and load factor rose +1.5 points to 83.5% LF. Domestic (RPM)s decreased -7.6% to 4.85 billion against a -10% decline in capacity to 5.78 billion (ASM)s. International traffic rose +0.7% to 1.23 billion (RPM)s and capacity increased +1.9% to 1.49 billion (ASM)s.
Expedia signed a five-year contract with US Airways (AMW)/(USA), making the carrier's inventory and services available on Expedia.com and its affiliated sites.
Discover the World Marketing said US Airways (AMW)/(USA) expanded its agreement to cover the carrier in Australia, China, Hong Kong, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, New Zealand, Norway, Philippines and Taiwan. Discover already represented (AMW)/(USA) in Argentina, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore, South Africa and Uruguay.
US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) named Compliance Officer, Janet Dhillon Senior VP & General Counsel, effective September 1. She replaces the retiring Jim Walsh.
US Airways (AMKW)/(USA) Executive VP & CAO, Jeffrey McClelland, 47, died Sunday, the airline announced. He had cancer. The carrier will rename its flight center building in Phoenix after McClelland, who was responsible for finance, legal affairs, human resources, labor relations, properties and facilities and subsidiary operations.
On a high after posting a second-quarter profit of +$305 million, US Airways (AMW)/(USA) announced an order for seven A321s and the conversion of existing orders for seven A319s and one A320 into an order for eight additional A321s.
Engine selection was not announced. Owing to the merger of US Airways (USA) and America West (AMW), the carrier operates a mix of (IAE) (V2500)- and (CFM56)-powered A320 family airplanes, although its A321s all are (CFM56)-powered, according to the Ascend CASE database.
Deliveries of the 15 183-seat, two-class airplanes will start in July 2008 and run through 2010. (USA) originally had placed an order for 30 A320 family airplanes. It said it has "certain conversion flexibility" with the remaining 22.
"This transaction provides important fleet flexibility to US Airways (AMW)/(USA)," said Chairman, President and CEO, Doug Parker. "The expanded and accelerated order positions will either allow US Airways (AMW)/(USA) to replace less efficient airplanes more quickly, or allow for modest expansion should market conditions warrant."
September 2006: US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) said its consolidated passenger (RASM) in August rose +15% over the year-ago month, an increase 3 - 4 points lower than forecast due to the terrorist alert. The company is revising its third-quarter unit revenue guidance to an increase in the "mid teens" from one in the "high teens." The group flew a combined 5.73 billion (RPM)s passenger traffic in August, down -5.3% from the year-ago month. Capacity fell -7.6% to 7.2 billion (ASM)s and load factor gained +1.9 points to 79.5% LF. Domestic (RPM)s dropped -6.1% to 4.6 billion against a -9.6% decline in (ASM)s to 5.77 billion. International traffic fell -2.3% to 1.13 billion (RPM)s and capacity rose +1% to 1.44 billion (ASM)s.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) Executive VP & COO, Jeffrey McClelland, 47, died Sunday, the airline announced. He had cancer. The carrier will rename its flight center building in Phoenix after McClelland, who was responsible for finance, legal affairs, human resources, labor
relations, properties and facilities and subsidiary operations.
US Airways (USA) named Thomas Chapman, VP Congressional & Federal Affairs effective October 16. Currently legislative counsel for Southwest Airlines (SWA), Chapman replaces the retiring Rosemary Murray.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) inaugurated nonstop service from Charlotte to New York (JFK). US Airways (AMW)/(USA) Express now operates 3 flights a day on the route using CRJ-900s.
Jouve Aviation Solutions said US Airways (AMW)/(USA) selected its AirGTI suite of products to manage and distribute technical information. US Airways (USA) is in the process of merging its technical content, including operating procedure and airframe and engine manuals, with those of America West (AMW).
October 2006: US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) flew 4.76 billion (RPM)s passenger traffic in September, a -4.8% decline from the year-ago month. Capacity dropped -4.2% to 6.6 billion (ASM)s and load factor fell -0.5 point to 72.2% LF. Domestic (RPM)s decreased -5.3% to 3.86 billion and (ASM)s were down -5.1% to 5.38 billion. International (RPM)s fell -2.5% to 900.1 million against +0.1% lift in capacity to 1.21 billion (ASM)s.
US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) reported a third-quarter net loss of -$78 million, narrowed from a -$99 million net loss in the year-ago quarter by the then-America West (AMW) Holdings, which was considered the acquiring company in last year's merger.
The company said it earned a +$101 million net profit in the quarter, excluding special items that included costs associated with fuel hedging contracts and expenses, related to merger activities. CEO, Doug Parker said the results were "further evidence" of the merger's success and projected "reporting a profit in the seasonally difficult fourth quarter." He noted that increases in security in August "negatively impacted revenue by -$30 million to -$40 million."
On a standalone basis, America West Airlines (AMW) reported a net loss of -$100 million, including special items, widened from a loss of -$83 million in the year-ago quarter. US Airways (USA) reported a standalone net profit of +$38 million, including special items compared to a reported profit of +$584 million last year.
Consolidated operating revenues were $2.97 billion, widened from $929 million in revenues generated by America West (AMW) Holdings in the year-ago quarter. Expenses totaled $2.95 billion, producing an operating profit of +$16 million.
On a standalone basis, America West Airlines (AMW) revenues grew +8.6% to $922 million, while expenses rose +12% to $1.03 billion, producing an operating loss of -$106 million, down -53.6% from -$69 million. Mainline yield improved +13% to 11.65 cents as (RPM)s fell -4.6% to 6.04 billion on a -3.9% drop in capacity to 7.57 billion (ASM)s. Load factor was 79.8% LF, down -0.6 point. (RASM) was up +12.2% to 9.3 cents while (CASM) rose +17.4% to 11.47 cents.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) named Scott Kirby, 39, to the position of President, effective October 1. Kirby, an 11-year veteran of America West (AMW), which acquired and merged with US Airways (USA) last year, was Executive VP Sales & Marketing. He will continue to report to Chairman and CEO, Doug Parker. The carrier also promoted Ed Bular to Senior VP Flight Operations/Inflight. Bular joined the US Airways (USA) side of the family in 1980, three years before America West (AMW) came into existence.
In tandem with the appointments, the company announced a management reorganization. Executive VP and COO, Al Crellin assumed additional responsibilities for the airline's two wholly owned subsidiaries, PSA and Piedmont. Senior VP Customer Service, Anthony Mule took on the reservations department and cargo operations. CFO, Derek Kerr added corporate real estate (properties and facilities) functions to his portfolio. Elise Eberwein, currently senior VP Corporate Communications, also gets Human Resources as Senior VP People, Communication & Culture. Associate General Counsel & Managing Director Legal, Michael Minerva was promoted to VP Legal.
Later, US Airways (AMW)/(USA) said Executive VP Operations, Al Crellin has resigned effective November 15.
USA legacy carriers have made substantial progress in becoming more competitive but still trail low-cost carriers in a number of areas related to labor efficiency, a new analysis by the USA Department of Transportation's Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) confirms. The analysis, based on Form 41 data filed by seven network carriers, and seven budget airlines, reveals that Low Cost Carriers (LCC)s reduced the number of full-time-equivalent employees (FTE) per airplane by -16%, from 92 in the first quarter of 2001 to 77 in the first quarter of 2006, while the network carriers reduced their (FTE)s per airplane by -23% but still averaged 99 at the end of the study period, +28.6% higher than the (LCC) group.
Among network carriers, United Airlines (UAL) showed the largest gain as (FTE)s dropped -27.5% from 160 to 116. US Airways (USA) (which was counted in the network group, while America West Airlines (AMW) was included in the (LCC) group), and Northwest Airlines (NWA) had the fewest employees per airplane at the end of the first quarter with 82.
In terms of percentage reduction in (FTE)s, JetBlue Airways (JBL) led the low-cost group as it went from 127 in 2001 to 95 in 2006. In numeric terms, however, most (LCC)s did better: Spirit Airlines (SPR)had 62 (FTE)s per airplane as of the 2006 first quarter, followed by AirTran Airways (CQT) (64), Southwest Airlines (SWA) (70) and America West (AMW) (83).
The (LCC)s also boarded an average of +67% more passengers per (FTE) than their network counterparts, 195 to 117. Southwest (SWA) led all airlines at 234 enplanements per (FTE) in the first quarter, up from 203 five years earlier. On a percentage basis, AirTran (CQT)performed better, rising from 173 to 220. Among network airlines, (USA) led the group with 149 enplanements and (UAL) lagged at 102, although this was up from 65 in 2001. Overall, the network group improved from an average of 85 enplanements per (FTE) to 117, while the (LCC) group rose from 164 to 195.
Turning to compensation (salary plus benefits), network carriers reduced their annual compensation cost gap to $7,514 compared to $22,139 in 2001, (BTS) reported. Southwest (SWA)'s average annual compensation led the industry at $95,555. Among legacy airlines, (NWA) was highest at $91,613, and (USA) was the lowest at $73,642. Among the (LCC)s, Frontier Airlines (FRO) had the lowest average employee compensation at $55,432 and AirTran (CQT) was second-lowest at $59,637.
Informatica Corp announced that US Airways (AMW)/(USA) selected its PowerCenter data integration platform and PowerExchange data-access software.
November 2006: US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) continued its one-airline assault on the US airline market structure with an $8 billion bid to merge with Delta Air Lines (DAL) as part of that carrier's bankruptcy restructuring.
The bid comes as US Airways (USA) and America West Airlines (AMW)continue their own integration into a single airline after America West (AMW) acquired US Airways Group (USA) out of bankruptcy in 2005.
But (USA) will need to overcome opposition from Delta (DAL) CEO, Gerald Grinstein, who rejected the same offer in mid-October, when it was proposed in a letter from (USA)/(AMW) Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker. In a statement, (DAL) said it favors emerging from Chapter 11 as "a standalone carrier." (AMW)/(USA) also must win the support of unsecured creditors and the bankruptcy court and convince the USA Department of Justice that the merger will not hurt competition.
"There are no antitrust issues that can't be resolved," Parker said. (AMW)/(USA) and (DAL) operate the two East Coast Shuttles between Boston, New York and Washington, but Parker said the merger plan "contemplates selling one of [them]."
(AMW)/(USA) valued its offer at $8 billion in cash and stock, and said the merger would generate annual synergies of $1.65 billion. However, Parker emphasized that half the synergies "will be lost" if the merger is delayed until after Delta (DAL) emerges from Chapter 11 protection. "Bankruptcy gives you a tremendous amount of leverage you don't have, when you come out of it," he explained. Citing the experience of the America West (AMW) - US Airways (USA) merger completed last year, he said, "bankruptcy gave us the opportunity to go through and renegotiate every contract."
In particular, the merged carrier, which would retain the Delta (DAL) name, would cut capacity by -10% and expects to use the reorganization process to achieve much of that. Capacity would come out of both mainline and regional fleets.
Under the proposal, Delta (DAL) creditors would receive $4 billion in cash and 78.5 million shares of US stock with an aggregate value of $4 billion based on the closing price the day before the proposal. Citigroup has committed to provide $7.2 billion in new financing.
Synergies come from combining the route networks ($935 million) and cost reductions ($710 million). Parker said that in calculating the cost synergies, (AMW)/(USA) assumed it would move "to the highest of the existing labor costs in every group," reducing savings by -$90 million. Although the workforce would be reduced, (AMW)/(USA) expects to achieve its goals through attrition and "not furloughs." Parker noted that (AMW)/(USA) has begun hiring in all work groups.
Assuming the merger is consummated, the new Delta (DAL) will be the largest domestic carrier, with an 18.2% (ASM) capacity share based on first-half 2006 performance, and the largest across the Atlantic. "This is an extremely exciting opportunity for us, one that will create one of the world's largest airlines," Parker stated.
The USA airline industry is taking stock of US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA)'s $8 billion takeover bid for bankrupt Delta Air Lines (DAL), a deal that would reshape the landscape of the world's largest commercial aviation market, but must overcome significant hurdles before coming to fruition.
Delta (DAL) management, for one, is opposed to the transaction and has vowed to press ahead with filing its own reorganization plan in bankruptcy court, which it has the exclusive right to do until February 15. Ultimately it may come down to competing reorganization plans that will have to be evaluated by Delta (DAL)'s unsecured creditors, according to Merrill Lynch Senior Airline Analyst, Michael Linenberg. "You're going to have to win the hearts and minds of the creditors," he said during a conference call yesterday, noting that (DAL) executives must tread carefully to avoid being "accused of looking out for their own interest rather than those of creditors."
The takeover would be a blockbuster no matter how it is valued, but Linenberg asserted that the "true transactional value" actually would be "closer to $18 billion" because (AMW)/(USA) would be taking on nearly $10 billion of Delta (DAL)'s secured debt. That may be difficult for (DAL), given its Chapter 11 status, to turn down.
Standard & Poor's Ratings Services said in a commentary that Delta (DAL) "needs the support of its unsecured creditors - - the future shareholders - - to implement a plan of reorganization, which could place pressure on management to enter into merger negotiations."
Also complicating (AMW)/(USA)'s efforts is a likely review by the USA Department of Justice (DOJ), which prevented a merger between the former US Airways (USA) and United Airlines (UAL), that was proposed in 2000. "Obviously, this is a big deal, so it's most likely not going to get a first-look pass," a (DOJ) spokesperson said. "Either (DOJ) or the [Federal Trade Commission] would take on an investigation and take a closer look . . . We are aware [of the proposal] and we're interested in taking a closer look. We'd be looking at competitive effects, and how it would affect consumers." (DOJ) declined to put a timeline on such an investigation, which would not start until an actual merger agreement was reached and relevant regulatory filings were made by the carriers.
Linenberg pointed out that USA airlines have gone through massive changes in the last five years and (DOJ)'s concern that the proposed merger would lead to diminished service, yet higher fares "may no longer hold water." One key change is that Low Cost Carriers (LCC)s now control more than 30% of the domestic market, up from 15% - 18% in the late 1990s, and are present in markets that account for 95% of domestic airline revenues. "That keeps the major carriers in check" and prevents significant fare hikes, he said.
For example, the Department of Transportation (DOT) announced that Southwest Airlines (SWA) carried more passengers on its network in August than any other USA carrier, the first time it or any (LCC) has finished first in that category. Southwest (SWA) has been the leading domestic passenger airline since May 2003, according to (DOT).
Also in (AMW)/(USA)'s favor, analysts said, is the credibility gained from the apparent successful integration of the former US Airways (USA) and America West Airlines (AMW).
But there clearly is potential opposition from various players, including the US Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp, which is saddled with funding much of Delta (DAL) 's terminated pilot (FC) pension plan and likely would seek some kind of accommodation from the USA.
Nevertheless, analysts and investors are busy examining how the merger would change the USA airline business. JP Morgan projects domestic capacity may be "as much as -3% lower," which it believes is a positive for investors since flat capacity has "propelled earnings and equity values in 2006." (AMW)/(USA) has said its plan would slash -10% of the "new Delta (DAL)'s" combined capacity and JP Morgan noted that Delta (DAL)'s 118 MD-80s and 16 MD-90s "are clearly some of the least desirable airplanes from a fuel burn perspective and are likely candidates for removal."
US Airways (AMW)/(USA)'s bid to acquire bankrupt Delta Air Lines (DAL) raises questions about the future of the regional airlines that have service agreements with the mainline carriers and compete on a number of routes.
As part of the proposal, (AMW)/(USA) said it would reduce overall fleet capacity by -10%, but did not say from where the cuts would come. "Who knows what will happen," asked Doug Abbey, an analyst with The Velocity Group. "For Delta Connection carriers it now means there is even a larger pool of potential competitors. It's logical that people like Mesa and Republic would try to leverage that for a larger franchise," he said.
A carrier like Comair (COI), a bankrupt (DAL) subsidiary, that has had significant operational problems, could face drastic cuts or even be shut down, Abbey and others have suggested. "The bigger question is what happens to the networks," he said. "It could be a total reapportionment with some 15 different partners."
JP Morgan analysts note that Republic Airways could be at risk because of its heavy investment in flying 50-seat regional jets for Delta (DAL). Republic has not had its contract affirmed by the bankruptcy court, according to JPM, leaving it exposed with some 49 small RJs. JPM concluded that the proposed merger "will most likely bode negatively for the regional sector as a whole."
But Abbey disagreed. "The business model for the regional remains intact," he said. "That hasn't changed. Ultimately, the mission they provide is unassailable. The majors can't operate 70-seaters or certainly 50-seaters."
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) also acknowledged that the merger likely would require it to divest one of two East Coast Shuttles currently operated by the carriers between Boston, New York and Washington. (DAL) acquired its shuttle in 1991 from Pan Am during that ill-fated carrier's bankruptcy proceedings, while (USA) acquired its shuttle operation from creditors of Donald Trump, who had purchased it from failing Eastern Airlines (EAL).
If the two shuttles aren't merged into a single operation, there is speculation that East Coast Low Cost Carriers (LCC)s JetBlue (JBL) or AirTran (CQT) could be suitors. "It's too early to speculate on what assets will be available," JetBlue (JBL) spokesperson, Bryan Baldwin said. "We will just have to wait and see how things go."
US Airways (USA) and America West Airlines (AMW) pilot (FC) groups, represented by the Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA), conducted informational picketing in Charlotte and Phoenix, upset that the company is looking to acquire Delta Air Lines (DAL) even though it "has yet to complete the integration of the pilot groups that is required" by terms of last year's (USA)/(AMW) merger.
"So far, the company's empty promises have failed to capture all the synergies that just the US Airways (USA)/America West (AMW) merger can provide," US Airways (USA) (ALPA) MEC Chairman, Jack Stephan said.
"We recognize US Airways (AMW)/(USA) senior management's enthusiasm for a merger with Delta (DAL). However, before it can be successful, management must first focus on fulfilling the promises made to their investors, customers and employees," (AMW) MEC Chairman, Kevin Kent added.
(USA) pilots' desire to share in the company's improving financial situation has been a source of recent tension (the picketing was planned before Wednesday's announcement), but it appears to have been exacerbated by the Delta (DAL) bid. "US Airways (AMW)/(USA) has posted remarkable profits for three consecutive quarters due to the efforts of frontline employees such as the pilots, yet they refuse to fully engage in negotiations for a contract that recognizes our contributions," Kent concluded.
(ALPA) said from Washington that "pilots shouldn't be surprised" by the merger and that the union "will be intensely involved in defending our members' interests as this deal and any others are considered."
(AMW)/(USA) flight attendants (CA), represented by the Association of Flight Attendants (AFA) - CWA, were more reserved, saying only that (USA) "wants to continue the process of merging US Airways (USA) and America West (AMW) labor contracts and operations prior to the potential Delta (DAL) merger," which would occur "in excess of eight months." The union said its MEC would be briefed by (AFA) attorneys on the issues that may result from nonunionized Delta (DAL) cabin staff working without a collective bargaining agreement.
The International Association of Machinists (IAM) and Aerospace Workers, which represents more than 10,000 maintenance (MT) and fleet service workers at (USA), also expressed concern over the timing of the Delta (DAL) deal, saying, "If US Airways (AMW)/(USA) hopes to complete a successful merger with Delta (DAL) or any other airline, they must first conclude the ongoing negotiations with the Machinists Union regarding the integration of America West (AMW) employees into US Airways (USA)." IAM General VP Robert Roach Jr. said US CEO Doug Parker "contacted me and indicated a desire to work with the Machinists Union. We are prepared to work together as long as all affected employees' interests are fully protected."
(IAM) told The Philadelphia Inquirer that Delta (DAL) baggage handlers had contacted the union. "One of the biggest issues they had was that they feared being lost in a merger between Delta (DAL)and a unionized carrier," an (IAM) spokesperson told the paper.
Delta (DAL) pilots (FC), the only large unionized (ALPA) work group at the carrier, said, "Merger and acquisition talks are a part of normal business in the airline industry and in particular when bankruptcy scenarios are involved. The Delta (DAL) MEC has expended considerable effort over the past year to ensure we are prepared for any eventuality and that we can fight to preserve the best interests of the Delta (DAL) pilots in any potential merger or acquisition scenario."
Calling itself "a pro-consumer maverick," US Airways (AMW)/(USA) moved quickly to head off an antitrust challenge to its proposed $8 billion takeover of Delta Air Lines (DAL), asserting in a government filing that the "New Delta (DAL)" will offer "consumer-friendly fares" and will not stifle competition in a market in which Low Cost Carriers (LCC)s play a significant role.
Delta (DAL) CEO, Gerald Grinstein, meanwhile, reportedly held multiple conference calls with the bankrupt carrier's creditors to argue against the takeover and for Delta (DAL)'s re-emergence from Chapter 11 as a standalone airline. Creditors will play a big role in determining the fate of (DAL), and both Grinstein and (AMW)/(USA) Chairman and CEO, Doug Parker likely will court them aggressively.
The merger also could be derailed by USA Departmen of Justice antitrust officials, who blocked the proposed merger of the former US Airways (USA) and United Airlines (UAL) on grounds that it was anticompetitive and likely would offer consumers diminished service for higher fares. In a filing with the USA Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC), US Airways (AMW)/(USA) argued that the domestic "airline industry will remain unconcentrated" after the merger and that the rise of (LCC)s since 2000 ensures robust competition.
(AMW)/(USA) said the combined carrier will use the Delta (DAL) name and would have a domestic market share of 18.2% based on capacity (ASM)s. "The Department of Justice has not challenged a merger in over 30 years, where the leading firm has less than a 30% market share," the carrier said in the filing. It added that a projected $1.65 billion in synergies generated by the proposed merger "are real and can be achieved. The expected synergies should overcome any theoretical antitrust concerns about the merger."
(AMW)/(USA) also emphasized "rapid (LCC) growth since 2000," arguing that the USA airline market has changed fundamentally since the (UAL)/(USA) merger was rejected. "Today's airline industry is far more competitive than at the start of the decade," (AMW)/(USA) said. "In 2000, (LCC)s carried only 13% of East Coast traffic vs. 34% in 2006. Since 2000, JetBlue (JBL) and Frontier (FRO) have joined Southwest (SWA) and AirTran (CQT) as truly national carriers."
Even (SWA), already firmly established as a major force in 2000, has emerged in the last five years as a transcontinental carrier after formerly avoiding long-haul domestic flights, (AMW)/(USA) said, noting that "today the carrier flies between the East and West coasts from numerous cities . . . A combined US Airways (AMW)/(USA)/Delta (DAL) will face significant competition at most of the carrier's hubs . . . After a merger, 81% of US Airways (AMW)/(USA)/Delta (DAL) passengers will have (LCC) competition at their local airport. An additional +13% will have access to (LCC) service within 100 miles."
(AMW)/(USA) reminded the (SEC) that its management team "began at America West Airlines (AMW), which has a history as an industry maverick . . . Since the merger with US Airways (USA), the airline has continued to be a pro-consumer maverick [by reducing both business and leisure fares]. The new Delta (DAL) would continue to be a low-cost maverick."
Later, US Airways (AMW)/(USA) management will meet this week in New York with Delta Air Lines (DAL) executives and representatives of its unsecured creditors to detail its $8 billion takeover proposal. Daniel Golden, a lawyer for the committee representing the creditors in bankruptcy court, informed the Associated Press (AP) that the meeting would take place, but did not reveal the day.
The unsecured creditors are considered a key group in determining whether the (AMW)/(USA) takeover bid will be accepted, and Golden said they are open to hearing out the proposal, despite (DAL) executives' push to keep the bankrupt carrier independent. "We have great respect for Delta (DAL)'s management," he told (AP). "We think they've done a very good job in Chapter 11. But at the end of the day, we're going to make a determination about what works best for the estate, and the unsecured creditors . . . We have a job to do, which is to maximize recoveries for unsecured creditors."
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) presented its case for a takeover of Delta Air Lines (DAL) to (DAL) management and representatives of its creditors' committee.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker said, "We reviewed our offer and had a chance to engage in discussions on the many facets of this proposal. While we recognize the steps that Delta (DAL) management has taken, we are confident that our proposal for a 'New' Delta (DAL) will create more value than a standalone plan."
A post-meeting statement from (DAL) called the meeting an "obligation" and reiterated the airline's intention to emerge from bankruptcy as an independent carrier.
Meanwhile, Delta (DAL) posted a -$88 million loss in October, an improvement from a -$301 million loss in the year-ago month. Loss excluding reorganization items, was -$64 million, compared to -$260 million in October 2005. Operating loss narrowed to -$9 million from -$196 million as expenses fell -6.9%. (DAL) said stage-length-adjusted passenger (RASM) rose +15.1% year-over-year, compared to an industry average +6.2%. Consolidated unit costs dropped -2.5% and mainline (CASM) excluding fuel, fell -4.1% to 7.12 cents.
Executive VP & CFO, Edward Bastian said the result signified "strong progress on every front [and] reinforces our confidence that we will emerge from bankruptcy as a strong, independent, standalone competitor in today's global industry."
In a separate but deeply ironic announcement, Delta (DAL) said it will launch daily New York (JFK) - Phoenix service on February 15 aboard a 737-800.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) will inaugurate nonstop service from Las Vegas to West Palm Beach on February 11th. The airline will operate 4 flights a week, on Mondays, Thursdays, Fridays & Sundays, using an A320.
(AT&T) signed a $7 million networking equipment agreement with US Airways (AMW)/(USA) under which (AT&T) will provide Cisco hardware bundled with its (MPLS)-based (IP) network to service more than 230 airport locations.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) ordered Blended Winglets for seven 757-200 airplanes, for retrofit beginning in January 2007. The airplanes are to be Performance Enhanced with Aviation Partners Boeing (APB) revolutionary patented Blended Winglet Technology, which would be utilized on scheduled Extended Twin-engine OPerationS (ETOPS) service between the USA East Coast and Europe.
On trans-Atlantic operations to and from Philadelphia, US Airways (AMW)/(USA) said, it would benefit from a 200 nautical mile Blended Winglet range boost and projected fuel savings of more than 1,000 gallons per round trip.
December 2006: US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) flew 4.97 billion combined (RPM)s passenger traffic in November, a +1% increase over the year-ago month. Capacity fell -2.3% to 6.39 billion (ASM)s and load factor climbed +2.6 points to 77.8% LF.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker reiterated his company's commitment to its proposed $8 billion takeover of bankrupt Delta Air Lines (DAL), calling on (DAL)'s board and creditors' committee to begin due diligence on the merger offer.
Parker's statement came a day after he told "USA Today" that the merger is "not going to happen" unless Delta (DAL) management, which repeatedly has opposed the (AMW)/(USA) plan, endorses the offer and works "together" with (AMW)/(USA) to implement the merger. He said (DAL) executives need to be convinced "that this plan makes sense."
But recently he issued a statement insisting that (AMW)/(USA) is "absolutely determined to take necessary steps to move the process forward," adding, "We at US Airways (AMW)/(USA) are fully committed to our proposal to merge with Delta (DAL)."
Parker noted that (AMW)/(USA) held meetings last week with (DAL) management and creditors, making the case that the merger "will create a strong, healthy airline, able to compete long into the future in any industry scenario, benefiting our employees, customers and the communities we serve, as well as providing Delta's creditors with the opportunity to receive far greater recoveries than what they will receive under any Delta (DAL) standalone plan."
Air Line Pilots Association Delta (DAL) (MEC) Chairman, Lee Moak, who previously had voiced skepticism regarding the merger, said the pilots (FC) will officially oppose the plan, warning that (AMKW)/(USA) could fire (DAL) workers "at will" after it completed the takeover.
AirTran Airways (CQT) would be interested in acquiring assets from Delta Air Lines (DAL) or US Airways (AMW)/(USA) if those carriers need to make sales to alleviate anticompetitive concerns in order to facilitate a potential merger, President and COO, Bob Fornaro said.
Speaking at the Calyon Securities Airline Conference in New York, which was available via webcast, Fornaro noted that AirTran (CQT) has a strong presence in markets where (DAL) and (AMW)/(USA) rank among the top two or three carriers and likely would need to reduce their presence to appease antitrust regulators. As of next month, for example, AirTran (CQT) will operate 215 daily departures from (DAL)'s base hub at Atlanta Hartsfield. "If we felt we could buy something that would add value, we would do it," he said. "We could help create a solution" to facilitate the proposed (AMW)/(USA) takeover of (DAL).
He predicted that USA regulators "will be receptive" to a (AMW)/(USA)/(DAL) merger. "I think [the merger] has a chance because it could strengthen the industry and [prevent] airlines from coming back to [the USA government] in a few years with hat in hand."
Fornaro said East Coast shuttle operations may be less appealing to AirTran (CQT), because much of the revenue on those flights comes from prearranged corporate deals. "The shuttle is really a question mark," he explained. "We could operate those routes very profitably but I'm not sure we could take advantage of all the corporate sales. Our interest [in shuttle operations] would probably be low."
He said expansion through consolidation may be USA carriers' best bet, because buying new planes will not be easy. "My assessment is that for at least the next two years, [the airplane] is going to be very tight, and if you want to get a plane, you'll have to pay a premium for it. And it's hard to pay a premium for airplanes and make money in a competitive market like the domestic USA."
Speaking at the same conference, Southwest Airlines (SWA) President, Colleen Barrett said the Low Cost Carrier (LCC) wants to buy more airplanes, even though it has 37 737-700s on order for delivery next year. "We're still out there looking for airplanes at the right price," she said. While most USA carriers have minimized capacity growth this year, a confident (SWA) will up capacity (ASM)s by +10% this quarter.
Barrett said (AMW)/(USA)'s $8 billion takeover offer for (DAL) is "serious and substantial, and is something the creditors are going to have to take a look at." CEO, Gary Kelly recently said (SWA) is interested in airplanes, airport gates and slots at East Coast airports, that may become available as a result of a (AMW)/(USA)/(DAL) merger.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker said that the assumptions underlying Delta Air Lines (DAL)'s standalone reorganization plan are "out of whack" and that warnings of a (AMW)/(USA)/(DAL) merger being derailed by antitrust issues are "misleading" and "superficial."
In a wide-ranging conference call with analysts, Parker said (AMW)/(USA) management felt it was necessary to respond strongly to (DAL)'s assertions that its standalone reorganization plan offered more value to creditors than (AMW)/(USA)'s $8 billion takeover proposal and that the USA Dept of Justice (DOJ)likely would reject a merger on antitrust grounds.
"We think their valuation [$9.4 to $12 billion] is way out of whack," Parker said. "Delta (DAL) coming out and saying they're worth as much as Southwest (SWA) doesn't pass the smell test. [(DAL)'s analysis] has all sorts of flaws in it . . . Delta (DAL)'s valuation clearly lacks credibility by any sort of standard."
Likewise, (AMW)/(USA) insisted (DAL) made a "severely flawed" argument regarding antitrust issues. Rick Rule, (AMW)/(USA)'s lead antitrust attorney, said he had "painstakingly gone through [the proposal] on a city-pair by city-pair basis" to make sure it did not create an anticompetitive situation in the USA market. "Delta (DAL)'s analysis and objections are superficial and don't really represent the current situation at (DOJ)," he said, noting that DL's claim that a merged carrier would have "monopoly power on 2,000 city-pairs" confuses airport pairs with city-pairs.
"They have focused on airport pairs when (DOJ) in fact focuses on city-pairs," Rule said, pointing to the example of the Washington market, where he insisted (DOJ) views National and Dulles airports as a single market. An airline would have to control significant numbers of gates at each airport to have a monopoly position. "Antitrust issues are fully manageable," Parker said. "We are not going to let this transaction fail on antitrust issues."
(AMW)/(USA) called on (DAL) to file initial merger papers with (DOJ) so it could begin an evaluation and provide antitrust "feedback" to the carriers. "Let's just go find out" if there are antitrust barriers to a merger, Parker said.
He also dismissed (DAL) CEO, Gerald Grinstein's warnings over the projected $23 billion in debt that a merged airline would carry. "That's what happens when you have bigger companies," he said, arguing that (AMW)/(USA) has the "strongest balance sheet" in the domestic airline industry and knows how to manage debt.
Parker conceded that (DAL) management is "intent upon emerging [from Chapter 11] standalone," but added: "Management doesn't own the company. The creditors do . . . The real game is being played with the creditors."
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) reached agreement with the Transport Workers Union on a single contract for flight dispatchers, bringing dispatchers from America West Airlines (AMW) and the former US Airways (USA) under one labor deal. (AMW)/(USA) said the accord is another step toward receiving one (FAA) air operating certificate (AOC) next year that formally would merge the two carriers.
Earlier, (DAL) CFO, Ed Bastian projected a full-year net loss of -$350 million excluding reorganization items, which would be an improvement of nearly +$2 billion from last year's deficit of -$2.2 billion excluding reorganization items. Including reorganization items, Delta (DAL) lost -$3.8 billion last year. Bastian projected net income for 2007 of +$450 million but cautioned that capacity will grow only +1% to +2% next year, including a -3% to -4% reduction in domestic capacity. "Growth will certainly be modest over the next couple of years," he said.
Starting January 8, Phoenix - Miami, 1/day, using A319s; & Pittsburgh - Miami, increased to 7/week, using 737-300s. Starting February 11th, Las Vewgas - West Palm Beach, 4/week, using A320s.
1st EMB-190 (00058, N944UW) delivery - see photo.
January 2007: US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) reported 2006 net income of +$303 million, reversed from a pro forma net loss of -$335 million in 2005, results that Chairman & (CEO), Doug Parker said put the carrier in such a strong position, that "we're not going to keep chasing" a merger with Delta Air Lines (DAL) if (DAL)'s creditors' committee doesn't meet (AMW)/(USA)'s February 1 deadline.
Full-year 2006 revenue was $11.56 billion, more than double the $5.07 billion in pro forma revenue for 2005. (AMW)/(USA)'s pro forma 2005 results comprise America West Airlines (AMW)'s results through the September 27 (AMW)/(USA) merger and those of the combined carriers for the year's final 96 days.
(AMW)/(USA) announced a long-haul expansion from its Philadelphia hub, that Chairman & (CEO), Doug Parker said "demonstrate[s] our commitment to . . . our international growth prospects." Subject to foreign regulatory approval, (AMW)/(USA) will start 767 service to Athens on May 25, 757 flights to Brussels on June 1, and 767 flights to Zurich on June 8. All services will be daily. Athens flights end October 6, with the remaining routes operating year-round. Next summer, (AMW)/(USA) will offer 22 daily flights to 19 European cities in 12 countries.
Parker also confirmed that he met earlier this week with former Continental Airlines (CAL) Chairman & (CEO), Gordon Bethune, who was hired by (DAL)'s creditors' committee as an adviser. "We would note that following Bethune's meeting with US Airways (AMW)/(USA), (AMW)/(USA) immediately raised its offer," pointing out that Bethune has "long [been] a supporter of industry consolidation."
February 2007: After more than two months of back-and-forth rhetoric, that spurred speculation of widespread USA airline industry consolidation, US Airways (AMW)/(USA) withdrew its $10.2 billion offer to acquire Delta Air Lines (DAL), saying it was "now clear" the official (DAL) creditors' committee would not back the bid "in a timely or productive manner."
Said (AMW)/(USA) Chairman & (CEO), Doug Parker, "We are disappointed that the committee, which has been chosen to act on behalf of all (DAL) creditors, is ignoring its fiduciary obligation to those creditors. Our proposal would have provided substantially more value."
The withdrawal came a day after (AMW)/(USA) posted a +$303 million net profit for 2006, results that Parker said reaffirm the 2005 America West Airlines (AMW)/US Airways (USA) merger.
Airline merger talk in the USA market is expected to cool following US Airways (AMW)/(USA)'s withdrawal of its offer for Delta Air Lines (DAL), particularly with many carriers posting their best earnings since the late 1990s.
(AMW)/(USA)'s attempt to acquire (DAL) forced other airlines to survey the landscape and explore merger possibilities themselves; American Airlines (AAL), Northwest Airlines (NWA), Continental Airlines (CAL), and United Airlines (UAL) all reportedly hired merger advisers. But with (DAL) and (NWA) apparently on track to emerge from Chapter 11 later this year, the consolidation window may be closing, at least for the near term.
(NWA) President & (CEO), Doug Steenland said that the airline, a subject of merger speculation, plans to submit a plan of reorganization this month that will be "predicated on Northwest (NWA) being a standalone, independent airline."
Less than three weeks after (DAL) proposed to operate daily Atlanta - Shanghai Pudong service next year, (AMW)/(USA) revealed its intention to compete for the route scheduled to be awarded by the Dept of Transportation (dot) as part of the expansion of scheduled air services between the USA and China.
(AMW)/(USA) currently does not serve Asia, and did not identify a proposed USA gateway city in the announcement. Its long-haul fleet currently consists of A330-300s and 767-200ERs, neither of which would be considered optimum for the route. It has A330-200s and A350s on order.
But it appeared concerned that (DOT) would award the route to Delta (DAL) sooner than it made its decision in the last round of bidding, when it granted United Airlines (UAL) rights to operate Washington Dulles - Beijing service starting in March. Neither Delta (DAL), nor US Airways (AMW)/(USA) joined the competition, that included American Airlines (AAL), Northwest Airlines (NWA), and Continental Airlines (CAL). The latter three have not yet signaled their intention to compete for next year's award.
"US Airways (AMW)/(USA) urges (DOT) to defer consideration of Delta (DAL)'s application until there is the opportunity for full consideration of such other applications as may be submitted," it said in its filing. "Specifically, US Airways (AMW)/(USA) intends to apply for the designation and frequencies at issue, and it is presently coordinating its proposal with affected parties, including the USA gateways and communities it will serve."
The USA Senate Commerce and Transportation Committee approved legislation to require the screening of all cargo in the bellies of passenger airplanes within three years. The Transportation Security Administration last May approved a rule that did not include such a strict requirement. "The steps proposed in this bill will both improve our existing security system and give the Transportation Security Administration the flexibility to combat new and emerging threats," committee Chairman, Daniel Inouye (Democrat-Hawaii) said in a statement. It was not clear what types of screening will be acceptable. Passenger airlines have strongly opposed 100% screening of belly cargo on grounds that it is impractical and will slow airfreight flow greatly. While yesterday's legislative action was a first step toward possible passage, the proposed bill still is a long way from becoming law, which requires passage by the full Senate and House as well as President Bush's signature.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) said its largest shareholder, PAR Investment Partners, sold 6.5 million shares "as part of its portfolio diversification strategy." PAR still holds 7 million shares and will retain its seat on the board.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) chose Pittsburgh International Airport for a new $25 million, 60,000-sq-ft Flight Operations Control Center, that eventually will house approximately 600 employees and monitor 1,400 daily mainline flights. Groundbreaking is scheduled for later this year, and the center is expected to go live in early 2009. (AMW)/(USA) also considered Phoenix and Charlotte.
Twenty-two additional carriers reportedly have joined AirTran Airways (CQT), Alaska Airlines (ASA), ATA Airlines (AAT), Frontier Airlines (FRO), Midwest Airlines (MWX), Southwest Airlines (SWA), and US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) in filing a joint complaint with the USA Dept of Transportation (DOT) opposing new terminal charges at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), which this week broke ground on a $723.5 million renovation of its Bradley International Terminal. (LAX) raised fees on February 1 to help pay for "much-needed airport improvements," operator Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA) said in a statement in response to this month's original (DOT) filing by the initial seven carriers. "In recent years, (LAWA) has absorbed the increasing costs to maintain and operate its terminals and other facilities at (LAX) without passing these costs on to airline tenants," it said.
But the seven airlines "estimate the collective financial impact [of the new charges] over the next 15 to 20 years at more than >$1 billion, with a near-tripling of charges from $20 million to $56 million in the first year alone," they said in a joint statement. "(LAWA) is not a private commercial landlord," their (DOT) filing noted. "Rather, (LAWA) is a public utility with monopoly power over the airlines wishing to serve (LAX) . . . access to (LAX) on fair and nondiscriminatory terms is essential." (LAWA) responded that while the new charges "may not be well received by some airlines," its previous model for assessing rent "is outdated and does not reflect the current aviation environment."
March 2007: US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) flew 4.51 billion (RPM)s passenger traffic in February, up +1.9% from the year-ago month. Capacity rose +0.9% to 5.92 billion (ASM)s and load factor improved +0.7 point to 76.3% LF.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) said it entered into a commitment letter with Citigroup Global Markets and Morgan Stanley Senior Funding to arrange debt financing of up to $1.6 billion, that would permit the airline to refinance $1.26 billion of its existing senior secured credit facility, refinance $325 million of unsecured debt, and raise incremental liquidity. The transaction should be completed by the end of the current quarter, (AMW)/(USA) said.
US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) completed a $1.6 billion, seven-year debt refinancing transaction arranged by Citigroup Global Markets and Morgan Stanley Senior Funding, that it said will improve "liquidity over the next seven years by reducing principal payments and lowering near-term interest expense." Upon finalization of the refinancing, (AMW)/(USA) extinguished a $1.25 billion senior secured credit facility and a $325 million unsecured debt facility. The additional $25 million made available by the loan will be used for "general corporate purposes." The refinancing will reduce the company's debt amortization by approximately $92 million annually in 2008 to 2010 and $1.234 billion in 2011. In addition, interest expenses will be lowered by approximately -$14 million in 2007 and -$13 million in 2008. Senior VP & CFO, Derek Kerr said the refinanced loan allows the carrier to "meet our primary objectives of reducing borrowing costs, deferring debt maturities and reducing our covenant package."
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) said it distributed $58.7 million in profit sharing to employees. The profit-sharing program sets aside 10% of (AMW)/(USA)'s annual pre-tax profit excluding special items.
USA legacy airlines do not plan to ramp up capacity this year despite posting their best full-year financial results since 2000. "I think you'll continue to see very modest capacity growth, particularly domestically," Continental Airlines (CAL) Chairman & CEO, Larry Kellner told the JP Morgan Aviation and Transportation Conference, which was made available via webcast. The 11 largest USA carriers (including America West Airlines (AMW), part of US Airways (USA)Group) reported a -1% decrease in domestic capacity in 2006. American Airlines (AAL), Chairman & CEO, Gerard Arpey agreed that capacity growth again will be minimal, revealing that (AAL) plans a -1% domestic capacity reduction in 2007. "We're filling a greater number of seats than ever before and we're doing it without giving away the store," he said, noting (AAL)'s 80% LF load factor. "We've reached some hard truths about what customers are willing to pay for."
United Airlines (UAL) Executive VP & CFO, Jake Brace told the conference that there has been "what we would describe as a softening in demand" in the first quarter, a trend that argues for continued checks on (ASM) capacity growth. "We don't think it makes sense to add capacity in the domestic market," he said. Added US Airways (AMW)/(USA) President, Scott Kirby: "Right now capacity remains pretty benign and . . . that pretty benign capacity environment I think remains in place for the rest of the year."
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) announced that its proposed Shanghai service, scheduled to launch in March 2008 if approved by the USA Dept of Transportation, will originate in Philadelphia. It would be both the airline's and the airport's first service to Asia. (AMW)/(USA) said it is "close to making a decision on acquiring airplanes suitable" for the route and that it has "ample time and financial resources to do so."
Starting May 28th, Charlotte - Portland, Oregon, using A320s. Singapore Airlines (SIA) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) announced a codeshare deal under which (SIA) passengers to Los Angeles (LAX) or San Francisco (SFO) can connect to (AMW)/(USA) flights to Las Vegas, Phoenix and New York (JFK), via Charlotte. (AMW)/(USA) will place its code on (SIA)'s flights from (SFO) and (LAX), as well as on services to Amsterdam, Manchester and Zurich.
The merging of the US Airways (USA) and America West (AMW) reservations systems got a lot of attention because of the check-in problems that resulted in long lines at Philadelphia and Charlotte, but the "larger issue was the processing for closing a flight," US Airways (AMW)/(USA) President, Scott Kirby said. Kirby told analysts at the JPMorgan Aviation and Transportation Conference, that "we had made it needlessly complex to close a flight," a process that involves tallying passengers and bags and collecting other data before an airplane can push back from the gate. That compounded the problems that resulted from differences in the way the merged carriers' systems had handled changes in electronic tickets. The cutover, which moved the original US Airways (USA) onto the reservations platform used by America West (AMW), took place in the early morning of March 4. The former US Airways (USA) system allowed customers to make changes to their e-tickets and reconcile the changes after the fact in revenue accounting. The America West (AMW) system was designed to reconcile the changes on the spot. That meant that the merged carrier's e-tickets were "out of sync," Kirby said. "Web check-in didn't work and the kiosks wouldn't work. Agents had to manually work each one of passenger records." Worse yet, when flights were closed incorrectly, the e-ticket of every passenger on every affected flight was out of sync as well, he said.
Now that the worst is over, "it is much easier to deal with us now because we no longer have the negatives and difficulties associated with having two different reservations systems," Kirby said. Among the visible pluses for customers are new functionality for Web check-in and auto-upgrades. Previously, US Airways (USA) customers had to call to get on upgrade list, and "we had a clunky process on the former America West (AMW) side," Kirby said. "We've gotten positive feedback from our Elite customers on this. We feel good about where we are today."
General Electric (GE) has ruled out a variant of the Engine Alliance (GP7000) powerplant, which powers the A380, for the A350 XWB-1000. A (GE) spokesperson said that "it is not being considered." The engine, a joint venture of (GE) and Pratt & Whitney (P&W), is currently offered only on the A380. The A350 XWB-1000 is to be powered by a (Trent 1000) at 95,000 lbs thrust. There had been brief discussions between (GE) and Airbus (EDS) on a possible 105,000-lbs (GEnx) derivative, but those talks lapsed. Meanwhile, the status of existing orders for the (GEnx)-powered A350 XWB-800/-900 remains up in the air, with (GE) stating that "we are still doing technical studies but are not close to a business agreement." Six customers for the original A350 - - Air Europa (10), US Airways (20), ALAFCO (12), GECAS (10), TAM (10) and Qatar Airways (60) - - ordered the (GEnx) and most analysts considered it a formality that new agreements will be concluded. But according to a spokesperson, "(GE) does not have a deal with Airbus (EDS) on any A350 model and previous contracts we had, are for an airplane that doesn't exist."
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) is close to ordering 60 A320 family jets or 737NGs to replace its 737-300s and 737-400s and expects to make a selection by the end of April, according to Senior VP & CFO, Derek Kerr. Speaking at the airline's media day in Tempe, Kerr said deliveries would occur in the 2008 to 2010 timeframe and that both Boeing (TBC) and Airbus (EDS) have delivery positions available. (AMW)/(USA) also is negotiating an order for widebodies to replace its 10 767s and nine A330s - - the latter will be coming off lease. It ordered 20 A350s, but no longer is obliged to maintain the order given the extensive changes to the airplane and delivery schedule since Airbus (EDS) introduced the A350 XWB platform. Kerr said the airline is looking at both the A350 XWB and the 787.
2 757-2B7s (27124, N928UW; 27148, N931UW), reurned to lessor. EMB-190 (00072, N946UW), delivery.
April 2007: US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) escaped a first quarter that featured two significant storms disrupting operations in the Northeast and a complicated reservations system integration with a +$66 million net profit, a slight +1.8% improvement over earnings of +$65 million in the year-ago quarter. Along with the good financial news, (AMW)/(USA) unveiled a series of "customer service initiatives" including increased airport staffing, enhanced passenger reaccommodation capabilities and other improvements. Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker called the result "noteworthy" and said that while the airline projects full-year fuel expense to be +$300 million more than budgeted, it still expects to report second-quarter and full-year profits. First-quarter revenue rose +3.8% to $2.73 billion against a +4.4% increase in costs to $2.62 million. Operating income fell -7.4% to $116 million as a result. The bottom line was boosted by a lift in interest income. The mainline flew 14.42 billion (RPM)s traffic during the quarter, up +3.3%, while capacity grew just +1.8% to 18.56 billion (ASM)s. Load factor increased +1.1 points to 77.7% LF. Yield was ahead +1.9% to 13.22 cents, helping to lift unit revenue +3.4% to 10.27 cents. Operating (CASM) rose +3.7% to 10.76 cents, or +2% to 7.88 cents excluding special items, fuel and results from hedging. Despite the profitable result, Parker was contrite about (AMW)/(USA)'s first-quarter difficulties, saying, "The people of US Airways (AMW)/(USA) are dedicated to meeting our customers' needs. We did not do that in the first quarter of 2007 and are taking the necessary steps to improve our performance." He said the res system issues largely were to blame, but that the incident served to "highlight some other areas of service improvement opportunity."
The carrier already has started hiring more than >1,000 new airport staffers who will help "create new customer service centers in the airline's Eastern region." Passenger Operations Control centers similar to the one in Phoenix, will be added at Philadelphia, Charlotte, Boston and Washington National, to assist in rebooking or assisting passengers who may miss connecting flights. (AMW)/(USA) also is bringing in 600 new self-service kiosks starting next month, will waive the standby fee for loyalty program members and is working on improving seating and food service onboard transcontinental and transatlantic flights.
(AMW)/(USA) has 1,539 pilots (FC) on furlough. Plans to recall +50 pilots this month, +39 in May, and +44 in June.
Airbus (EDS) said US Airways (USA) has joined America West Airlines (AMW) in using the Airman real-time maintenance tool to monitor its fleet of Airbus (EDS) airplanes. (AMW)/(USA) becomes the largest Airman user.
Hawaiian Airlines (HWI) led all USA carriers with a 93.8% ontime percentage in March, according to data compiled by FlightStats. Among continental carriers, Southwest Airlines (84.4%) was the most punctual of the 39 measured. The worst ontime rates belonged to US Airways (AMW)/(USA) (56.6%). Sun Country Airlines (SCA) was the only carrier not to cancel a single flight.
EMB-190 (00078, N947UW), delivery.
May 2007: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) said consolidated passenger (RASM) fell in April. President, Scott Kirby said the revenue environment "has weakened from the rapid growth rate seen in 2006." The timing of Easter also was an issue. (AMW)/(USA) flew 5.45 billion consolidated (RPM)s passenger traffic in April, down -0.1% from the year-ago month. Capacity dipped -0.2% to 6.63 billion (ASM)s and load factor rose +0.1 point to 82.2% LF.
(PAR) Capital Management, which played a key role in US Airways (AMW)/(USA)'s emergence from bankruptcy and had been its largest shareholder, when it sold 6.5 million shares to Goldman, Sachs & Co in February, sold off nearly all its remaining shares to UBS Securities. The 6.75-million-share transaction leaves (PAR) with just a 0.29% stake in (AME)/(USA), according to a filing with the USA Securities and Exchange Commission. (PAR) VP, Edward Shapiro, who will retain his seat on the (AMW)/(USA) board, told Reuters that the firm still has "tremendous confidence" in the carrier's leadership. The news service said the 6.75 million shares were worth about $250 million.
Starts Philadelphia - Athens, using 767-200s, and stops on October 6th.
June 2007: US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) flew 5.57 billion (RPM)s passenger traffic in May, up +0.1% from the year-ago month on a -1.6% fall in domestic and a +15.4% increase in transatlantic traffic. Consolidated capacity dropped -1.8% to 6.83 billion (ASM)s and load factor was up +1.6 points to 81.5% LF.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) launched daily Philadelphia - Brussels service aboard 757s in two-class configuration. During the winter schedule, the service will be reduced to four weekly flights aboard 767s. US Airways (AMW)/(USA) launched daily Philadelphia - Zurich service. It is the carrier's 19th European destination.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) said the 600 new self-service kiosks it promised to install in the wake of first-quarter operational difficulties will come from Kinetics and will be deployed at the 107 airports (AMW)/(USA) serves domestically and in the Caribbean. The agreement with Kinetics includes a three-year maintenance provision. The replacement kiosks will be installed from mid-June through September.
B/E Aerospace said that it has been selected to provide main cabin retrofit and new-buy seating programs for some 250 airplanes by US Airways (AMW)/(USA), Frontier Airlines (FRO), and AirAsia (ASW), in contracts collectively valued at more than >$70 million. The (AMW)/(USA) deal includes retrofitting A320s and equipping new-buy single-aisle airplanes with economy (Y) and first class (F) seating. The contract with Frontier (FRO) covers retrofitting A318s and A319s as well as equipping A320s with economy seating (Y). The AirAsia (ASW) award is a follow-on order for economy seating (Y) for new-buy A320s.
At this month's Paris Air Show, US Airways (AMW)/(USA) signed for $10 billion worth of A320s, A330s and A350 XWBs, including finalization of an order for 22 A350s (boosted from 20 originally). It took 10 A330-200s, that will fill the gap until the arrival of the A350 XWBs and 60 A320 family airplanes, a mix of A319s, A320s and A321s. The deal includes "a number" of purchase rights. (AMW)/(USA) currently holds orders for 37 A320 family airplanes for delivery in 2009 - 2010 and will retire its 737-300s/400s as they are delivered. Rolls Royce (RR) valued the (Trent XWB) order at more than >$1.8 billion at list prices.
EMB-190 (00081, N948UW), delivery.
July 2007: US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) said passenger (RASM) "has gotten progressively better during the second quarter" and June figures were "up slightly" over the year-ago month. "We see an encouraging revenue environment moving into the third quarter due, in part, to stronger year-over-year bookings and improving yield trends," President Scott Kirby said. The group flew 5.89 billion consolidated (RPM)s passenger traffic in June, up +0.4% from the year-ago month. Capacity fell -1.4% to 6.91 billion (ASM)s, and load factor rose +1.6 points to 85.3% LF, the highest for any month in the company's history.
US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) reported second-quarter net income of +$263 million, down -13.6% from net earnings of +$305 million in the year-ago period. Despite the profit drop, Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker said he was "very pleased" that the carrier posted its sixth consecutive quarter in the black. He attributed the earnings decrease to "expenses associated with our operational improvement plan." At the end of the first quarter, (AMW)/(USA) unveiled a series of "customer service initiatives" including increased airport staffing, enhanced passenger reaccommodation capabilities and other improvements.
Second-quarter revenue fell -0.5% to $3.16 billion, while expenses increased +1.3% to $2.87 billion, producing operating income of +$289 million, a -15.3% fall from +$342 million in the year-ago quarter.
Mainline traffic grew +0.9% to 16.29 billion (RPM)s on a -0.6% dip in capacity to 19.52 billion (ASM)s, producing a load factor of 83.5% LF, up +1.2 points. Yield declined -0.5% to 13.47 cents as (PRASM) lifted +1% to 11.24 cents and (CASM) rose +2.6% to 11.34 cents. (CASM) excluding special items, fuel and gain/loss from fuel hedging was 8 cents, up +5.1%. "Although high fuel prices will continue to have a material financial impact on our company, we are encouraged by the strengthening revenue environment and industry capacity outlook," Parker said. "Looking forward, we maintain our projections of profitability for the third quarter and full-year 2007."
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) said in a filing with the USA Securities and Exchange Commission that Fidelity Investments reduced its stake in the carrier to 8.649%. It remains the largest shareholder in (AMW)/(USA), according to the Charlotte Business Journal, which reported that the mutual fund firm sold 32% of its holding and previously owned approximately 12.8% of the airline.
Separately, (AMW)/(USA) said it has partnered with Usablenet mobile to provide increased content and functionality, including ticket purchasing, from the carrier's website to customers using Personal Digital Assistant (PDA)s or Web-equipped mobile phones.
(AMW)/(USA) also announced that it completed its (IATA) (ITA) Operational Safety Audit (IOSA) certification.
Continental Airlines (CAL), Delta Air Lines (DAL), Northwest Airlines (NWA) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) launched formal bids to operate new services to China, that will become available as the result of the expanded aviation agreement with the USA recently signed. The USA Dept of Transportation (DOT) will award six new routes between 2007 and 2009, and each of the aforementioned carriers just filed official applications. (CAL) applied to operate a daily Newark - Shanghai service aboard a 285-seat 777 starting in the spring of 2009. The flight would originate in Cleveland. (CAL) currently flies to Beijing from Newark and said the new service would "serve the large Asian and Chinese-American population residing in the New York City/Newark area, and the largest population base in the USA in which passengers have been forced to use connecting flights or less-than-daily foreign carrier service . . . between the USA financial capital and the rapidly expanding Chinese financial capital."
Delta (DAL), which in January applied to serve Shanghai from Atlanta next year, expanded its application to include a daily flight to Beijing as well. "Both routes would fill a critical gap in air service for the 65 million residents of the USA Southeast, who currently lack nonstop air service to China," (DAL) said, adding that it is the largest USA international carrier without nonstop service to China. It plans to operate dual-class 777s, including lie-flat seats in business (C), on the routes.
(NWA) intends to serve both Beijing and Shanghai from Detroit (DTW), and said it is "ready to start flying right away." It will use 747-400s if selected to operate to Shanghai this year ((DOT) has said it may award an expedited service in 2007). If selected for the 2009 award, it would use 787s to both Shanghai and Beijing. President & CEO, Doug Steenland said (DTW) offers an "unmatched combination of broad network coverage of the entire eastern half of the USA, convenient direct routings and a new, state-of-the-art terminal facility." (NWA) currently offers connecting service to Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou from Tokyo Narita.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) previously applied to operate a Philadelphia (PHL) - Shanghai service in 2008, and now expanded its application to include daily (PHL) - Beijing service on a 269-seat A340, originating in Charlotte starting in March 2009.
Later, the four USA legacy carriers: Continental Airlines (CAL), Delta Air Lines (DAL), Northwest Airlines (NWA) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA), that announced earlier their intention to compete for the right to operate new routes to China were joined by American Airlines (AAL), United Airlines (UAL) and a surprise entrant - - all-business-class (C) carrier, MAXjet Airways (MXJ).
(AAL) proposed to add a daily Chicago O'Hare (ORD) - Beijing flight to its daily (ORD) - Shanghai service beginning March 25, 2009. It proposed to operate the Beijing service on 245-seat, three-class 777-200ERs and said passengers would benefit from a codeshare arrangement with China Eastern Airlines (CEA).
(UAL), which won the USA Dept of Transportation's 2007 competition, and launched daily Washington Dulles - Beijing service in March, said it will file an application to operate daily San Francisco - Guangzhou flights in 2008 - - the first nonstop service from the USA to that Chinese city - - aboard a 253-seat 777, and a daily Los Angeles - Shanghai service, the following year aboard a 347-seat 747. (UAL) said Los Angeles (LAX) is the largest USA city without nonstop Chinese service by a USA carrier. "Our East meets West proposal is simple. Add capacity to those urban areas with the least service and most pressing demand," Senior VP, Michael Whitaker said.
MAXjet (MXJ) applied to operate Seattle - Shanghai flights aboard a 92-seat 767-200ER beginning March 25, 2009. Service would originate and terminate at (LAX) and would be the airline's first transpacific route. It currently flies to New York (JFK), Washington Dulles (IAD) and Las Vegas from London Stansted, and plans to start serving (LAX) on August 30. MAXjet (MXJ) said the flight would "link two vital commercial centers with the only nonstop service from the Pacific Northwest to China" and the only "same-plane direct service on a USA flag airline from Los Angeles to Shanghai."
The USA General Services Administration awarded one-year contracts worth a combined $2.02 billion to 14 domestic carriers effective October 1. Contracts cover federal travelers on official business and went to United Airlines (UAL) ($661.1 million), American Airlines (AAL) ($389.7 million), Delta Air Lines (DAL) ($370.5 million), US Airways (AMW)/(USA) ($314.7 million), Alaska Airlines (ASA) ($54.5 million), Northwest Airlines (NWA) ($35.8 million), AirTran Airways (CQT) ($36.5 million), Frontier Airlines (FRO) ($17.4 million), ExpressJet Airlines (Continental Airlines (CAL) subsidiary) ($8.8 million), Midwest Airlines (MWX) ($4.1 million), JetBlue Airways (JBL) ($2.9 million), Mesa Air Group ($2.5 million), ATA Airlines (AAT) ($756,486), and North American Airlines (NNA) ($223,205).
The Carlyle Group, a private equity firm, reached a definitive agreement to acquire (ARINC) from its current shareholders, which include more than a dozen major airlines and Boeing (TBC). (ARINC), which generates more than >$900 million in annual revenue, specializes in transportation communications technology, and its Air Traffic Control (ATC) support systems are used by carriers and airports throughout the world. Primary shareholders in the 77-year-old company based in Annapolis, include American Airlines (AAL), United Airlines (UAL), Delta Air Lines (DAL), Continental Airlines (CAL), Northwest Airlines (NWA), US Airways (AMW)/(USA), Air Canada (ACN), Air France (AFA)/(KLM), Lufthansa (DLH), British Airways (BAB), Mexicana (CMA), Swiss International Air Lines (CSR), TACA (TAC), FedEx (FED), Hawaiian Airlines (HWI), and Philippine Airlines (PAL). (AAL) said it would receive $194 million from the sale of its stake and (UAL) expects $125 million. Other carriers did not immediately disclose expected proceeds and (ARINC) did not release financial details. The company said the transaction is expected to close in the third quarter subject to regulatory approval. "This is an important step in the evolution of (ARINC)," Chairman & CEO, John Belcher said. "We have worked very hard to find a partner, who shares our vision and believe that Carlyle's international presence, financial resources, and expertise in the aerospace, defense and communications sectors will be instrumental in the continued expansion of our business." Carlyle Managing Director & Head Global Aerospace & Defense, Peter Clare said, "We believe that (ARINC) is well positioned to capitalize on several favorable macro trends in both its commercial and government market segments." (ARINC) earned net income of +$10.2 million in 2006, a +14.3% decrease from +$11.9 million in 2005. Its annual revenue has risen steadily this decade, increasing +72.7% from $532 million in 2000 to $919 million last year.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) said in a filing with the USA Securities and Exchange Commission, that it expects second-quarter nonfuel (CASM) to be higher than previously forecast, primarily due to maintenance costs related to returning eight leased airplanes throughout the year, the timing of engine Maintenance Repair & Overhaul (MRO) expenses and "additional spending to improve our operation." (CASM) is expected to rise in the third and fourth quarters as well due to an approximate -2% mainline and regional capacity reduction implemented through decreased utilization and "as a result of industry conditions." (AMW)/(USA) forecasts a +5% year-over-year rise in mainline second-quarter (CASM) excluding fuel, special items and transition expenses and a +2% to +4% increase for the full year. The second-quarter US Airways (AMW)/(USA) Express figure is expected to be up +7% year-over-year and +4% to +6% for the full year.
The group also unveiled its fleet plan for the year. It will end the quarter with 358 mainline airplanes and the full year with 356, taking into account the scheduled addition of six EMB-190s and the departure of eight 737-300s. The nine airlines constituting US Airways (AMW)/(USA) Express will end the quarter with 282 airplanes and the year with 287 as five EMB-170s, two CRJ-200s and two ERJ-145s leave the fleet and 14 EMB-175s are added.
August 2007: US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) flew 6.15 billion consolidated (RPM)s passenger traffic in July, up +1.2% on the year-ago month. Capacity fell -1.4% to 7.17 billion (ASM)s, lifting load factor +2.2 points to 85.8% LF. The company said July passenger (RASM) rose +4% year-over-year.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) and the International Assn of Machinists (IAM) are scheduled to begin National Mediation Board (NMB)-facilitated talks in Washington regarding the final transition agreements covering more than >10,000 fleet service employees and mechanics (MT).
Later, US Airways (AMW)/(USA) announced a tentative agreement with the International Assn of Machinists and Aerospace Workers covering the carrier's 7,700 fleet service employees (MT). Negotiations had been ongoing for more than a year and recently included National Mediation Board facilitators. Agreement becomes effective 30 days after ratification, which is expected to take about a month, and extends through 2011.
Product Support Solutions and Holly-Connects announced "successful deployment of US Airways (AMW)/(USA)'s next-generation platform for voice self service" following a two-month development. The system will handle more than 12 million calls per year. (AMW)/(USA) said it transitioned three legacy voice platforms and 11 applications to the Holly platform.
737-301 (23237), WFU at Charlotte.
September 2007: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) Group airlines flew 5.94 billion (RPM)s passenger traffic in August, up +3.7% from the year-ago month, against a -2.4% decline in capacity to 7.03 billion (ASM)s. Load factor improved +5 points to 84.5% LF.
Fidelity Investment parent FMR Corp increased its stake in US Airways (AMW)/(USA) to 13.8 million shares, or 15%, from the previous 8.6%, the airline said in a filing with the USA Securities and Exchange Commission.
The USA Dept of Transportation (DOT) awarded coveted new China route authorities to all six USA legacy carriers. Two of the route awards, going to Delta Air Lines (DAL) and United Airlines (UAL) for service that can begin on March 30, are "final decisions," (DOT) said. Four additional routes, on which service can begin in 2009, are "proposed" designations, that likely will become final "in the near future." (DAL) won authority to operate direct flights between Atlanta and Shanghai beginning next year; no airline currently flies the route. (UAL) was cleared to start San Francisco - Guangzhou service in 2008. The proposed routes, to be launched in 2009, if final approval is given, went to American Airlines (AAL) (Chicago - Beijing), Continental Airlines (CAL) (Newark - Shanghai), Northwest Airlines (NWA) (Detroit - Shanghai), and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) (Philadelphia - Beijing). All six awards are for daily service. "By bringing China and the USA one step closer, we increase our ability to compete, boost our success in the global marketplace, and make international travel for all passengers easier and more affordable," Transportation Secretary, Mary Peters said. The new routes are possible owing to an expanded aviation agreement signed by the two nations in July, that doubles the number of daily flights allowed between the USA and China over the next five years. (AMW)/(USA) said daily service to Beijing will be launched with 269-seat A340s, and it will use Charlotte - Philadelphia flights to feed the service.
The (FAA) granted Phoenix-based, US Airways (AMW)/(USA) a single air operating certificate (AOC), officially cementing as one entity, the carrier created in September 2005 when America West Airlines (AMW) acquired the assets of the former US Airways (USA), which was enduring its second bankruptcy in three years. "This is a very important milestone, reflecting two years of hard work, combining and refining two sets of policies, procedures, manuals, checklists and computer systems for virtually every area of the airline," US Airways (AMW)/(USA) Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker said. "Achieving an integration of this magnitude in just 24 months, is unheard of in the airline industry and a fantastic result." Work toward a single certificate began shortly after the September 27, 2005, merger and was completed after the integration of the two airlines' flight operations systems. The two workforces still are not completely integrated, however. "Though transparent to US Airways (AMW)/(USA)'s customers, achieving the single certificate allows the airline to operate as one US Airways (AMW)/(USA) with one set of policies, procedures, computer systems, maintenance and flight control systems," (AMW)/(USA) said in a statement. "The next step in the airline's integration is to achieve single contracts with pilots (FC), flight attendants (CA), and ground and maintenance (MT) employees, who will continue to work under terms of transition agreements reached after the merger."
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) named former Northwest Airlines (NWA) executive, Robert Isom to the newly created position of Executive VP & COO, effective immediately. Isom, 43, will be in charge of Flight Operations, Inflight Services, Maintenance & Engineering, Airport Customer Service, Reservations, Cargo and the carrier's Express Operation, and will report directly to President, Scott Kirby. Isom comes to (AMW)/(USA) from (GMAC), where he last served as Chief Restructuring Officer. Prior to that, he was Senior VP Ground Operations & Airport Customer Service for (NWA) and previously was based in Tokyo as (NWA) VP International. He also held positions with America West Airlines (AMW), predecessor to the current (AMW)/(USA), in the 1990s.
(AMW)/(USA) additionally named Daniel Pon, VP Human Resources, and Kerry Hester, VP Customer Service Planning. Senior VP Customer Service Anthony Mule, will retire.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) has 1,330 pilots (FC) on furlough. Has unveiled plans to hire more than >350 new pilots (FC) and move +140 more, who were furloughed to US Airways Express positions, back to the mainline. Training for the new hires will begin in November, with positions continuing to be filled for the next 12 to 16 months. Those pilots (FC) will fill EMB-190 seats, which in turn will push current pilots (FC) to larger airplanes. (AMW)/(USA) said the hirings were necessitated "primarily by retiring mainline pilots (FC)."
3 EMB-190s (00102, N949UW; 0106, N950UW; 0112, N951UW), deliveries.
October 2007: US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) airlines flew 4.86 billion (RPM)s passenger trafficin September, up +2% from the year-ago month. Capacity fell -5% to 6.26 billion (ASM)s and load factor was up +5.4 points to 77.6% LF.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) reported net income of +$177 million, a turnaround from a net loss of -$78 million in the year-ago quarter, and said "capacity constraint" will allow for continued profitability despite rising fuel prices. Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker said it marked a "momentous change in the industry" for USA carriers to earn profits despite per-barrel crude oil prices rising above $80. "This is a big deal," he told analysts and reporters. "We are happy to see our industry acting rationally" by taking a conservative approach regarding capacity growth. Parker reiterated his belief that the industry should be moving to consolidate. Referring to (AMW)/(USA)'s failed attempt at acquiring Delta Air Lines (DAL) earlier this year, he said, "Everyone's 2008 numbers would look a hell of a lot better had that transaction happened." He added that consolidation would be "fantastic" and "really positive" even if (AMW)/(USA) were not involved, because it would take excess capacity out of the market.
He noted that (AMW)/(USA) is now operating under one operating certificate and that America West (AMW)/former (USA) reservation system integration problems are "behind us." He said ontime performance in September marked "the second-best month since our merger in 2005 . . . We are on track to regain our position as an industry leader in operational reliability." The carrier's primary area of concern is "problematic" fuel costs, but Parker said limited-to-negative capacity growth will mitigate the impact. CFO, Derek Kerr said (AMW)/(USA) expects to pay $2.28 to $2.33 per gallon for jet fuel in the fourth quarter, and $2.40 to $2.45 for full-year 2008.
Third-quarter revenue lifted +2.3% to $3.04 billion, while expenses fell -4% to $2.83 billion, producing operating income of +$202 million, a more than >12-time improvement over +$16 million in the year-ago quarter. Mainline traffic increased +2.8% to 16.4 billion (RPM)s on a -2.4% cut in capacity to 19.67 billion (ASM)s, producing a load factor of 83.4% LF, up +4.3 points. Yield rose +1.2% to 13.01 cents as (PRASM) grew +6.5% to 10.85 cents, and (CASM) lowered -2.6% to 11.11 cents. (CASM), ex-fuel, was up +5.7% to 7.68 cents.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) told the USA Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) that it expects (CASM) to rise in the second half of 2007, including by an estimated +4% in the fourth quarter. (AMW)/(USA) said mainline (CASM), excluding fuel and special items, will increase +1.5% from the midpoint of its previously announced third-quarter guidance due to near-term semifixed costs, that did not decline at the same rate as previous capacity reductions and higher profit-sharing expenses. It now expects (CASM) to rise +5% to +6% year-over-year. Fourth-quarter (CASM), calculated on a similar basis, will surge +4% from previous guidance, and +5% to +7%, year-over-year, due to an additional -4% reduction in planned capacity, and the same profit-sharing obligations. Full-year unit cost, excluding fuel and special items, will grow an estimated +4% to +6%.
The Star Alliance (SAL) said US Airways (AMW)/(USA) has relocated to the new South Terminal at Miami International (MIA), beginning the process that will see all five Star member carriers at (MIA) operating from the same terminal. The Star (SAL) area is located in the new Concourse "J" and has 50 shared ticketing and check-in counters.
(AMW)/(USA) said it will reduce mainline Pittsburgh (PIT) service to 22 daily flights from 31 from January 6 and expects service provided by regional partners to drop to 46 daily flights from 77, as it "continues to maximize the financial stability of its Pittsburgh operation." Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker said the (PIT) operation cost the company more than >$40 million over the past year. (AMW)/(USA) will close its pilot (FC) and flight attendant (CA) bases, but will not furlough those employees, leaving approximately 500 to bid for trips originating from alternate (AMW)/(USA) bases. Around 100 mainline ground workers will be offered jobs elsewhere in the company, while some 350 employees of wholly owned subsidiary PSA Airlines, will be offered new jobs or furloughed, (AMW)/(USA) said. The airline will reduce its lease of 29 gates, following negotiations with the airport and said it plans to maintain its frequent-flier club, operations control center and a heavy Maintenance Repair & Overhaul (MRO) base, that employs 730 mechanics (MT) at (PIT). Mainline service will be canceled from (PIT) to Boston, Denver and Chicago O'Hare.
Megadata Corp said US Airways (AMW)/(USA) will use PASSUR FlightPerform live airspace analysis tools at (AMW)/(USA)'s Pittsburgh operations control center "for improved airspace utilization, fuel management and diversion management."
PayPal now is available for customers purchasing tickets on US Airways (AMW)/(USA)'s website, the carrier announced.
Lufthansa Technik (LTK) Tulsa signed a five-year agreement with US Airways (AMW)/(USA) to provide technical support for thrust reversers on the airline's narrowbody Airbus (EDS) airplanes.
(AMW)/(USA) confirmed its June order for 92 Airbus (EDS) airplanes, signing three definitive purchase agreements with the manufacturer, including one for 22 A350 XWBs. The carrier signed off on its Paris Air Show order for the A350s, which will begin delivery in 2014, making it the type's North American launch customer. It will take both A350 XWB-800s and A350 XWB-900s, which it said "allows for modest international expansion or replacement of existing older technology airplanes should market conditions warrant." It said the deal includes purchase rights, which will allow it eventually to replace all its widebodies and fly "a single intercontinental fleet type of A350 XWBs." (AMW)/(USA) also confirmed an order for 10 A330-200s, that will start delivering in 2009 and may be converted into A330-300s or A340s. They will replace 767s in the short term. The massive order was topped off by a contract for 10 A319s, 40 A320s and 10 A321s, with conversion rights, that will be delivered from next year through 2012, along with 37 planes from a previous purchase agreement. The narrowbody fleet size will remain static as 737-300s/-400s are eliminated.
737-3B7 (23860, N525AU), returned to lessor and parted out. EMB-190-100 IGW (0119, N952UW), delivery.
November 2007: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) flew 5.06 billion consolidated (RPM)s passenger traffic in October, down -1.8% from the year-ago month. Capacity fell -5.8% to 6.33 billion (ASM)s, and load factor rose +3.3 points to 80% LF.
1st 6 months = 18.33 billion (RPK)s (+11.84%) traffic; +.98% (ASK)s capacity; 79.7% LF (+1); 177.79 million (FTK)s (+4.57%) freight traffic; 18.78 million passengers (+1.35%).
US Airways(AMW)/(USA) issued additional Flight Crew (FC) recall letters in October, and announced plans to hire more than >350 new pilots with training dates beginning this month. The carrier will also move 140 pilots (FC), who currently fly for US Airways Express carriers, back to the mainline (AMW)/(USA) flying seats they were furloughed from several years ago. Applicants can apply online.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) announced an expansion to its massive Airbus (EDS) order, reaching an agreement with the manufacturer for five additional A330-200s and signing a Letter of Intent (LOI) with (ILFC) (ILF) for two more. (AMW)/(USA) included 10 of the type in the 92-airplane commitment sealed last month. It will take delivery of the leased airplanes in 2009, and the ordered airplanes in 2009 to 2011, which it said will allow it to add 3 to 4 new markets per year, during the period. "We intend to use the A330s to expand our existing gateways, as well as provide the potential to eventually add intercontinental service from our West Coast hubs," Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker said. The carrier's long-haul plans crystallized further, when it announced plans to launch a daily Philadelphia (PHL) - London Heathrow service on March 29, aboard a two-class, 288-seat A330. It will be the 20th European destination served by (AMW)/(USA) from (PHL). "We were fortunate to identify a unique opportunity to acquire landing and takeoff rights at Heathrow (LHR)," President, Scott Kirby said, adding that the airline is "extremely appreciative" of the efforts required to cement the transatlantic "open skies" agreement.
December 2007: US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) flew 4.75 billion (RPM)s passenger traffic in November, a -4.6% decrease from the year-ago month. Capacity fell at the same rate to 6.1 billion (ASM)s, and load factor slipped -0.1 point to 77.8% LF. (AMW)/(USA) said consolidated passenger (RASM) increased +2% to +4% year-over-year.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) hired 41 pilots (FC) in November, and expects to hire +19 in December. The carrier expects to hire through 2008. Applicants can apply online.
(CAE) won orders for full-flight simulators (FFS) and related (CAE) Simfinity training devices valued at more than >C$126 million/$124.1 million from Continental Airlines (CAL), US Airways (AMW)/(USA), Etihad Airways (EHD), Air Algerie (ALG), and Alteon Training. (AMW)/(USA) ordered two (CAE) 7000 Series A320 (FFS)s, one (CAE) 7000 Series A330/A340 (FFS), nine (CAE) Simfinity Integrated Procedures Trainers, and (CAE) Simfinity (VSIM)s for A320 and A330/A340 platforms. Deliveries are slated for next year.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) selected the (IAE) (V2500) to power the up-to-153 A320 family airplanes it has on order. The engine deal covers powerplants for 78 firm airplanes, valued at approximately $1.3 billion, (IAE) said. The airplanes will begin delivering in November 2008 and will feature the SelectOne version of the (V2500). (IAE)'s offering powers 94 of (AMW)/(USA)'s 196 current A320 family airplanes.
2 EMB-190s (0133, N953UW; 0139, N954UW), deliveries.
January 2008: US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) flew 4.86 billion consolidated (RPM)s passenger traffic in December, down -4.5% from the year-ago month. Capacity fell -4.4% to 6.46 billion (ASM)s and load factor was up +0.2 point to 75.3% LF. The carrier said consolidated passenger (RASM) increased +2% to +4% year-over-year.
2007 statistics: 98.57 billion (RPK)s passenger traffic +.9%; -1.5% capacity (ASK)s; +2 load factor for 80.8% LF. SEE ATTACHED COMPARISON CHART TO SELECTED OPERATORS - "AMW-2007-STATS."
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) posted 2007 net income of +$427 million, up +40.6% over $304 million earned in 2006, but endured a fourth-quarter loss of -$79 million, and warned that 2008 could be a difficult year owing to rising fuel costs and a weakening USA economy. Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker said that "if oil prices remain on the same curve," the airline's 2008 full-year fuel costs will increase +$800 million over 2007 and it will "continue to keep capacity in check" as a result. President, Scott Kirby added that "fundamental trends . . . remain robust," but acknowledged that could change. "We remain concerned that economic concerns will put revenue pressure on us," he explained. "That's less about what we see in our data than what we read every day" in the media about the slowing USA economy. Parker said fuel costs were "too much to overcome" in the fourth quarter, resulting in a loss that was disappointing, compared to a +$12 million profit in the year-ago quarter. Full-year 2007 revenue rose +1.2% to $11.7 billion, while expenses increased +1.5% to $11.17 billion, producing an operating loss of -$533 million, down -4.5% from -$558 million in the prior year. Mainline traffic grew +0.9% to 61.26 billion (RPM)s on a -1.5% drop in capacity to 75.84 billion (ASM)s, producing a load factor of 80.8% LF, up +2 points. Yield lifted +1.2% to 13.28 cents, as (PRASM) increased +3.7% to 10.73 cents and (CASM) escalated +3.1% to 11.3 cents. (CASM) excluding fuel, rose +4.7% to 7.91 cents. Parker said (AMW)/(USA) "completed major integration issues" in the second half of 2007 relating to the America West Airlines (AMW)/US Airways (USA) merger, adding he is confident that operational problems associated with systems integration are "behind us."
Responding to questions from analysts and reporters regarding speculation about Delta Air Lines (DAL)'s reported merger negotiations with Northwest Airlines (NWA) and United Airlines (UAL), Parker reiterated his belief that the USA industry "is too fragmented" and that "consolidation is going to happen." (AMW)/(USA) unsuccessfully attempted to merge with (DAL) last year. "I don't think Delta (DAL) has any choice at this time [but to explore a merger] and they'll probably follow through," he said. "Something's going to happen here in my view, and once that happens, all of the big six [USA majors are] going to participate." He added that the case for consolidation "is so compelling" that USA regulators are likely to allow it to go forward.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) received final approval from the USA Dept of Transportation (DOT) to launch its first service (Philadelphia - Beijing) to China in 2009. The (DOT) granted additional rights to American Airlines (AAL) (Chicago O'Hare - Beijing), Continental Airlines (Newark - Shanghai), and Northwest Airlines (NWA) (Detroit - Shanghai), as well. The agency issued a tentative decision in September. All 2009 flights must be launched by March 25 of that year, the (DOT) said.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) announced the recall of "more than" >200 flight attendants (CA), effective February 15. Notices were sent in late December to furloughed (AMW)/(USA) cabin staff (CA). Recalled employees will be assigned to Charlotte, Philadelphia, Washington National, New York LaGuardia, or Boston.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) named VP Financial Analysis, Dion Flannery as President of US Airways Express. He succeeds the retiring Robert Martens.
February 2008: US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) said consolidated January (PRASM) increased +3% to +5% year-over-year. It flew 4.8 billion (RPM)s passenger traffic last month, down -1.5% from the year-ago month. Capacity fell -3.1% to 6.44 billion (ASM)s, and load factor rose +1.2 points to 74.5% LF.
The USA Dept of Transportation released its final Air Travel Consumer Report for 2007 and said that, according to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics, the 20 USA carriers recording ontime performance reported a 73.4% ontime arrival rate, down -2 points from 2006. In addition, mishandled baggage reports increased +4.5% to 7.03 per 1,000 passengers, while consumer complaints soared +58.2%. In December, airlines reported a 64.3% ontime arrival rate, down from 70.8% in the year-ago month. Cancellations of scheduled domestic departures rose to 3.5% from 3% in December 2006.
Aloha Airlines (ALO) and Hawaiian Airlines (HWI) led the way in punctuality, followed by US Airways (AMW)/(USA) at 74.5%. American Eagle Airlines' 53.6% was the worst ontime rate and its 8.3% cancellation rate also was tops. Frontier Airlines (FRO), based in wintry Denver, managed to operate the highest proportion of its scheduled flights at 99%.
US Airways (USA) named Northwest Airlines (NWA) VP Inflight Services, Suzanne Boda as Senior VP East Coast, International & Cargo Operations, and American Airlines (AAL) New York LaGuardia, Managing Director, Robert Ciminelli as VP Philadelphia Operation.
Thales (THL) will provide US Airways (AMW)/(USA) and Swiss International Air Lines (CSR) with its Topflight FMS for Airbus (EDS) airplanes. Features include undo functions, multi-revision temporary flight plan capabilities, and a versatile display system.
Consolidation speculation is rampant in the world's biggest air transport market, but the widespread talk about possible USA airline tie-ups generally breezes past or altogether ignores the multitude of obstacles faced by carriers attempting to form complicated combinations. In June 2007, US Airways (AMW)/(USA)'s failed $10.2 billion hostile takeover bid for Delta Air Lines (DAL) highlighted the myriad issues associated with attempted airline mergers - - and that proposal didn't even reach the point where the USA Dept of Justice (DOJ) was forced to render a judgment. The current speculation centers on (DAL)'s reported talks with Northwest Airlines (NWA) and, if such a tie-up were to be formed, a subsequent follow-up deal between Continental Airlines (CAL) and United Airlines (UAL). "That scenario seems less likely than popular perception," (AMW)/(USA) Chairman & CEO , Doug Parker recently argued. "Delta (DAL) and Northwest (NWA) getting together makes lots of sense [based on their route networks], but taking Continental (CAL) out of the [SkyTeam] Alliance (STM) doesn't make sense . . . There's more behind all these transactions than just looking at two route maps. It's a lot more complicated than that." (DAL), (NWA), and (CAL) are all SkyTeam (STM) members, and a merged (DAL)-(NWA) obviously would be a SkyTeam carrier (STM). But presumably, (UAL) is not leaving the Star Alliance (SAL), of which it is a founding member, and therefore (CAL)'s Newark and Houston hubs would become part of Star (SAL) under the (DAL)-(NWA)/(CAL)-(UAL) consolidation scenario. "Why would you go through all the trouble [of a merger] to lose [Newark and Houston] from the alliance?" asks Parker, wondering aloud whether non-USA SkyTeam (STM) members would be ready to embrace a merger that could cost them (CAL)'s network.
(NWA) currently holds a "golden share" in (CAL), that allows it to block the latter from entering into a merger. But once (NWA) enters into a merger agreement, (CAL) has the right to buy back the golden share for a mere $100 and would be free to pursue its own merger deal (even if (NWA)'s merger ultimately was rejected). "If the golden share would become redeemable, that would change our circumstances," (CAL) Chairman & CEO, Larry Kellner said. While (CAL) is content with "our position relative to the industry today," Kellner said, it "won't hesitate to act" if the industry landscape changes and rivals combine to form a mega-airline. "We do pay attention to [our] relative size," he said. "Size is important in a network business." In terms of traffic, (CAL) ranked fourth among USA airlines in 2007 at 84.31 billion (RPM)s, trailing American Airlines (AAL) (138.45 billion (RPMs), (DAL) (122.07 billion (RPM)s, including regional operations), and (UAL) (117.4 billion (RPM)s). However, it had the most balanced network in terms of international and domestic services and the best service reputation among network carriers.
USA airline executives continue to argue that the industry is too fragmented and that six legacy carriers will be unable to grow capacity and keep costs down absent consolidation. "I cannot see any logic in [that argument] whatsoever," Avitas Senior VP, Adam Pilarski, a longtime industry observer, said. "If you can't grow capacity with six, I don't see how going from six to three changes it in any way. Six becoming three doesn't create more Americans that want to fly."
And the problems associated with mergers would create operational difficulties, that could push passengers to Low Cost Carrier (LCC)s and new entrants, Pilarski contends: "I don't see any synergies that get translated into cost savings or revenue enhancement. Yes, a few consultants, a few banks, a few executives will make money off of mergers, but the negatives for the industry are obvious. You are trying to merge two different cultures, which never works well. You are talking about airlines that may belong to two different alliances, that have very different fleets, different operating systems . . . How do you integrate the pilot (FC) lists? There are a lot of headaches that could cost you a lot in productivity. I'm fairly confident that [mergers] will be problematic."
While (AAL) Executive VP Finance & Planning & CFO, Tom Horton believes that consolidation could "lead to greater efficiency," he acknowledges that "there are a lot of challenges to consolidation in our industry."
Of course, any merger agreement will face scrutiny from the (DOJ) and members of Congress, several of whom already have vowed to fight consolidation on the grounds that it will result in lost jobs and diminished service. While USA airline officials appear to believe that the (DOJ) is more likely to approve a merger than in 2001, when it blocked (UAL)'s proposed acquisition of then-USAir (USA), the fact that a new President (and a new attorney general) will take office next January may be driving the latest round of talks. "Since there is going to be a change in administration, there will be some delay" in clearing a merger unless an agreement is submitted by the end of this month, Parker says, predicting that any later submission likely would get caught up in the changeover. But he adds that such approval would still come: "It's more of a timing issue. Irrespective of the administration, the arguments for consolidation are so compelling that I'm not overly concerned that the next administration is going to be against mergers." Other factors affecting potential mergers are the ongoing decline of USA airline stock prices and the credit crunch. Airline shareholders are unlikely to be enticed by the prospect of "cashing out" underperforming stocks in a merger, though Parker insists that they would be interested in moving their shares "to a stronger airline." And the state of credit markets means a carrier will have more difficulty raising money to finance an "acquisition" of another carrier. "It doesn't change the likelihood of mergers, just the structure," Parker says. "The structure will move from debt financing to equity financing" and merger agreements will be "equity-equity transactions."
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) said that it will charge economy (Y) passengers $25 for a second checked bag on all flights within the USA and to/from Canada, Latin America, the Caribbean and Europe for travel from May 5 on tickets purchased after February 26. The carrier follows United Airlines (UAL), though (UAL)'s policy is only for North America. As with (UAL), the fee will be waived for loyalty program members. Also exempted will be active military personnel in uniform with identification (ID), unaccompanied minors, and those checking "assistive devices." Responding to consumer criticism of the move, President, Scott Kirby said, "Some critics may call this another example of airline customers being 'nickel and dimed' for services that used to be provided as part of the flying experience, but the airline industry of 2008 is very different from the industry of 1998 or 1988, and we have to be realistic and innovative about our product." Airlines throughout the world have been exploring ways to generate revenue from checked baggage and/or lower the cost burden of moving baggage.
EMB-190 (0152, N955UW), delivery.
March 2008: US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) said February consolidated passenger (RASM) rose +2% to +4% year-over-year. It flew 4.62 billion consolidated (RPM)s passenger traffic last month, a +2.4% increase over the year-ago month. Capacity rose +1.8% to 6.02 billion (ASM)s, lifting load factor +0.4 point to 76.7% LF.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) and the International Assn of Machinists (IAM) announced a tentative labor agreement that will move all (AMW)/(USA) Maintenance Repair & Overhaul (MRO) and related employees under one labor contract. Pre-merger America West Airlines (AMW) staff will move to the higher pay scales of pre-merger (USA) employees and the contract also "modifies the existing East [(AMW)/(USA)] agreement in ways that are mutually beneficial to (IAM) mechanic-and-related employees and the company," (AMW)/(USA) said. The contract covers approximately 800 West and 2,500 East employees and, if ratified by (IAM) membership, will become amendable on December 31, 2011.
The trend of airlines assessing fees for checked baggage is growing, highlighted by two USA legacy carriers recently deciding to limit economy (Y) passengers to one "free" checked bag, while charging $25 for a second checked bag on a large portion of flights beginning May 5. In March 2007 "Baggage Blues," Air Transport World (ATW) magazine detailed the rising costs borne by airlines related to transporting billions of suitcases, boxes, consumer goods and pieces of sporting equipment each year. Carriers' deteriorating baggage handling record also was chronicled; (IATA) (ITA) estimates that mishandled baggage costs the global industry $3 billion annually. A year later, the baggage handling situation has not improved, according to SITA, the Information Technology (IT) provider, that specializes in tracking airline baggage. It has estimated that 30 million bags are mishandled annually, a figure that is rising. "We have mishandled more bags compared to last year," VP Airport Services, Catherine Mayer says. "But I do believe there is more of a focus on the resolution of this problem than in the past." Driven in part by "the negative attention baggage is getting in the press," the industry appears to realize that changes are needed, she says.
SJ Consulting President, Satish Jindel, a leading advocate of airlines moving to an "a la carte" pricing structure, praises United Airlines (UAL) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) for their decisions to start charging economy (Y) passengers $25 for a second checked bag on many of their routes, but says they and other carriers need to go further. "They should have charged more - - $25 doesn't cover the cost of moving the bag," let alone enable airlines to earn a profit from the carriage, he says. "They're running a business. Everything they do, they should make money off it." He also argues that carriers need to take measures regarding carry-on luggage simultaneously in order for passengers' baggage habits to truly change and lower the overall cost burden. "They should limit economy (Y) passengers to one carry-on and business (C) to two, and charge for checked bags," he says. "That way passengers will bring only what they need and airlines will cover the cost of transporting these bags. People have found it acceptable to pay for meals. Passengers will adjust to this too. It will make the system more efficient for everyone [including passengers] and lower costs for airlines . . . The industry is moving in the right direction at a snail's pace when the [baggage handling] problem is deteriorating at a hare's pace."
IATA (ITA), noting that "baggage handling systems and related processes are working at maximum capacity," has launched a "Baggage Management Improvement Program" and this year aims to find a combination of six airlines and airports to participate. SITA has signed on to contribute to the program. The intention is "to focus on a few of the airports/airlines with major problems and bring in solution experts . . . to work on identifying and resolving the specific problems," Mayer explains. "This sort of industry collaboration and effort is what is required." (IATA) (ITA) and SITA are pushing for greater integration of baggage handling systems to "enable real-time tracking of bags from check-in to arrival." (RFID), which so far has enjoyed only limited deployment, is viewed as a technology that could help in this regard. (IATA) (ITA) estimates that "airlines could save -$733 million in baggage mishandling costs with an investment of $0.10 incremental on the cost of [RFID] baggage labels." It adds that the figure does not include "key soft benefits," such as gaining customer loyalty by giving passengers the ability to find out exactly where their bags are at any given time.
Installing computer-controlled modern handling systems in airports also may ease the burden. British Airways (BAB), which has gained an unenviable reputation for mishandling baggage owing to several system meltdowns at London Heathrow (LHR) in recent years, boasts that (LHR)'s new Terminal 5 has more than 10.5 miles of high-tech baggage conveyor belts, the largest such system in Europe. (BAB) claims the system will allow it to lower its high mishandled baggage rate, estimated at about 25 bags "lost" for every 1,000 passengers, to about 15. The system, which has undergone intensive testing for the last 18 months, is touted as being able to handle 12,000 bags per hour and features "trolleys" that can carry bags as fast as 23 mph. It includes a special network of conveyors designated solely for bags checked late and an area where those checked extremely early can be stored and organized so as not to slow the movement of more pressing bags. A key to improving the process and mitigating losses may lie in changing passengers' perceptions about baggage. (UAl), for example, is selling its decision to charge for checked bags as a way to "offer customers choice, flexibility and low fares." US Airways (AMW)/(USA) President, Scott Kirby says it's a matter of being "realistic" in the face of rising fuel costs and growing volumes of baggage. Florida-based, Spirit Airlines (SPR), which unbundles its fares to charge for each service a passenger receives, claims that charging for checked baggage is "well received by customers because we give them options . . . they have more control over their ticket price." It also brings discipline to passengers' packing habits and means fewer bags onboard, which translates into less weight and lower fuel burn, the airline says.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) pilots (FC) who formerly flew for America West Airlines (AMW) notified the carrier of their intention to commence separate contract negotiations, saying they were unable to reach a joint agreement with former US Airways (USA) [East] pilots (FC). John McIlvenna, Chairman of the union leadership group representing former (AMW) pilots (FC), claimed that 400 (USA) East pilots (FC) had been upgraded to captain positions since the merger, but that just 40 (AMW) West pilots (FC) were afforded the same opportunity. The (AMW) West pilots (FC) contract became amendable in December 2006, while the (USA) East contract becomes amendable in December 2009. "America West (AMW) pilots (FC) have lost all patience with this merger," McIlvenna said. "We had hoped that this process would prove fruitful for all pilots (FC) of the new US Airways (AMW)/(USA). However, we have come to the point where we are leaving millions of dollars on the table each month for management to pocket."
Rolls-Royce (RR) won a $2 billion deal from US Airways (AMW)/(USA) for (Trent 700)s to power up to 30 A330-200s, as well as a (Trent 700) order from EgyptAir (EGP). Along with an accompanying TotalCare services agreement, the (AMW)/(USA) contract includes powerplants for 15 firm and up to 15 additional airplanes. "This decision further establishes Rolls-Royce (RR) as a true engine partner with US Airways (AMW)/(USA)," (RR) Civil Aerospace President, Mark King said. Execution of definitive contract agreements is expected in the coming months and delivery is scheduled to begin next year. Last June, (AMW)/(USA) placed $1.8 billion in firm orders for 22 A350 XWBs powered by (Trent XWB)s, including a TotalCare agreement, and in December selected the (V2500) to power up to 153 A320s.
2 EMB-190 (0156, N956UW; 0161, N957UW), deliveries.
April 2008: US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) said consolidated March passenger (RASM) climbed +5% to +7% year-over-year, but President, Scott Kirby said high fuel prices will lead the company to reduce mainline capacity -3% to -4% in the second half of 2008. The group flew 5.58 billion consolidated (RPM)s passenger traffic last month, down -0.7% from the year-ago month, against a -2.9% fall in capacity to 6.65 billion (ASM)s. Load factor rose +1.9 points to 83.9% LF.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) reported a first-quarter net loss of -$236 million, reversed from a profit of +$66 million in the year-ago period, and said it increasingly will implement an "a la carte" pricing structure to counter rising fuel costs. Like several competitors, it already has announced it will charge economy (Y) passengers $25 for a second checked bag, and added that it will offer the opportunity to "pre-select and purchase . . . a premium aisle or window seat near the front of the coach cabin." A la carte initiatives will generate +$100 million in incremental revenue annually going forward, it said, adding that "as additional technology and infrastructure enhancements are completed, the company anticipates significantly expanding its a la carte services and revenue." Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker said a la carte pricing can be a "very powerful" revenue generator and is necessary given record fuel costs. "The industry needs to stop doing just enough to get through down cycles but has to fix itself more fundamentally," he explained. "We've got to get to the point where we don't charge less than it costs to transport people, which we do as an industry all the time." He said high fuel costs are a "wakeup call" that should drive "fundamental long-term change" in how the industry operates.
First-quarter revenue increased +3.9% to $2.84 billion, but expenses jumped +16% to $3.04 billion, including a +49.5% leap in fuel costs to $823 million, leading to an operating loss of -$196 million, reversed from an operating profit of +$116 million in the year-ago period. Mainline traffic rose just +0.5% to 14.49 billion (RPM)s on a -1.2% dip in capacity to 18.34 billion (ASM)s, producing a load factor of 79% LF, up +1.3 points. Yield increased +2% to 13.48 cents as (PRASM) lifted +3.7% to 10.65 cents, and (CASM) grew +16.7% to 12.56 cents. (CASM) ex-fuel, rose +8.8% to 8.57 cents.
President, Scott Kirby said demand continues to be "robust," but noted that it is not keeping pace with "stratospheric fuel prices," making "capacity discipline" critical. CFO, Derek Kerr said full-year capacity will be down -2%, including a -4% drop in the fourth quarter. Jet fuel prices are expected to average $3.00 to $3.05 for the full year, he added.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) and Swiss International Air Lines (CSR) launched a codeshare deal under which Swiss (CSR) is placing its code on (AMW)/(USA)'s Philadelphia - Zurich service, and (AMW)/(USA) is placing its code on (CSR) flights from Zurich to Geneva, Nice, Athens, Vienna, Dusseldorf, Hanover, Nuremberg, Stuttgart, Luxembourg, and Bucharest Otopeni.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) mechanics (MT) represented by the International Assn of Machinists ratified a three-year labor agreement that transfers all (AMW)/(USA) maintenance-and-related employees to one contract. It covers some 3,300 employees (comprising 2,500 former US Airways (USA) and 800 former America West Airlines (AMW) staff) and becomes amendable December 31, 2011.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker told employees in a recent letter that "All airlines are going to have to make dramatic changes to their existing business models in order to remain viable," and that while he would not comment on any "specific discussions or transaction" that may involve (AMW)/(USA), the carrier "can't ignore what's happening in the world around us." Parker has been a consistent proponent of consolidation in the industry and was unsuccessful in his attempt to acquire Delta Air Lines (DAL) last year. The "Wall Street Journal" reported that (AMW)/(USA) and United Airlines (UAL) have been discussing a combination for more than a month, without citing sources. (UAL) also has been linked to Continental Airlines (CAL).
Parker again touted the results of the merger between America West Airlines (AMW) and the former US Airways (USA), but pilots (FC) unhappy with the progress of related labor issues, responded by dumping their long-time representative. They voted to leave the Air Line Pilots Assn (ALPA) and form a new union called the US Airline Pilots Assn (USAPA), which will represent more than >5,000 pilots (FC) from both (AMW) and the former (USA). The pilots (FC) had been frustrated by (ALPA)'s inability to negotiate a merged seniority list and other provisions with management to unify the two groups.
(USAPA) Interim President, Stephen Bradford said, "(USAPA) is ready on day one to begin a new era for all US Airways (AMW)/(USA) pilots (FC), East and West . . . In addition to providing quality services to the US Airways (AMW)/(USA) pilots (FC), (USAPA) will approach management in a more businesslike fashion to address the deficiencies of the collective US Airways (AMW)/(USA) pilots (FC)'s contracts, both East and West."
(AMW)/(USA) unveiled a new revenue initiative called "Choice Seats" that will make select aisle and window seats in the first few rows of economy (Y) available for a fee. Effective May 7, passengers may select a "Choice Seat" during Internet check-in from 24 hours before departure. The fee starts at $5 and depends on segment length and airplane. Approximately 8% of (AMW)/(USA) and US Airways Express economy seats (Y) will be made available.
(AMW)/(USA) is establishing a "satellite headquarters" in Philadelphia in an attempt to avoid a repeat of the disruptions it experienced at its Philadelphia hub last year. The carrier says the new Philadelphia office will house staffers from corporate communications, Information Technology (IT), real estate, finance, government affairs, human resources, and safety departments.
ITA Software said its ReShop solution was selected by US Airways (AMW)/(USA) for ticket reprice and reissue capabilities.
2 EMB-190s (0164, N958UW; 0166, N959UW), deliveries.
May 2008: US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) flew 5.33 billion consolidated (RPM)s passenger traffic in April, a -2.4% decrease from the year-ago month. Capacity fell -2.8% to 6.45 billion (ASM)s, and load factor rose +0.4 point to 82.6% LF.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) will launch daily, Charlotte (CLT) - Tucson, Charlotte - Sacramento, and Philadelphia (PHL) - Sacramento flights on June 3. Seasonal flights to Portland, Oregon, from (CLT) (daily), and (PHL) (a second daily frequency) begin the same day.
United Airlines (UAL) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) plan to postpone by one year newly awarded services to China. (UAL) received permission from the USA Dept of Transportation (DOT) to launch its San Francisco - Guangzhou service in June 2009, and (AMW)/(USA) asked the (DOT) for permission to push back its Philadelphia - Beijing service to 2010. "We're optimistic that economic conditions will be on the upswing in 2010, giving us a better chance of success with our first route to China," (AMW)/(USA) President, Scott Kirby said in a letter to employees cited by the "Associated Press."
Opposition from some quarters to potential moves by USA airlines in response to the recent Delta Air Lines (DAL)/Northwest Airlines (NWA) merger announcement, is fierce, with Virgin Atlantic Airways (VAA) vowing to fight a British Airways (BAB)/American Airlines (AAL)/Continental Airlines (CAL) transatlantic alliance and United Airlines (UAL)'s pilots (FC) expressing strong disapproval of management's reported merger negotiations with US Airways (AMW)/(USA).
(CAL) said that it has ruled out a merger, but the current SkyTeam (STM) member is on the outside looking in at a (DAL)-(NWA)-Air France (AFA)-(KLM) transatlantic alliance and, according to (BAB), is exploring the possibility of leaving SkyTeam (STM) and joining with (BAB) and (AAL) in those carriers' long-proposed transatlantic partnership.
Virgin (VAA) Group, Chairman, Richard Branson said that he would "fight tooth and nail" against such an alliance. "When (BAB) and (AAL) first tried to get together nearly 10 years ago, the regulators ruled it was against the consumer interest," he said. "A link-up between (BAB) and (AAL) is still anticompetitive, and now they have the cheek of trying to add Continental (CAL) to the mix too. This triple whammy would reduce effective competition across the Atlantic and the regulators should make it absolutely clear that it would have no chance of getting off the starting grid."
Meanwhile, a possible (UAL)-(AMW)/(USA) combination, apparently being explored in the aftermath of the (DAL)-(NWA) announcement, would have to overcome considerable misgivings by pilot (FC) groups. (USA) still is struggling to integrate former America West Airlines (AMW) and former US Airways (USA) pilots (FC) into one group, creating a problematic East-West split among its flight deck (FC) crews. Air Line Pilots Assn (ALPA) (UAL) (MEC) Chairman, Steve Wallach said in a statement that a merger with (AMW)/(USA_ "would be extremely negative," adding: "Continued difficulties [after more than two-and-a-half years] associated with [(AMW)-(USA)] pilot (FC) seniority integration are well chronicled. Even those reports grossly underestimate the complexity of seniority integration, which likely will not be solved without years of litigation. US Airways (AMW)/(USA)'s pilot (FC) integration problems have created a toxic stew, as any carrier that seeks to merge with it will quickly discover." (AMW)/(USA) pilots recently rejected (ALPA) representation over frustration with the union's lack of progress in negotiations with management.
The new union ostensibly representing US Airways (AMW)/(USA)'s 5,000 pilots (FC), voiced its opposition to a potential merger with United Airlines (UAL), stating that unresolved issues relating to the merger of the former (USA) and America West Airlines (AMW) must be addressed first. The USA Airline Pilots Association (USAPA), which recently replaced the ousted Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA) as (AMW)/(USA) pilots (FC)s' labor representative, said in a statement, "US Airways (AMW)/(USA) Pilots (FC) will not support any moves towards a follow-on merger until management finishes the job of our last merger."
(USAPA) largely represents the interests of former (USA) pilots (FC), who voted to replace (ALPA) by a narrow margin over pilots (FC) from (AMW). The two groups do not work under a unified contract 33 months after the merger, still flying in separate cockpits. Former (AMW) pilots (FC) have created the (AMW) Pilots Protective Alliance (not a legally recognized union), but are technically members of (USAPA), which was formed in frustration over (ALPA)'s inability to reach a unified contract with management. Given the lack of integration of seniority lists and other concerns, United Airlines (UAL) pilots (FC) have said they will oppose a merger strongly until (AMW)/(USA) resolves the "toxic stew" of pilot (FC) integration issues related to the prior merger. (USAPA) added that (UAL)'s "financial health is a major concern" and that the Chicago-based carrier's "mounting losses" and "dismal balance sheet" mean that it "may not be the best dance partner for US Airways (AMW)/(USA)."
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) hired 20 pilots (FC) in April. The carrier is no longer interviewing or accepting Flight Crew (FC) applications. (AMW)/(USA) expects to hire 230 pilots (FC) in 2008.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) fleet service workers (MT) represented by the International Association of Machinists, ratified an agreement that brings all of the airline's ramp and baggage employees under one labor contract.
Aviapartner Cargo won a three-year deal with US Airways (AMW)/(USA) to provide full cargo handling services at 13 European stations, effective July 1.
EMB-190 (0173, N960UW), delivery.
June 2008: The US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) consolidated passenger (RASM) rose +2% to +4% in May, compared to the year-ago month. Consolidated traffic grew +0.3% to 5.58 billion against a -0.1% fall in (ASM)s to 6.83 billion. Load factor was up +0.3 point to 81.8% LF.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) launched daily, Philadelphia - Vancouver, aboard an A319. The service runs through September 2.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) and Air China (BEJ) signed a codeshare agreement that will put the (AMW)/(USA) code on (BEJ) flights to Beijing from Los Angeles (LAX), San Francisco (SFO), and New York (JFK), plus some connecting flights to Shanghai, while (BEJ) will put its code on (AMW)/(USA) service from (LAX) and (SFO) to Phoenix, Las Vegas, Charlotte, Philadelphia, and Pittsburgh.
While United Airlines (UAL) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) both reiterated that they are strong believers in consolidation, the two carriers announced that they will not enter into a merger "at this time." Since Delta Air Lines (DAL) and Northwest Airlines (NWA) announced a merger agreement in April, speculation has been rampant that (UAL) and (AMW)/(USA) would follow with a tie-up of their own, particularly since executives from both long have called for USA industry consolidation. But after preliminary talks and reviews by their respective boards, the carriers decided to squelch merger speculation formally. Both airlines' pilots (FC) had voiced fierce opposition to a (AMW)/(USA-(UAL) tie-up, a likely insurmountable obstacle to any merger deal. "After a considered review by our board of directors, United (UAL) has determined that it will not be pursuing a merger at this time, due to issues that could significantly dilute benefits from a transaction," Chairman, President & CEO, Glenn Tilton said in a message to employees. "We are evaluating other options, and will do what is right for United (UAL)."
(AMW)/(USA) Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker said in a message to workers, "After much work and many conversations with other airlines, we have come to the conclusion that consolidation involving US Airways (AMW)/(USA) will not occur at this time. This is not to say that something won't occur in the future . . . [but] it is simply unlikely that anything will happen in 2008, as our industry continues to struggle with how to function in a world with $130 per barrel oil prices."
With Continental Airlines (CAL) also recently ruling out a merger, it appears that the rapid USA market consolidation many anticipated following the (DAL)-(NWA) announcement, will not occur this year. (CAL) has left open the possibility of leaving SkyTeam (STM) and reportedly is in talks with (UAL) about a possible jump to Star Alliance (SAL).
Tilton said that "it's clear that the status quo is not sustainable" and that consolidation long term likely is needed. Parker said that "US Airways (AMW)/(USA) would benefit from participating" in a merger but that it doesn't make sense presently.
Despite the deterioration in the relationship between the East and West pilot (FC) groups at US Airways (AMW)/(USA), the subsequent lawsuit and calls for executive intervention, it appears unlikely that (AMW)/(USA) CEO, Doug Parker will inject himself into the dispute, according to a USA spokesperson. "Doug has made it very clear throughout all of these issues that we would be neutral on this," spokesperson Andrea Rader said. The disagreements between pilot (FC) groups who flew for the former US Airways (USA) [East] and America West Airlines (AMW) [West] and still work under separate contracts, are not unusual following a merger, she said. But this disagreement has moved beyond the negotiating table and into the courts following a lawsuit filed by the (AMW)/(USA) Airline Pilots Assn alleging (USAPA) harassment and intimidating behavior by former (AMW) pilots (FC). A West (AMW) pilot (FC) associated with the lawsuit said that it is time for Parker to step in. "There has been a complete lack of leadership from senior management," he said, speaking on condition of anonymity. "When you are the head of an organization, you can try and stay out of those issues, but no matter what you do, you have an impact on those issues." The dispute goes deeper than the issues outlined in the suit. Seniority continues to be a major sticking point, according to representatives from both sides. "Emotions are so high right now I don't think these guys can fly together anytime soon," the pilot (FC) said. "They believe they can intimidate us. They knew there was no basis for the suit, but they thought it would create leverage."
A May 17 letter from (USAPA) to individual West (AMW) pilots (FC) said that if a pilot (FC) fails to pay dues for representation, the union will take steps to have that pilot (FC) fired. The letter and lawsuit hardened feelings among West (AMW) pilots (FC). "(USAPA) has gone to great lengths to be fair and accommodating, but the West (AMW) pilots (FC) will not even listen to a most level-headed discussion," an East (USA) senior pilot (FC) said. "The pilots (FC) hoot, holler and disrupt (USAPA) attempts at ironing out an agreement." Rader said airline operations have not been affected by the dispute and noted that (AMW)/(USA) was ranked third in April by the USA Dept of Transportation for ontime performance. "That's not the work of a disengaged workforce," she claimed. But she said a truce would be welcome. "We would all like to get back to the table, negotiate a single agreement and get through these issues. That clearly is the way this gets resolved."
The new union representing US Airways (AMW)/(USA) pilots (FC) filed suit against a group of fellow pilots (FC) originally with America West Airlines (AMW) charging that they have engaged in harassment, extortion, racketeering and other illegal activities. The 49-page complaint, filed May 30, also alleges that the former (AMW) pilots (FC) are denying cockpit jump seat privileges to (USA) colleagues. The lawsuit is the latest in a series of contentious maneuvers that have been ongoing since the two pilot (FC) groups were forced to become one through the (USA)/(AMW) merger two years ago. In April, a group led by (USA) pilots (FC) voted to decertify its Air Line Pilots Assn chapter, replacing it with the new (USA)/(APA) Airline Pilots Assn (USAPA). Former (AMW) pilots (FC) then formed the America West Airlines (AMW) Pilots Protective Alliance (AWAPPA), which is not a legally recognized bargaining unit. The suit claims that a group of (AWAPPA) pilots (FC) named as defendants made harassing and threatening phone calls to (USAPA) and its leaders and deliberately jammed its toll-free number with thousands of "frivolous calls." In one instance cited, a doll labeled "USAPA" was found hanging by a noose inside a (USA) cockpit in St Louis. The complaint asks the court for a temporary restraining order that would ban such activities and stop the "threats of physical or economic retaliation" against those who support (USAPA). It also seeks unspecified punitive and compensatory damages along with legal fees and a trial by jury. "The defendants' and their co-conspirators' repeated and continuous acts of racketeering were neither isolated nor sporadic events," the lawsuit filed in the USA District Court of Western North Carolina claims. "They were and are a calculated series of repeated violations of law in order to destroy (USAPA) . . . by wrongful use of actual or threatened force, violence, fear and sabotage."
One pilot (FC), a senior captain formerly with (AMW) who spoke on condition of anonymity, said that there continues to be "animosity at a lot of levels." He claimed there are some pilots (FC) with far less seniority who are upset and frustrated over a lack of promotion opportunities. "The emotion involved by those affected sometimes manifests itself in ways you may not consider professional," he said.
But (USAPA) has done nothing to improve the situation, he contended. "They have gone out of their way to antagonize us. The adversarial relationship is manifested through this lawsuit. They haven't tried to embrace us or get us onboard. They have always sought to disenfranchise us because they are bigger."
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) unveiled a range of initiatives designed to negotiate what Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker called "this new and challenging environment," including introduction of a $15 charge for the first piece of checked baggage, airplane returns and up to -1,700 job cuts. Similar to its domestic rivals, (AMW)/(USA) is facing a fiscal crunch as a result of soaring fuel costs. It said its 2008 fuel expense will increase by +$1.9 billion from the previous year, to 39% of the mainline and regional total. It lost -$236 million in the first quarter. "Our industry is profoundly challenged by the dramatic increase in fuel prices, and we must write a new playbook for running a profitable airline," Parker said. "We are taking every action to operate a strong and competitive airline, while ensuring that our customers have continued access to competitively priced air travel."
The carrier will return 10 mainline airplanes through next year, cancel leases on two A330-200s scheduled to arrive in the 2009 second quarter, and is "planning to reduce additional airplanes in 2009 and 2010." Returned airplanes will comprise six 737-300s this year, and four A320s in the 2009 first half. Fourth-quarter mainline domestic capacity will be cut -6% to -8% year-over-year, above the originally planned -2% to -4%. Total fourth-quarter mainline capacity will be down -4% to -6%, with full-year capacity now projected to be -1% to -3% below 2007. Significant reductions will come at its Las Vegas base, where it will end its night operation and reduce daily departures to 81 by September 3 from a high of 141 one year before.
(AMW)/(USA) said its payroll trim will comprise approximately -300 pilots (FC), -400 flight attendants (CA), -800 airport and ground employees (MT), and -200 office and management staff. It expects front-line cuts to be accomplished through attrition, and said that "any necessary furloughs following the summer travel season, will be offset as much as possible by voluntary leaves of absence as permitted by the respective labor contracts." It also will close its lounges at Baltimore and Raleigh-Durham in addition to three arrivals lounges in Europe and three domestic cargo stations.
To generate more revenue, (AMW)/(USA) has joined American Airlines (AAL) and United Airlines (UAL) in charging for the first checked bag. The fee will apply to tickets purchased from July 9 on domestic flights and those to Canada, Latin America and the Caribbean, with certain exceptions. It will end another traditional amenity on August 1, when it begins charging $2 for nonalcoholic beverages in domestic economy (Y) cabins. New fee structures also will be applied to non-Internet ticket purchases, award redemptions and other services.
"The actions we are announcing today, coupled with our strong relative cash position and no material debt payments until 2014, will help US Airways (AMW)/(USA) persevere through these unprecedented times for our industry," Parker said.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) unveiled a range of initiatives designed to negotiate what Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker called "this new and challenging environment," including introduction of a $15 charge for the first piece of checked baggage, airplane returns and up to -1,700 job cuts. Similar to its domestic rivals, (AMW)/(USA) is facing a fiscal crunch as a result of soaring fuel costs. It said its 2008 fuel expense will increase by +$1.9 billion from the previous year, to 39% of the mainline and regional total. It lost -$236 million in the first quarter. "Our industry is profoundly challenged by the dramatic increase in fuel prices, and we must write a new playbook for running a profitable airline," Parker said. "We are taking every action to operate a strong and competitive airline, while ensuring that our customers have continued access to competitively priced air travel."
The carrier will return 10 mainline airplanes through next year, cancel leases on two A330-200s scheduled to arrive in the 2009 second quarter, and is "planning to reduce additional airplanes in 2009 and 2010." Returned airplanes will comprise six 737-300s this year, and four A320s in the 2009 first half. Fourth-quarter mainline domestic capacity will be cut -6% to -8% year-over-year, above the originally planned -2% to -4%. Total fourth-quarter mainline capacity will be down -4% to -6%, with full-year capacity now projected to be -1% to -3% below 2007. Significant reductions will come at its Las Vegas base, where it will end its night operation and reduce daily departures to 81 by September 3 from a high of 141 one year before.
(AMW)/(USA) said its payroll trim will comprise approximately -300 pilots (FC), -400 flight attendants (CA), -800 airport and ground employees (MT), and -200 office and management staff. It expects front-line cuts to be accomplished through attrition, and said that "any necessary furloughs following the summer travel season, will be offset as much as possible by voluntary leaves of absence as permitted by the respective labor contracts." It also will close its lounges at Baltimore and Raleigh-Durham in addition to three arrivals lounges in Europe and three domestic cargo stations.
To generate more revenue, (AMW)/(USA) has joined American Airlines (AAL) and United Airlines (UAL) in charging for the first checked bag. The fee will apply to tickets purchased from July 9 on domestic flights and those to Canada, Latin America and the Caribbean, with certain exceptions. It will end another traditional amenity on August 1, when it begins charging $2 for nonalcoholic beverages in domestic economy (Y) cabins. New fee structures also will be applied to non-Internet ticket purchases, award redemptions and other services. "The actions we are announcing today, coupled with our strong relative cash position and no material debt payments until 2014, will help US Airways (AMW)/(USA) persevere through these unprecedented times for our industry," Parker said.
Rockwell Collins reached a deal with US Airways (AMW)/(USA) for provision of its WXR-2100 MultiScan Hazard Detection System and other avionics for A320s and A330s. The system features advanced radar and weather assessment capabilities.
2 EMB-190s (0183, N961UW; 0184, N962UW), deliveries.
July 2008: The US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) said June consolidated passenger (RASM) rose +2% to +4% year-over-year. It flew 5.86 billion (RPM)s traffic, down -0.6%, against a +0.6% increase in capacity to 6.95 billion (ASM)s. Load factor fell -1 point to 84.4% LF.
The US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) took a $622 million noncash charge in the second quarter to write off the goodwill it had recorded on its balance sheet, that was created by the merger of the old (USA) and America West (AMW) Holdings three years ago. It said the charge was the result of an interim period goodwill impairment test performed due to the high fuel prices "that have adversely impacted the company's business." It said it also will report an $18 million noncash charge related to the decline in value of specific 737 spares. It will announce its second-quarter results on July 22.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) reported a -$567 million net loss in the second quarter, reversed from a +$263 million profit in the year-ago period, citing "the staggering increase" in fuel prices. The loss is partly the result of net special items of $466 million, including a goodwill impairment charge of $622 million. Absent the special items, the quarterly loss would have been -$101 million, reversed from a profit of +$261 million on a similar basis in the 2007 second quarter.
Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker conceded that the results were "disappointing" but noted that the entire industry was hurt by steep energy costs. He added that the carrier had made "spectacular" strides on the operations front, is working "diligently to reduce capacity and costs" and is "pleased with the early performance of our a-la-carte initiatives."
(AMW)/(USA) will slash fourth-quarter mainline capacity by -5% to -7%, a deeper cut than the previously planned -3% to -5% reduction, and will lower full-year 2009 capacity -4% to -6%. Domestic capacity will be cut -6% to -8% for the fourth quarter and -8% to -10% next year.
Second-quarter revenue rose +3.2% to $3.26 billion, while expenses including the goodwill impairment charge, increased +32.4% to $3.79 billion, producing an operating loss of -$536 million, reversed from a +$289 million profit last year. Mainline traffic grew +0.6% to 16.19 billion (RPM)s on a +0.7% lift in capacity to 19.39 billion (ASM)s, producing a load factor of 83.5% LF, flat year-over-year. Yield increased +1.5% to 13.67 cents as (PRASM) rose +1.6% to 11.42 cents and (CASM) excluding special items, lifted +13.6% to 12.92 cents. (CASM) excluding special items and fuel, was up +4% to 8.32 cents.
A closer look at (AMW)/(USA)'s second-quarter fuel costs provides insight into the challenges facing the industry. It actually reduced fuel consumption year-over-year by -2.4% to 299.1 million gallons, but average fuel price leaped +69.2% to $3.63 per gallon, and overall fuel expense soared +58% to $1.91 billion. Including hedging, average airplane fuel price rose +38.9% to $2.99 per gallon.
CFO, Derek Kerr said that (AMW)/(USA)'s hedging strategy resulted in gains of $192 million in the quarter. "Had the average price per gallon remained constant from the second quarter 2007, our total fuel expense, including realized gains/losses on fuel hedging instruments would have been approximately -$390 million lower," he said.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) flight dispatchers represented by the Transport Workers Union (TWU) said public claims from pilots (FC) that the airline is pressuring them to use less fuel are "nothing more than hot air," according to a statement posted on the (TWU) website. "Fuel loads are carefully planned by a certificated airplane dispatcher, who shares responsibility for the preflight planning and safety of the flight with the pilot (FC). The company does not determine or plan the fuel loads. I can say unequivocally that there has been absolutely no pressure on the dispatchers at US Airways (AMW)/(USA) to reduce the fuel loads," (TWU) Local 545 President, Don Wright said.
In an advertisement in "USA Today," pilots (FC) accused (AMW)/(USA) of "a program of intimidation to pressure your captain to reduce fuel loads." Wright said that "if a crew (FC) requests more fuel, dispatchers have been trained to ask them if there is anything we failed to consider in our planning. We want our crews (FC) to be comfortable with the fuel supply and we work to accommodate their needs." He said airplanes carry enough fuel for an extra 60 to 90 minutes of flying.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) will remove InFlight Entertainment (IFE) from domestic flights this fall in order to save approximately -$10 million per year, VP Sales & Marketing, Travis Christ told "Bloomberg News." "We simply can't afford to do it anymore," he said. Bloomberg reported that video systems aboard (AMW)/(USA)'s A320s will be shut down November 1, and removed from airplanes during maintenance. It said passenger demand has dropped ((AMW)/(USA) charges $5 for headsets) and the (IFE) systems can add some +500 lbs to each airplane.
The six largest USA network carriers announced a partnership with Sojern Inc, an Omaha company funded by Norwest Venture Partners and Trident Capital, that will offer advertising on boarding passes. Delta Air Lines (DAL) launched the service for passengers flying to Las Vegas and "shortly" will roll it out to its remaining domestic gateways. "With millions of our passengers checking in online . . . the boarding pass becomes an increasingly valuable tool for sharing relevant, timely offers and destination-specific content with our customers before they travel," (DAL) General Manager Global Partnerships, Marc Ferguson said. American Airlines (AAL), Continental Airlines (CAL), Northwest Airlines (NWA), United Airlines (UAL) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) will roll out the service before year end. Sojern Founder Gordon Whitten said passengers have indicated that they "love the concept" and that "advertisers are also clamoring to get involved." It confirmed that individual airlines will continue to operate and develop their respective websites, while Sojern will provide the advertising and other "content" directly on the boarding passes. Content will include items such as destination-specific weather forecasts, restaurants "that fit [passengers'] budget and lifestyle," event schedules and targeted advertising. The carriers will hold an equity stake in Sojern. (AMW)/(USA) VP Sales & Marketing, Travis Christ said Sojern "has found the right formula" for the project.
August 2008: The US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) enjoyed a +2% to +4% year-over-year increase in consolidated passenger (RASM) in July. It flew 6.11 billion consolidated (RPM)s traffic last month, down -0.6%, against a +0.8% increase in capacity to 7.23 billion (ASM)s. Load factor fell -1.1 points to 84.6% LF.
1st 6 months = 49.37 billion (RPK)s - - see "USA-08TOPWLD6MTHSRPK."
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) announced plans to launch daily, Philadelphia - Tel Aviv service in July 2009, contingent on approval from the USA Department of Transportation and the Israeli government. It will use A330-200s scheduled to be delivered in the first half of next year. Tel Aviv would be (AMW)/(USA)'s only Middle East destination.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) announced it will begin charging $1 to $2 for coffee, sodas, and other non-alcoholic beverages on flights. The Association of Flight Attendants objected to the new charges, which the flight attendants (CA) are required to enforce. (AMW)/(USA) estimates the beverage charges and other new fees will generate +$500 million in annual revenue.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) said Merrill Lynch, the underwriter of its public offering of 19 million shares of common stock at $8.50 per share, exercised the entire overallotment option of 2.85 million shares. The resulting net proceeds from the offering are expected to be around $179 million.
September 2008: In July 2009, (AMW)/(USA) A330-200 service from Philadelphia to Tel Aviv. Last year, a record 500,000 Americans visited Israel.
Joe Beery, Senior VP & Chief Information Officer (CIO), Travis Christ, VP Sales & Marketing, and Larry LeSueur, VP Culture, Recruitment & Leadership Development, are leaving US Airways (USA) this month. The departures are not part of the recent management layoffs at the airline.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) expects to furlough 175 pre-merger America West (AMW) pilots (FC) and 125 pre-merger US Airways (USA) pilots (FC) by the end of 2008.
October 2008: The US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) said September consolidated (RASM) increased +8% to +10%, year-over-year, and that ancillary revenue initiatives were "exceeding our expectations and driving both financial and operational improvements." The group flew 4.81 billion (RPM)s traffic, down -1.1%, against a -3.4% drop in capacity (ASM)s to 6.05 billion. Load factor rose +1.8 points to 79.4% LF.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) reported a third-quarter net loss of -$862 million, reversed from a profit of +$177 million in the year-ago period, and like other USA carriers, cited fuel hedging charges as a principal cause. The airline suffered a noncash loss of -$488 million on fuel hedging owing to the recent drop in oil prices, and also incurred another -$135 million in special charges. Excluding the special items, its loss would have been -$242 million. But Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker said that aggressive capacity cuts, a la carte pricing and significantly lower oil prices put (AMW)/(USA) in a sound position even in a recession. "It's extremely difficult for us to imagine a demand decline that wouldn't be offset by [lower] fuel prices, new ancillary revenue sources and capacity cuts," he told analysts and reporters. He noted that fees for first checked bags generate +$6 million weekly and are just one of many charges (AMW)/(USA) imposes. "It's certainly not outrageous to assume [profitability in 2009] with oil prices so low," he said.
The carrier also touted a liquidity boost and said it has raised $950 million since mid-August, closing this week on $800 million of these transactions with $400 million used to prepay its $1.6 billion bank debt facility. Additionally, it was announced that Republic Airways Holdings is providing (AMW)/(USA) with a $35 million loan to be repaid between October 2009 and October 2011.
Third-quarter revenue rose +7.4% to $3.26 billion, while expenses surged +39.4% to $3.95 billion, producing an operating loss of -$689 million, reversed from an operating profit of +$202 million last year. Mainline traffic declined -0.8% to 16.27 billion (RPM)s on a -1.4% drop in capacity to 19.4 billion (ASM)s, producing a load factor of 83.9% LF, down -0.5 point. Yield increased +3.8% to 13.5 cents as (PRASM) heightened +4.4% to 11.32 cents, and (CASM) jumped +44.1% to 16.01 cents. (CASM) excluding fuel and special items, lifted +5.3% to 8.08 cents.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) will launch daily, seasonal service from Philadelphia to Birmingham, UK, (on May 12), and Oslo Gardermoen (May 21), aboard a 757.
Beginning April 21, 2009, (AMW)/(USA) daily seasonal service to Paris' Charles De Gaulle (CDG) airport from the airline's largest hub at Charlotte (CLT), North Carolina. (AMW)/(USA) currently serves London's Gatwick (LGW) Airport and Frankfurt International Airport (FRA) from its Charlotte hub and also code shares with Lufthansa (DLH) on Munich (MUN) service from Charlotte. This nonstop service will be operated with 767 airplanes with seating for 18 in Envoy class (C) and 186Y in the main cabin.
Goodrich (BFG) inked a deal with US Airways (AMW)/(USA) to refurbish half its (CFM56-5B) thrust reversers and provide initial exchange units to facilitate a maintenance program. The contract will run through 2012 under the Goodrich (BFG) Aerostructures Prime Solutions program. The work will take place in Foley, Alabama.
November 2008: US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) flew 4.89 consolidated (RPM)s traffic in October, a -3.5% decrease year-over-year, against a -5% fall in capacity (ASM)s to 6.02 billion. Load factor increased +1.3 points to 81.3% LF.
1st 6 months = 49.37 billion (RPK)s traffic (-.08%); -.93% (ASK)s capacity; 81.3% LF; 176.99 million (FTK)s freight traffic (-6.57%); 27.94 million passengers (-4.77%).
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) confirmed in a filing with the USA Securities & Exchange Commission that it expects mainline (CASM) excluding fuel, special items and transition expenses to rise +6 to +-8% year-over-year, as it cuts capacity -5% to -7% (ASM).
737-3G7 (24711), returned to lessor.
December 2008: US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) flew 4.42 billion consolidated (RPM)s traffic in November, a -6.9% decrease from the year-ago month. Capacity fell -5.9% to 5.73 billion (ASM)s, and load factor was down -0.8 point to 77% LF.
(AMW)/(USA) was selected by the USA Department of Transportation to operate daily, Washington National (DCA) - Akron/Canton service beginning by January 25. Slots became available, when AirTran Airways (CQT) ceased operating (DCA) - Milwaukee on September 3. Midwest Airlines (MWX) also applied for the slots.
737-301 (23936), returned to (GEF) and scrapped. 737-3B7 (23862), WFU. 757-2B7 (27199), returned to lessor.
January 2009: In December the US Airways group (AMW)/(USA) flew 4.82 consolidated (RPM)s traffic, down -0.9% from the year-ago month, against a -6.2% fall in capacity to 6.06 billion (ASM)s. Load factor rose +4.3 points to 79.6% LF. President, Scott Kirby said consolidated passenger (RASM) was up +3% to +5% year-over-year and that the carrier is "cautiously optimistic about the demand environment."
(AMW)/(USA) posted a 2008 net loss of -$2.21 billion, reversed from a +$427 million profit in 2007, as it contended with a roller-coaster oil market that led to significant losses on fuel hedges. In addition to -$496 million of unrealized losses on mark-to-market hedging adjustments, (AMW)/(USA) recorded a $622 million noncash charge to write off goodwill created by the America West Airlines (AMW) merger. (AMW)/(USA) has moved quickly to reduce its hedging position in 2009. Executive VP & CFO, Derek Kerr said 14% of its fuel consumption is hedged for the year, with none in the fourth quarter.
President, Scott Kirby told analysts and reporters that the 2009 revenue environment is "murky," adding, "Our forward bookings and revenue data are significantly more volatile than they have been in the past." Complicating matters more is a "disappointing" pricing environment, he commented. Reduced domestic capacity and $400 to $500 million in expected revenue from a la carte pricing initiatives will help buffer 2009's expected difficulties, he said.
Full-year 2008 revenue increased +3.6% to $12.12 billion while expenses climbed +24.6% to $13.92 billion, producing an operating loss of -$1.8 billion, reversed from an operating profit of +$533 million in 2007. Mainline traffic declined -1.1% to 60.57 billion (RPM)s on a -2.2% lowering of capacity to 74.15 billion (ASM)s, resulting in a load factor of 81.7% LF, up +0.9 point. Yield lifted +1.7% to 13.51 cents as (PRASM) increased +2.9% to 11.04 cents and (CASM) leaped +29.7% to 14.66 cents. (CASM) excluding fuel, special items and fuel hedging losses heightened +5.7% to 8.36 cents. Kirby said the airline is in a good position because American carriers have slashed domestic capacity, creating a more stable domestic market. He noted that "we're starting to see the international market underperform the domestic market," a scenario that he insisted favors USA relative to its competitors because only 20% of its flying is international.
(AMW)/(USA) filed an application with the USA Department of Transportation to operate daily, year-round 767 flights between Charlotte and Rio de Janeiro starting later this year. (AMW)/(USA) will launch daily seasonal Charlotte - Paris Charles De Gaulle on April 21 aboard a 767.
(AMW)/(USA) promoted Senior VP & CFO, Derek Kerr to Executive VP (he will remain CFO) and named Sabre Holdings Senior VP Air Services, Brad Jensen as Senior VP & CIO.
ACCDT: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) flight 1549, an A320-214 (CFM56-5B4/P) (1044, /99 N106US) en route to Charlotte from LaGuardia, was involved in an accident in New York at approximately 3:03 pm Eastern Time. The flight was operated with 150 passengers and a crew of two pilots (FC) and three flight attendants (CA).
With both engines out, a cool-headed pilot (FC) maneuvered his crowded jetliner along the Hudson River and ditched it in the frigid water, and all 155 on board were pulled to safety as the plane slowly sank. It was, the governor said, "a miracle on the Hudson." One victim suffered two broken legs, a paramedic said, but there were no other reports of serious injuries.
The plane struck a flock of birds during takeoff minutes earlier at LaGuardia Airport and was submerged up to its windows in the river by the time rescuers arrived in Coast Guard vessels and ferries. Some passengers waited in water up to their knees, standing on the wing of the plane for help. Police divers had to rescue some of the passengers from underwater, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said. Among those on board was one infant who appeared to be fine, the mayor said.
In a city still wounded from the "9/11" aerial attack on the World Trade Center, authorities were quick to assure the public that terrorism wasn't involved. Helen Rodriguez, a paramedic who was among the first to arrive at the scene, said she saw one woman with two broken legs. Fire officials said others were evaluated for hypothermia, bruises and other minor injuries. "We had a miracle on 34th Street. I believe now we have had a miracle on the Hudson," Governor David Paterson said.
The crash took place on a 20-degree day, one of the coldest of the season in New York. State environmental officials estimated the water was 41 degrees.
"It would appear that the pilot (FC) did a masterful job of landing the plane in the river, and then making sure everybody got out," Bloomberg said. "The captain (FC) said, `Brace for impact because we're going down,'" Kolodjay said. He said passengers put their heads in their laps and started praying. He said the plane hit the water pretty hard, but he was fine. "It was intense. You've got to give it to the pilot (FC). He made a hell of a landing," Kolodjay said.
Another passenger, Fred Berretta, who was on his way home to Charlotte from a business trip, told "CNN" doors were opened on both sides of the plane "as soon as we hit the water." Witnesses said the plane's pilot (FC) appeared to guide the plane down. Bob Read, a television producer who saw the crash from his office window, said it appeared to be a "controlled descent."
Paramedics treated at least 78 patients, fire officials said. Coast Guard boats rescued 35 people who were immersed in the frigid water and ferried them to shore. Some of the rescued were shivering and wrapped in white blankets, their feet and legs soaked. One commuter ferry, the Thomas Jefferson of the company NY Waterway, arrived within minutes of the crash, and some of its own riders grabbed life vests and lines of rope and tossed them to plane passengers in the water. "They were cheering when we pulled up," ferry captain, Vincent Lombardi. "We had to pull an elderly woman out of a raft in a sling. She was crying .... People were panicking. They said, 'hurry up, hurry up.'" Two police scuba divers said they pulled another woman from a lifeboat "frightened out of her mind" and lethargic from hypothermia. Another woman fell off a rescue raft, and the divers said they swam over and put her on a Coast Guard boat.
US Airways Flight 1549 took off at 3:26 p.m. It was less than a minute later when the pilot (FC) reported a "double bird strike" and said he needed to return to LaGuardia, said Doug Church, a spokesman for the National Air Traffic Controllers Association. He said the controller told the pilot (FC) to divert to an airport in nearby Teterboro, New Jersey. It was not clear why the pilot (FC) did not land at Teterboro. Church said there was no "mayday" call from the plane's transponder. The plane splashed into the water off roughly 48th Street in midtown Manhattan — one of the busiest and most closely watched stretches of the river.
The pilot (FC) was Chelsey B Sullenberger III. Sullenberger, 58, described himself in an online professional profile as a 29-year employee of US Airways (USA). He started his own consulting business, Safety Reliability Methods Inc, two years ago.
The plane remained afloat but sinking slowly as it drifted downriver. Gradually, the fuselage went under until about half of the tail fin and rudder was above water. Bloomberg said the airplane finally wound up near Battery Park, at the lower tip of Manhattan and about four miles from where the pilot (FC) ditched it. SEE ATTACHED PHOTOS - - "USA-AMW-ACCDT-JAN09-A/B/C/D."
(AMW)/(USA) has sent $5,000 to each of the 150 passengers on board Flight 1549, which was scheduled to fly to Charlotte, to compensate them for lost luggage.
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) says there were about 65,000 bird strikes to civil airplanes in the United States from 1990 to 2005, or about one for every 10,000 flights. "They literally just choke out the engine and it quits," said Joe Mazzone, a retired Delta Air Lines (DAL) pilot (FC). He said air traffic control (ATC) towers routinely alert pilots (FC) if there are birds in the area.
The Hudson crash took place almost exactly 27 years after an Air Florida plane bound for Tampa crashed into the Potomac River just after takeoff from Washington National Airport, killing 78 people. Five people on that flight survived.
On December 20, a Continental Airlines (CAL) plane veered off a runway and slid into a snowy field at the Denver airport, injuring 38 people. That was the first major crash of a commercial airliner in the United States since August 27, 2006, when 49 people were killed after a Comair (COI) jetliner mistakenly took off from the wrong runway in Lexington, Kentucky.
According to "AirSafe," Thursday's accident was the first controlled ditching of a commercial jet airplane since May 1970, when an (ALM) DC-9 on its way from New York (JFK) to St Maarten executed a water landing after three missed approaches and an attempted diversion to St Croix. Twenty-three of the 63 people onboard were killed. In October 1963 an Aeroflot (ARO) Tu-124 diverted to Leningrad with a landing gear problem and ran out of fuel. It landed in the Neva River. All 52 onboard survived.
A more recent event involved an attempted water landing that went awry. In November 1996, an Ethiopian Airlines (ETH) 767-200ER crashed while attempting to ditch during a hijacking. The 767 had run out of fuel and the cockpit crew (FC) reportedly was battling a hijacker for control as it hit the water wingtip first and broke up, killing 125 of the 175 on board. It did not appear to be configured for landing.
The following is a first-hand account of this US Air (AMW)/(USA) accident:
I wanted to share this with all of you. A partner in our firm was on
this flight last Thursday. In our weekly news letter, he shared his
"Every day is a great day now."
As many of you now know, Gerry McNamara (New York/Charlotte) was on US
Airways Flight 1549 last week. We caught up with him to discuss the
harrowing incident and - in a departure from our usual format - present his stirring account as told to us:
Thursday was a difficult day for all of us at the firm and I left the
Park Avenue office early afternoon to catch a cab bound for LaGuardia
I was scheduled for a 5pm departure, but able to secure a seat on the
earlier flight scheduled to leave at 3PM. As many of us who fly
frequently often do, I recall wondering if I'd just placed myself on a
flight I shouldn't be on!
Just prior to boarding I finished up a conference call with my
associate, Jenn Sparks (New York), and our placement, the CIO of United Airlines. When I told him that I was about to board a US Airways flight, we all had a little fun with it.
I remember walking on the plane and seeing a fellow with grey hair in
the cockpit and thinking "that's a good thing ... I like to see grey hair in the cockpit!"
I was seated in 8F, on the starboard side window and next to a young
business man. The New York to Charlotte flight is one I've taken what
seems like hundreds of times over the years. We take off north over the Bronx and as we climb, turn west over the Hudson River to New Jersey and tack south. I love to fly, always have, and this flight plan gives a great view of several NY landmarks including Yankee Stadium and the George Washington Bridge.
I had started to point out items of interest to the gentleman next to me when we heard a terrible crash - a sound no one ever wants to hear while flying - and then the engines wound down to a screeching halt. 10 seconds later, there was a strong smell of jet fuel. I knew we would be landing and thought the pilot would take us down no doubt to Newark Airport. As we began to turn south, I noticed the pilot lining up on the river, still - I thought - en route for Newark.
Next thing we heard was "Brace for impact!" - a phrase I had heard many years before as an active duty Marine Officer but never before on a commercial air flight.
Everyone looked at each other in shock. It all happened so fast we were astonished! We began to descend rapidly and it started to sink in. This is the last flight. I'm going to die today. This is it. I recited my favorite bible verse, the Lord's Prayer, and asked God to take care of my wife, children, family and friends.
When I raised my head, I noticed people texting their friends and
family .... getting off a last message. M y blackberry was turned off and in my trouser pocket ... no time to get at it. Our descent continued and I prayed for courage to control my fear and help if able.
I quickly realized that one of two things was going to happen, neither
of them good. We could hit by the nose, flip and break up, leaving few if any survivors, bodies, cold water, fuel. Or we could hit one of the wings and roll and flip with the same result. I tightened my seat belt as tight as I could possibly get it so I would remain intact.
As we came in for the landing, I looked out the windows and remember
seeing the buildings in New Jersey, the cliffs in Weehawken, and then
the piers. The water was dark green and sure to be freezing cold. The stewardesses were yelling in unison "Brace! Brace! Brace!"
It was a violent hit - the water flew up over my window - but we bobbed up and were all amazed that we remained intact.
There was some panic - people jumping over seats and running towards the doors, but we soon got everyone straightened out and calmed down. There were a lot of people that took leadership roles in little ways. Those sitting at the doors over the wing did a fantastic job ... they were opened in a New York second! Everyone worked together - teamed up and in groups to figure out how to help each other.
I exited on the starboard side of the plane, 3 or 4 rows behind my seat through a door over the wing and was, I believe, the 10th or 12th person out. I took my seat cushion as a flotation device and once outside saw I was the only one who did .... none of us remembered to take the yellow inflatable life vests from under the seat.
We were standing in 6 to 8 inches of water and it was freezing. There were two women on the wing, one of whom slipped off into the water. Another passenger and I pulled her back on and had her kneel down to keep from falling off again. By that point we were totally soaked and absolutely frozen from the icy wind.
The ferries were the first to arrive, and although they're not made for rescue, they did an incredible job. I know this river, having swum in it as a boy. The Hudson is an estuary - part salt and part fresh water - and moves with the tide. I could tell the tide was moving out because we were tacking slowly south towards Ellis Island, The Statue of Liberty, and The Battery.
The first ferry boat pulled its bow up to the tip of the wing, and the
first mate lowered the Jacobs ladder down to us. We got a couple people up the ladder to safety, but the current was strong pushing the stern of the boat into the inflatable slide and we were afraid it would puncture it ... there must have been 25 passengers in it by now. Only two or three were able to board the first ferry before it moved away.
Another ferry came up, and we were able to get the woman that had fallen into the water on the ladder, but she just couldn't move her legs and fell off. Back onto the ladder she went; however, the ferry had to back away because of the swift current. A helicopter arrived on station (nearly blowing us all off the wing) and followed the ferry with the woman on the ladder. We lost view of the situation but I believe the helicopter lowered its basket to rescue her.
As more ferries arrived, we were able to get people up on the boats a
few at a time. The fellow in front of me fell off the ladder and into
the water. When we got him back on the ladder, he could not move his legs to climb. I couldn't help him from my position so I climbed up the ladder to the ferry deck where the first mate and I hoisted the Jacobs ladder with him on it ... when he got close enough we grabbed his trouser belt and hauled him on deck. We were all safely off the wing.
We could not stop shaking. Uncontrollable shaking. The only thing I had with me was my blackberry, which had gotten wet and was not working. (It started working again a few hours later).
The ferry took us to the Weehawken Terminal in New Jersey where I borrowed a phone and called my wife to let her know I was okay. The second call I made was to Jenn. I knew she would be worried about me and could communicate to the rest of the firm that I was fine. At the terminal, first responders assessed everyone's condition and sent people to the hospital as needed. As we pulled out of Weehawken, my history kicked in and I recall it was the site of the famous duel between Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr in 1804. Thankfully I left town in better condition than Mr Hamilton who died of a mortal wound the next day! I stayed with my sister on Long Island that evening, then flew home the next day.
I am struck by what was truly a miracle. Had this happened a few hours later, it would have been pitch dark and much harder to land. Ferries would no longer have been running after rush hour and it would not have been the same uplifting story. Surely there would have been fatalities, hypothermia, an absolute disaster!
I witnessed the best of humanity that day. I and everyone on that plane survived and have been given a second chance. It struck me that in our work we continuously seek excellence to solve our client's leadership problems. We talk to clients all the time about the importance of experience and the ability to execute. Experience showed up big time on Flight 1549 as our pilot was a dedicated, trained, experienced professional who executed flawlessly when he had to.
I have received scores of emails from across the firm and I am so
grateful for the outpouring of interest and concern. We all fly a great deal or work with someone who does and so I wanted to share this story - the story of a miracle. I am thankful to be here to tell the tale.
There is a great deal to be learned including: Why has this happened to me? Why have I survived and what am I supposed to do with this gift? For me, the answers to these questions and more will come over time, but already I find myself being more patient and forgiving, less critical and judgmental.
For now I have 4 lessons I would like to share:
1. Cherish your families as never before and go to great lengths to
keep your promises.
2. Be thankful and grateful for everything you have and don't worry
about the things you don't have.
3. Keep in shape. You never know when you'll be called upon to save
your own life, or help someone else save theirs.
4. When you fly, wear practical clothing. You never know when you'll end up in an emergency or on an icy wing in flip flops and pajamas and of absolutely no use to yourself or anyone else.
Thanks to all who have reached out ... I look forward to seeing you soon!
It's amazing what computer graphic artists can create. Here is a link to a re-creation of the US Airways (AMW)/(USA) flight, takeoff to touchdown, with Air Traffic Control (ATC) radio transmissions:://venturebeat.com/2009/02/09/scene-systems-uses-animations-to-reconstruct-scenes-such-as-sullys-crash-landing/
Another amazing one is:
A320-232 (527, N619AW), WFU.
February 2009: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) said January consolidated passenger (RASM) fell -2% to -4% year-over-year. Traffic was down -6.2% to 4.5 billion (RPM)s against a -6.8% decline in capacity to 6 billion (ASM)s. Load factor rose +0.5 point to 75% LF.
(AMW)/(USA) told employees it will lay off -233 ramp workers and gate/ticket agents in 10 cities owing to capacity cuts and the loss of contracts to provide ground services to other airlines at affected airports. Las Vegas, Pittsburgh and Tucson will see the biggest reductions. "These are uncertain times marked by less business (C) flying, fewer family vacations and rising unemployment," (AMW)/(USA) Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker wrote in a note to employees cited by the "Associated Press."
(USA)/(AMW) will return complimentary beverage service to the coach cabin on all mainline and US Airways Express flights beginning March 1. (USA)/(AMW) has been charging for nonalcoholic beverages ($2 for soda/juice, $1 for coffee/tea) as part of its transition to a more a la carte business since last August. Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker said (USA)/(AMW) remains "firmly committed" to a la carte pricing but that it was at a "disadvantage" as the only large network carrier in the USA to charge for drinks. It still expects to generate +$400 to +$500 million in 2009 from other a la carte items such as checked-bag fees and seat upgrades.
757-225 (22209), returned to lessor and scrapped. A320-231 (091), returned to (GEF).
March 2009: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) said February consolidated passenger (RASM) fell -9% to -11% year-over-year, although total (RASM) dropped just -5% to -7%, thanks to a la carte revenue initiatives. It flew 4.19 billion consolidated (RPM)s traffic, down -9.3%, against a -9% drop in (ASM)s capacity to 5.48 billion. Load factor dipped -0.2 point to 76.5% LF.
(AMW)/(USA) President, Scott Kirby said in a conference call with investors that March ticket revenue has improved over the first two months of 2009 and that the carrier has "been cautiously optimistic the last couple of weeks" even though leisure fares are falling. Demand is stable and ancillary revenue initiatives are mitigating the impact of falling yields, he said. CFO, Derek Kerr said (AMW)/(USA) has arranged financing for 20 of the 25 deliveries scheduled for this year, excluding five A330s. "We want to take them, Airbus (EDS) wants to deliver them to us, so we will come up with some kind of solution," he said.
(AMW)/(USA) expects to generate $400 to $500 million this year in ancillary revenue, according to President, Scott Kirby. Speaking at the airline's media day in Phoenix, Kirby said that after initial negative reaction, there has been "very little consumer pushback" to the new fees. Ancillary revenue contributed +$165 million to (AMW)/(USA) last year, with +$116.5 million coming from the first-bag fee, +$37.6 million from the second-bag fee, +$5.3 million from the Choice Seats program and +$5.7 million from increased beverage fees.
(AMW)/(USA) was the only American major airline to charge for soft drinks, a policy it dropped this year owing to both consumer complaints and lack of competitive match. Kirby along with Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker expressed regret that those charges were not matched. Executive VP & COO, Robert Isom said that the soft drink fees could have brought in +$10 million this year and also helped reduce cabin clutter and waste. Parker noted that passengers are checking approximately -20% fewer bags, and "with -20% fewer bags in the belly, we can do a much better job connecting people with their bags." Kirby also said (AMW)/(USA) has not seen any share shift to Southwest Airlines (SWA), its closest competitor, as a result of the new fees. (SWA) does not charge for checked bags or other ancillary products. He said last week that the carrier expects rising ancillary revenue to compensate for falling yields.
(AMW)/(USA) Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker, responding to reports that his counterpart at Continental Airlines (CAL), Larry Kellner, did not oppose re-regulation of commercial airlines, said, "In general, [re-regulation] is exactly the wrong direction." Parker said one of the industry's major problems is that it has not been truly deregulated. "We've spent 31 years trying to get deregulated."
(AMW)/(USA) said it will test the Lumexis Fiber-To-The-Screen (FTTS) In-Flight Entertainment (IFE) system on certain flights. The (FTTS) fiberoptic technology reduces system weight by up to -50% and can offer high-definition content, the companies said. Inflight Canada designed and monitored the installation of an (FTTS) system on an (AMW)/(USA) A320 that will serve Phoenix, Atlanta and Orange County.
(AMW)/(USA) named Indigo Partners' Stephen Johnson as Executive VP Corporate & General Counsel.
(AMW)/(USA) was granted tentative route authority by the USA Department of Transportation to operate a daily, Charlotte - Rio de Janeiro Galeao service. (AMW)/(USA) will use a two-class, 204-seat 767 on the route and plans to launch in the fall.
A321-231 (3858, N510UW), delivery.
April 2009: The US Airways Group said March consolidated passenger (RASM) fell an estimated -17% to -19% year-over-year, although total (RASM) dropped -13% to -15% including ancillary revenue. Group airlines flew 5.09 billion (RPM)s during the month, down -8.8% year-over-year, against a -5.9% decline in capacity to 6.26 billion (ASM)s. Load factor fell -2.5 points to 81.3% LF.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) reported a first-quarter net loss of -$103 million, narrowed from a net deficit of -$237 million in the year-ago period, and said it made "significant improvements" absent special items. Excluding net special credits and realized losses/gains on fuel hedging, (AMW)/(USA) said its net loss would have been -$63 million in the quarter compared to a -$321 million loss on a similar basis in the year-ago period. With international demand, particularly for business (C) travel, dropping rapidly and badly hurting other major USA carriers, Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker claimed that "our relatively higher domestic enplanements . . . means that we have a greater ability to capitalize . . . both in the current economic environment and also when the economy turns around."
Speaking to analysts and reporters, he added, "We have less international exposure than [(AMW)/(USA)'s competitors] do and that turns out to be good right now . . . [The domestic market] is actually performing reasonably well right now."
He also touted (AMW)/(USA)'s "great success with a la carte pricing" and said it will continue to reap rewards from its array of ancillary fees and potential future fees. To that end, (AMW)/(USA) announced that passengers can pay checked bag fees ($15 for the first, $25 for the second on flights in the Americas) online at its website and will be charged an extra $5 per bag if the fees are paid at the airport for flights booked beginning now for travel from July 9.
(AMW)/(USA) competes with Southwest Airlines (SWA), which does not charge checked bag fees, on a number of its domestic routes, but President, Scott Kirby said the fees on those routes are still "revenue positive." The number of customers that have left (AMW)/(USA) for (SWA) owing to the bag fees is small enough to be "lost in the noise of our data," he said.
First-quarter revenue declined -13.5% to $2.46 billion, while expenses lowered -18.3% to $2.48 billion, producing an operating loss of -$25 million, narrowed from an operating loss of -$196 million in the year-ago period. Mainline traffic dropped -8.1% to 13.31 billion (RPM)s on a -7.4% cut in mainline capacity to 16.98 billion (ASM)s, leading to a load factor of 78.4% LF, down -0.6 point. Yield decreased -10.2% to 12.1 cents as (PRASM) sank -10.9% to 9.49 cents and (CASM) dipped -12% to 11.05 cents. (CASM) ex-fuel heightened +0.7% to 8.63 cents.
Parker, while declining to give a specific forecast, said it is not "a stretch to say" that (AMW)/(USA) and other American carriers could earn full-year profits.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) and Qatar Airways (QTA) announced a code share agreement covering (QTA) flights between Doha and London Gatwick (LGW), Madrid (MAD), Manchester (MAN), Milan Malpensa (MXP), Stockholm Arlanda (ARL), Zurich (ZRH) and Athens (ATH), Dubai, and Kuwait City. (QTA) will place its code on USA flights from (LGW), London Heathrow, Frankfurt, (MAD), (MAN), (MXP), (ARN), (ZRH), Paris Charles de Gaulle, Munich, Rome Fiumicino and (ATH). The deal is subject to government approvals.
(AMW)/(USA) named former Eos Airlines (EOS) Senior VP Guest Experience, Hector Adler as VP In-flight Services.
A321-211s (3879, N196UW; 3881, N519UW), deliveries.
May 2009: US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) said April consolidated passenger (RASM) fell -8% to -10% year-over-year and total (RASM) was down -4% to -6%. Group airlines flew 4.04 billion (RPM)s traffic, down -5.8%, against an -8.3% fall in capacity to 4.72 billion (ASM)s. Load factor rose +1.5 points to 84.1% LF.
(AMW)/(USA) announced the sale of 15.2 million shares of common stock and $75 million in convertible senior notes due 2014, which are expected to raise approximately $150 million combined. (AMW)/(USA) said it intends to grant the underwriters an option to purchase an additional 2.3 million shares and $11.3 million in notes to cover any over-allotments. Citi and Morgan Stanley are joint book-running managers.
The US Airways Group said that it expects to raise $234 million, up from $150 million, in aggregate net proceeds from the sale of common stock and convertible notes after underwriters exercised in full their options to purchase additional securities to cover over-allotments. (AMW)/(USA) will issue 17,480,000 shares of common stock (including 2,280,000 additional shares to cover over-allotments), and a total of $172.5 million aggregate principal amount of its new 7.25% convertible senior notes due 2014 (including $22.5 million to cover over-allotments). Proceeds will be used for general corporate purposes. Citi and Morgan Stanley are the joint book-running managers for both offerings.
(AMW)/(USA) starts new nonstop service, Philadelphia - Birmingham, UK, operated with a 757 Extended Twin Engine Operations (ETOPS) equipped airplane with 12 business class (C) and 164 economy (Y) seats. This service precedes other 2009 new offerings to Oslo, Norway, and Tel Aviv to begin later this summer. (AMW)/(USA) launched seasonal daily, Philadelphia - Oslo Gardermoen service aboard a 757.
(AMW)/(USA) will launch daily, Charlotte - Rio de Janeiro Galeao service on December 2. Route will be (AMW)/(USA)'s first to South America and will be operated by a 204-seat, two-class 767.
A321-231 (3924, N520UW), delivery.
June 2009: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) said consolidated May passenger (RASM) declined -18% to -20% year-over-year, while total (RASM) was down -14% to -16%. It estimated a -$20 million loss in revenue owing to the swine flu scare. Group airlines flew 5.29 billion consolidated (RPM)s traffic, down -5.2%, while capacity fell -5.8% to 6.43 billion (ASM)s. Load factor rose +0.4 point to 82.2% LF.
Started five times a week Philadelphia - Birmingham International airport, UK. Westbound passengers can connect to other USA cities such as Boston, Chicago, Fort Lauderdale, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Orlando, Miami, San Francisco and Tampa -- SEE ATTACHED ARTICLE - - AMW-USA-BIRMINGHAM UK-JUNE09." (AMW)/(USA) will launch daily, Charlotte - Honolulu service December 17 aboard a 767.
(AMW)/(USA) named Northwest Airlines (NWA) Assistant Treasurer, Keith Bush as VP Financial Planning & Analysis, and promoted Managing Director Technology Delivery, Todd Christy to VP Business Technology.
FltOps.com, a service for professional pilots (FC), recently released a report of what each major USA carrier pays its captains and first officers. For the eleven largest USA airlines, including freight carriers FedEx (FED) and (UPS), the average annual pay for a first-year first officer flying the smallest mainline airplane is about $36,000. But the range between the best and worst paying airlines is large, with (FED) paying $51,000 and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) just $22,000. Southwest Airlines (SWA) is the second highest paying at the entry level ($50,000), while Continental Airlines (CAL) and United Airlines (UAL) are tied for second last at $27,000. At the other end of the scale are long tenured captains flying the largest airplanes, who earn an average of $165,000 per year. Again, the cargo carriers are tops with (UPS) and (FED) paying $231,000 and $211,000, respectively. The best paying passenger airline is (SWA) ($181,000), quite remarkable considering its pilots (FC) only fly narrow body 737s. The worst is JetBlue (JBL) ($123,000). Flt.Ops.com notes that pilots (FC) can earn considerably more than their base pay through international overrides, overtime work, per diems and other items.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) is offering voluntary furloughs to 400 flight attendants (CA). VP Inflight Services, Hector Adler said in a message to employees that (AMW)/(USA) has "waited as long as we could to address our overstaffing situation hoping that attrition and other voluntary leave options would offset the need for today's action," according to the "Associated Press." (AMW)/(USA) is asking 300 cabin staff (CA) based in Phoenix or Las Vegas to take voluntary leave from August 5 to November 30, 2009, or November 30, 2010, according to the Association of Flight Attendants Council 66, while 100 employees based at Boston, Charlotte, Washington National, New York LaGuardia or Philadelphia will be asked to take leave from September 5 through December 1.
A321-211 (3928, N197UW) and A330-243 (1011, N279AY), deliveries.
July 2009: The US Airways Group said June consolidated passenger (RASM) declined approximately -20% year-over-year, with total (RASM) falling around -18%. Group airlines flew 5.63 billion (RPM)s traffic, down -4%, against a -6% fall in capacity (ASK)s to 6.53 billion. Load factor rose +1.8 points to 86.2% LF.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker told "Reuters" that (AMW)/(USA) has "no plans to reduce capacity any further" in 2009, adding, "If anything, we will have a modest expansion internationally."
A $192 million fuel hedging gain pushed (AMW)/(USA) to a second-quarter net profit of +$58 million, reversed from a -$568 million loss in the year-ago period, when goodwill impairment charges weighed on the bottom line. "It's a difficult economic environment, but (AMW)/(USA) is performing very well in that environment," Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker said. He credited "very aggressive" cost control and $100 million in revenue generated from "a la carte" fees during the quarter. He noted that the carrier expects $400 million in ancillary revenue for the year and will continue to pursue new opportunities to generate added revenue.
Along those lines, (AMW)/USA) announced a contract with Aircell to provide in-flight WiFi service beginning early next year. Aircell's "Gogo" product initially will be installed on A321s operating select domestic routes.
Second-quarter revenue fell -18.4% to $2.66 billion, while expenses dropped -33.2% to $2.54 billion, producing operating income of +$122 million, reversed from an operating loss of -$536 million in the year-ago period. Traffic declined -4.1% to 15.53 billion (RPM)s on a -5.6% dip in capacity to 18.31 billion (ASM)s, producing a load factor of 84.8% LF, up +1.3 points. Yield dropped -18.8% to 11.11 cents as (PRASM) lowered -17.6% to 9.42 cents and (CASM) decreased -31.9% to 10.44 cents. (CASM) excluding special items, fuel hedging and fuel dipped -2.1% to 8.14 cents.
Looking ahead, Parker said the second-half revenue environment "continues to be difficult to forecast." He added, "We have seen an encouraging though modest improvement in revenues over the past several weeks, but we are not counting on a quick recovery."
(AMW)/(USA) launched new, daily nonstop flying to Tel Aviv from Philadelphia International Airport, using A330s. (AMW)/(USA) will fly to Barbados four days a week starting October 1, and then offer daily service for the winter season beginning December 19. With this new service, (AMW)/(USA) will offer customers an average of 109 weekly nonstop flights to 14 Caribbean destinations from Philadelphia International Airport during the peak Caribbean travel season.
Swift Air (SWF) and Globe Air Cargo were selected by US Airways (AMW)/(USA) to serve as General Service Agents (GSA)s in Belgium and the Netherlands, respectively.
A321-231s (3960, N523UW; 3977, N524UW), deliveries.
August 2009: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) said July consolidated passenger (RASM) fell approximately -15% year-over-year, while total unit revenue was down around -12%. It flew 5.86 billion consolidated (RPM)s traffic, down -4.1%, against a -5.6% cut in capacity to 6.83 billion (ASM)s. Load factor rose +1.3 points to 85.9% LF.
All Nippon Airways (ANA) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) announced a code share agreement effective September 16 under which (AMW)/(USA) will place its code on (ANA) flights from Tokyo Narita to Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago O'Hare, Washington Dulles, and New York (JFK), while (ANA) will place its code on (AMW)/(USA) flights from the aforementioned American airports to Charlotte, Philadelphia, Phoenix, and Las Vegas.
Delta Air Lines (DAL) and (AMW)/(USA) announced a massive slot swapping deal that, if approved by regulators, will greatly enhance (AMW)/(USA)'s presence at Washington National (DCA) and enable (DAL) to "create a domestic hub" at New York LaGuardia (LGA). Under terms of the agreement, (AMW)/(USA) will obtain 42 slot pairs at (DCA) from (DAL), which also will transfer route rights to serve Japan and Brazil, while (AMW)/(USA) will transfer to (DAL) 125 pairs of slots at (LGA) used to provide US Airways Express service via Piedmont Airlines, discontinuing those operations. (DAL) additionally will take over (AMW)/(USA) gates and terminal space at (LGA). "The transaction is structured as two simultaneous asset sales and is expected to be cash neutral," (AMW)/(USA) said in a statement, adding that it believes the deal "will improve profitability by more than >$75 million annually."
AirTran Airways (CQT) announced that it will increase its presence at both (LGA) and (DCA), and the "Associated Press" reported that (CQT) is getting 10 (DCA)/(LGA) slots from Continental Airlines (CAL) in exchange for its 10 slots at Newark.
(AMW)/(USA) said it will maintain its current level of mainline flying at (LGA), including its East Coast Shuttle service between Boston, (LGA) and (DCA), and will continue to be the third-largest airline there, with up to 72 peak day flights. However, it will shift its Shuttle operation to the airport's Marine Air Terminal, which is currently home to the rival Delta Shuttle, which will move into space vacated by (AMW)/(USA).
Other (AMW)/(USA) (LGA) services will move to Terminal D or the East Terminal. In a message to employees, (AMW)/(USA) President, Scott Kirby said that "although a split operation is not optimal, with the flight schedule we will operate we know we can make this work." (AMW)/(USA) will increase the destinations it serves to/from (DCA) from seven to 15. It also will "increase the number of seats we fly at (DCA) by using larger, dual-class jets," Senior VP Marketing & Planning, Andrew Nocella said. New destinations served from (DCA) will include Birmingham, Islip, Ithaca, Little Rock, Myrtle Beach, Pensacola, Savannah, and Tallahassee.
(DAL) said it will more than double the number of destinations it serves from (LGA), including 12 cities not currently served by (AMW)/(USA). It said it will operate "larger jets" from the slots it is taking over from (AMW)/(USA) instead of the turboprops (AMW)/(USA)/Piedmont operate currently.
It plans to invest $40 million in a construction project at (LGA) "to connect the current (DAL) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) main terminals, rebrand (AMW)/(USA) existing main terminal gates, ticket counters and lounges . . . and create a new dedicated check-in area" for premium and (DAL) Shuttle passengers. The project, subject to approval of the slot-swap deal, is expected to be completed next year.
(DAL) said it will give (AMW)/(USA) "a limited number of international route authorities" that will be used for flights to Tokyo Narita and Sao Paulo, neither of which (AMW)/(USA) serves today. (AMW)/(USA) expects to begin Sao Paulo service in the second half of 2010 from Charlotte. (AMW)/(USA) said it does not anticipate starting Tokyo service "until 2012 or later" and would operate the route from Phoenix, subject to government approval and "economic conditions."
The (DAL)/(AMW)/(USA) agreement will be reviewed by the USA Departments of Justice and Transportation. In the employee message, Kirby said that "regulatory approval is expected to take several months" and the first components of the deal won't be "implemented before early 2010, with many aspects taking up to a year from now to implement." In explaining the rationale for the deal, he said that with its current scale of operations, (AMW/(USA) "captures only about 4% of all revenue generated among airports in New York" while (DAL) has "about a 16% share . . . Based on (DAL)'s larger presence in (NY), they will be able to use [the assets] better than we ever could."
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) and Continental Airlines (CAL) announced they will follow American Airlines (AAL)'s recent decision to start charging $50 for a second piece of checked baggage on transatlantic flights. As with (AAL), first checked bags will remain free. (AMW)/(USA) also will raise the domestic charge for a first checked bag to $20 from $15 and for a second piece to $30 from $25, matching increases imposed by (AAL) last month. (AMW)/(USA) will tack an additional $5 onto bags checked at the airport rather than on its website. Those changes enter effect on October 7. (CAL)'s new transatlantic policy takes effect for tickets purchased from now for travel on or after September 15. Neither carrier's new fees apply to premium loyalty program members, first (F) and business (C) class passengers or active military.
737-3G7 (25400, N322AW), WFU.
September 2009: The US Airways Group said August mainline and regional passenger (RASM) fell approximately -15% year-over-year and total (RASM) dropped -13%. Group airlines flew 5.69 billion consolidated (RPM)s traffic, down -3.9%, against a -3.9% cut in capacity to 6.69 billion (ASM)s. Load factor fell -0.1 point to 85% LF.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) announced that Captain Chesley “Sully”
Sullenberger, who piloted the (AMW)/(USA) A320 during its emergency water landing on the Hudson River last January, is returning to work in a new role as a management pilot (FC). In addition to his flying duties, Captain Sullenberger will join the (AMW)/(USA) Flight Operations Safety Management team.
United Airlines (UAL), Delta Air Lines (DAL) and (AMW)/(USA) followed American Airlines (AAL)'s lead in imposing a $10 surcharge on travel on three peak days following upcoming holidays. The four carriers will tack the charge on to nearly all tickets for travel on November 29, the Sunday of the four-day USA Thanksgiving holiday weekend that traditionally is one of the country's busiest travel days, as well as the weekend of January 2 to 3, which follows a Friday New Year's Day.
(AMW)/(USA) said it will begin installing its new "Envoy Suite" business class (C) product on its A330-200s in November. The suite includes a lie-flat bad, direct aisle access, 12.1-inch touchscreen from Panasonic Avionics Corporation, power outlet, satellite telephone and USB port. The 20-suite cabin will feature a 1-2-1 "reverse herringbone" configuration. The first airplane will be completed in December, with the remaining 14 finished by summer 2011. The design for the A330-300 cabin is "under development," (AMW)/(USA) said, with installation expected by summer 2012.
737-3G7 (25400, N322AW), returned to (GEF). A321-231 (4041, N537UW) and A330-243 (1043, N281AY), deliveries.
October 2009: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) reported a -$80 million loss in the third quarter, narrowed considerably from the year-ago period's -$866 million deficit that resulted from heavy fuel hedge losses and other special charges. Excluding special items, (AMW)/(USA) was -$110 million in the red, compared to -$243 million on a similar basis last year.
Operating revenue dropped -16.6% year-over-year to $2.72 billion against a -31.3% plunge in expenses to $2.71 billion. Operating result reversed to a +$6 million profit from a -$689 million loss in the 2008 third quarter, but a realized fuel hedge loss of -$50 million plus another $30 million in special items related largely to reductions in capacity and employment levels proved the difference.
"Our third-quarter financial results reflect the soft but improving economic environment," Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker said, adding that (AMW)/(USA) is "in an excellent position to capitalize on the recovering economy." (AMW)/(USA) said it's a la carte and ancillary revenue initiatives produced some $110 million during the quarter and now are expected to generate in excess of +$500 million per year. It also raised +$137 million through a public stock offering.
The mainline fleet decreased by 10 airplanes year-over-year to 348 planes at the close of the quarter. Traffic dropped -3.4% to 15.72 billion (RPM)s while capacity was down -3.5% to 18.72 billion (ASM)s, producing a +0.1 point lift in load factor to 84% LF. Yield plunged -17.2% to 11.18 cents and passenger (RASM) slipped nearly as much, -17.1% to 9.39 cents. Operating (CASM) improved +31.3% to 11 cents but just +0.3% to 8.06 cents, when adjusted for special items, fuel and hedges.
Nine-month net loss of -$125 million compared to a -$1.67 billion shortfall in the year-ago period. (AMW)/(USA) earned an operating profit of +$103 million through September, reversed from a -$1.42 billion loss last year.
(AMW)/(USA) announced that it will cut -1,000 jobs in the first half of 2010 and implement a "realignment" of its flight network to focus on its "core network strengths," resulting in nearly all of its capacity operating to/from three hubs, one focus city and on its Northeast USA shuttle service by the end of next year. (AMW)/(USA) said the job cuts will include -600 airport passenger and ramp service workers, -200 pilots (FC) and 150 flight attendants (CA). (AMW)/(USA) will close crew bases at Las Vegas (LAS) and New York LaGuardia on January 31 and at Boston on May 2.
The realigned network will ramp up from 93% to 99% the amount of flying that goes through the Charlotte, Philadelphia (PHL) and Phoenix hubs, focus airport Washington National and the Boston (BOS) - LaGuardia (LGA) - (DCA) shuttle service. As a result, daily (LAS) departures will lower from 64 to 36 by February 2010, all service will be suspended at Wichita and Colorado Springs and 15 EMB-190s will be redeployed to (BOS) - (PHL) and (BOS) - (LGA) Shuttle flying.
In addition, (PHL) service to five European destinations - - Birmingham, London Gatwick, Milan Malpensa, Shannon and Stockholm Arlanda - - will be eliminated and seasonal (PHL) service to Brussels and Zurich will transition to year-round in late 2010. (AMW)/(USA) also will return its (PHL) - Beijing flight authority to the USA Department of Transportation. It will retain the option to reapply for the authority.
In a letter to employees, Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker wrote, "By focusing on our strengths and eliminating unprofitable flying we will increase the likelihood of returning (AMW)/(USA) to long-term profitability, which is in all of our best interests."
The USA (FAA) proposed $9.2 million in civil penalties against US Airways (AMW)/(USA) and United Airlines (UAL) for violations related to federal airworthiness directives (AD)s and/or the airlines' own federally approved maintenance programs. The actions came as the (FAA) appears to be taking a tougher line with carriers regarding violations of regulations and (AD)s. It announced last month measures to improve its response to safety issues, emphasizing that it no longer would refer to airlines as its "customers."
(AMW)/(USA) faces a $5.4 million civil penalty for allegedly operating eight airplanes on 1,647 flights "while not in compliance with certain (AD)s" or its own maintenance program, the agency said. It cited seven instances in which (AMW)/(USA) failed to perform required inspections or maintenance on airplanes it continued to operate. In one instance, the (FAA) claimed an A320 that did not meet the airline's maintenance program requirements for an engine repair continued to be used for 51 flights after the agency brought the problem to the carrier's attention. In another, (AMW)/(USA) operated an EMB-190 on 19 flights "while the airplane was not in compliance with an (AD) that required inspections to prevent a cargo door from opening in flight."
(USA) said in a statement that the proposed penalty covers events "dat[ing] back to challenges we experienced during the integration of maintenance systems and processes [related to its merger with America West Airlines (AMW)] on flights that occurred in 2008 and January 2009. Our team worked cooperatively with the (FAA) to investigate and correct any discrepancies to the (FAA)'s satisfaction." It said it would "continue to work with the (FAA) in a cooperative manner to promptly achieve a negotiated resolution of the (FAA)'s civil penalty proposal." The two airlines have 30 days to respond to the (FAA).
Republic Airways Holdings plans to acquire 10 Embraer EMB-190AR airplanes from US Airways (AMW)/(USA). The regional airline operator, which previously supplied a $35 million loan to (AMW)/(USA), in a statement says it will apply the balance of the loan to the purchase of the airplanes and will assume the remaining debt on the airplanes. Four of the 99-seat jets are expected to enter service on behalf of Republic's Milwaukee, Wisconsin-based subsidiary, Midwest Airlines (MWX) between November and December, with the remaining airplanes placed into service for branded operations during the first half of 2010. The first four deliveries will replace (MWX)'s outgoing 717s, the last of which will fly on 3 November.
Republic subsidiary Republic Airlines currently operates five EMB-190s, with two of the airplanes sourced from lessor (GECAS) (GEF.
Last year, (AMW)/(USA) secured a loan from Republic as part of a $950 million financing and liquidity package (AMW)/(USA) developed to prepay a $1.6 billion bank facility. At that time, (AMW)/(USA) accepted $10 million from Republic and then drew the full $35 million loan from Republic in May 2009.
757-225 (22202, N922UW), returned to (GEF) and scrapped. 3 A321-231s (4025, N536UW; 4050, N538UW; 4082, N539UW), deliveries.
November 2009: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) said October consolidated passenger (RASM) fell some -10% year-over-year and "the revenue outlook continues to show material signs of improvement with continued strength in both close-in bookings and yields." It flew 4.86 billion consolidated (RPM)s traffic during the month, down -0.6%, against a -1.7% cut in capacity to 5.92 billion (ASM)s. Load factor rose +1 point to 82.2% LF.
(AMW)/(USA) will resume thrice-daily, Melbourne, Florida - Charlotte service on February 11 after a 12-year hiatus. Flights will be aboard PSA Airlines CRJ-700s.
(AMW)/(USA) received Department of Transportation approval for its code share agreement with Grupo TACA (TAC). Beginning January 12, (AMW)/(USA) passengers will be able to connect on TACA (TAC) flights from San Salvador, San Jose (Costa Rica), and Lima to domestic airports, as well as to destinations in Guatemala, Belize, Honduras, and Nicaragua. (TAC) passengers will gain access to (AMW)/(USA)'s network through Charlotte.
(AMW)/(USA) announced that it is deferring 54 of the 72 airplanes it was scheduled to receive from Airbus (EDS) in 2010 to 2012, comprising 46 A320s and eight A330s, and will push back the launch of its A350 service from 2015 to 2017. The deferrals will lower (AMW)/(USA)'s airplane capital expenditures by around $2.5 billion over the next three years. Executive VP & CFO, Derek Kerr said (AMW)/(USA) will take delivery of two A320s and two A330s in 2010 and an additional 24 A320 family airplanes in 2011 and 2012. "We have financing commitments for all 28 airplanes and believe this is a more manageable delivery rate given the current economic environment," he said. The deferred airplanes will begin delivering in 2013.
(AMW)/(USA) also announced it has reached an agreement with Barclays "to permanently lower the monthly unrestricted cash condition precedent for the advance purchase of frequent flyer miles and defer for 14 months the amortization of $200 million advanced in connection with the previous purchase of miles." Cumulatively, the moves will improve its year-end 2009 liquidity by approximately +$150 million and "generate +$450 million of projected liquidity improvements by the end of 2010," it said.
Citing its massive New York LaGuardia/Washington National slot swap with Delta Air Lines (DAL) announced in August and the "realignment" of its flight network announced last month, Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker said, "This is our third major strategic move in the past 100 days . . . These moves are part of our continuing efforts to improve our balance sheet and return the company to profitability . . . with these strategic initiatives behind us, we believe (AMW)/(USA) is well positioned to take full advantage of the recovering economy."
A320-214 (4086, N125UW), and A330-243 (1069, N282AY), deliveries.
December 2009: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) said consolidated November (RASM) was flat year-over-year, while mainline unit revenue fell approximately -2%. It flew 4.35 billion consolidated (RPM)s traffic, down -1.6%, against a -1.4% cut in capacity to 5.65 billion (ASM)s. Load factor slipped -0.1 point to 76.9% LF.
(AMW)/(USA) will launch daily, Charlotte - Rome Fiumicino service on May 13 aboard an A330-300. Next summer, (AMW)/(USA) will begin seasonal 757-200 non-stops to Anchorage from Philadelphia, representing the only direct link from America's northeast to Alaska. (AMW)/(USA) already flies to Alaska from its Phoenix hub.
(AMW)/(USA) pilots (FC) have petitioned the USA Department of Justice (DOJ) to conduct a full antitrust investigation of (AMW)/(USA)'s massive Washington National (DCA)/New York LaGuardia (LGA) slot swap with Delta Air Lines (DAL), a transaction that reportedly will lead to job losses or transfers for 261 (LGA)-based (AMW)/(USA) pilots (FC). (AMW)/(USA) and (DAL) announced in August that they will enter into a slot swap that, if approved by regulators, would greatly enhance (AMW)/(USA)'s presence at (DCA) while lowering its presence at (LGA), where (DAL) plans to establish a "domestic hub." (AMW)/(USA) also has said it will cut -1,000 jobs in the first half of 2010, implement a "realignment" of its flight network to focus on its "core network strengths" and defer 46 A320s and eight A330s that were scheduled for delivery in 2010 to 2012.
"Crain's New York Business" reported that (AMW)/(USA) filed notice with New York's Department of Labor stating that it will eliminate -261 (LGA)-based pilots (FC) beginning late next month. It is unclear how many of those jobs will be part of the -1,000-worker reduction and how many will be transferred to other locations. (AMW)/(USA) pilots (FC) represented by the USA Airline Pilots Association told the (DOJ) in a letter that the slot swap deal will place "a great burden on many of (AMW)/(USA)' New York-based employees whose jobs will be eliminated and will cause financial harm to the New York City and tri-state economy." It added that the deal would create "market concentration" that will result in "much higher fares and . . . a reduction in service to smaller communities." It said the (DOJ) must weigh the "consequences" of the transaction. (DAL) pilots (FC), in contrast, have signaled their support for the slot swap.
The USA Air Transport Association (ATA) announced that 15 airlines have signed Memos of Understanding (MOU)s with either AltAir Fuels, Rentech or both expressing nonbinding commitment to support future biofuel supply. Air Canada (ACN), American Airlines (AAL), Atlas Air (TLS), Delta Air Lines (DAL)/(NWA), FedEx Express (FED), JetBlue Airways (JBL), Lufthansa (DLH), Mexicana (CMA), Polar Air Cargo (PAO), United Airlines (UAL), (UPS) Airlines, and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) signed with both providers. Alaska Airlines (ASA) and Hawaiian Airlines (HWI) went with AltAir only and AirTran Airways (CQT) signed with Rentech. The (ATA) said discussions with additional fuel producers "about other projects" have started. "This agreement is a significant step forward, establishing a framework for a large group of diverse carriers to negotiate a definitive fuel purchase agreement," Rentech President & CEO, D Hunt Ramsbottom said.
AltAir is working on producing some 75 million gallons of jet and diesel fuel derived from camelina oils or comparable feedstock per year at a new plant in Anacortes, Washington, USA. Rentech plans to produce around 250 million gallons per year of synthetic jet fuel derived principally from coal or petroleum coke near Natchez, Mississipi, USA with the resultant carbon dioxide sequestered and the carbon footprint potentially further reduced by integrating biomass as a feedstock. Last summer, eight airlines operating at Los Angeles International (LAX) signed a deal with Rentech for the supply of a renewable synthetic diesel fuel for use in ground service equipment (GSE).
ST Aerospace renewed a three-year deal with (AMW)/(USA) covering heavy maintenance on (AMW)/(USA)'s 737, 757 and 767 airplanes. It also announced a three-year, $90 million deal with a "major USA airline" covering "C" checks and heavy Maintenance Repair & Overhaul (MRO) on A320 family and 767 airplanes. The contract includes a two-year option.
Guggenheim Aviation Partners (GUG) announced the delivery of a third A330-200 to (AMW)/(USA).
AA320-214 (4149, N126UW) and A321-231 (4134, N542UW), deliveries.
January 2010: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) said December consolidated unit revenue fell approximately -2% year-over-year, while total (RASM) was down -1%. President, Scott Kirby said (AMW)/(USA) was "pleased our revenue performance continued to show improvement with positive trends in both booked yields and corporate revenue." The company flew 4.65 billion consolidated (RPM)s traffic in December, a -3.6% fall from the year-ago month, against a -2.5% cut in capacity to 5.9 billion (ASM)s. Load factor dropped -0.9 point to 78.7% LF. In a Securities & Exchange filing, (AMW)/(USA) said fourth-quarter mainline (CASM) excluding fuel, special items and profit-sharing is expected to rise +1% to +3% year-over-year, while Express (CASM) excluding fuel should increase +4% to +6%. It also said it expected to take a noncash charge of around $49 million in relation to the November sale of 10 EMB-190s to Republic Airways Holdings (FRO)/(MWX). (AMW)/(USA) will lease back eight of the airplanes for 1 to 7 months each, it said, adding that it "continues to evaluate other options" for its remaining 15 EMB-190s. At year end, it operated 349 mainline and 283 Express airplanes and is projecting a fleet of 340 mainline and 281 Express airplanes at the close of 2010.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) said December consolidated unit revenue fell approximately -2% year-over-year, while total (RASM) was down -1%. President, Scott Kirby said (AMW)/(USA) was "pleased our revenue performance continued to show improvement with positive trends in both booked yields and corporate revenue." The company flew 4.65 billion consolidated (RPM)s traffic in December, a -3.6% fall from the year-ago month, against a -2.5% cut in capacity to 5.9 billion (ASM)s. Load factor dropped -0.9 point to 78.7% LF. In a Securities & Exchange filing, (AMW)/(USA) said fourth-quarter mainline (CASM) excluding fuel, special items and profit-sharing is expected to rise +1% to +3% year-over-year, while Express (CASM) excluding fuel should increase +4% to +6%. It also said it expected to take a noncash charge of around $49 million in relation to the November sale of 10 EMB-190s to Republic Airways Holdings (FRO)/(MWX). (AMW)/(USA) will lease back eight of the airplanes for 1 to 7 months each, it said, adding that it "continues to evaluate other options" for its remaining 15 EMB-190s. At year end, it operated 349 mainline and 283 Express airplanes and is projecting a fleet of 340 mainline and 281 Express airplanes at the close of 2010.
A year in which US Airways (AMW)/(USA) unveiled ambitious plans to reconfigure its airline operation ended with a -$205 million net loss that was a significant improvement from the -$2.22 billion deficit reported in 2008. A series of special items, including a $375 million unrealized gain on its fuel hedges, contributed to the result. Excluding those items, the group suffered a full-year loss of -$499 million compared to a 2008 loss of -$808 million calculated on a similar basis.
Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker said the results "reflect the extremely difficult environment" in 2009 and the company is "particularly pleased" with the improvement. "The actions we have put in place to address the challenges of the past two years - - capacity cuts, a la carte revenues, cost control and a commitment to efficient operating reliability - - are working. We enter 2010 with encouraging momentum and well-positioned to take advantage of the improving economic environment," he said. (AMW)/(USA) collected approximately $425 million in a la carte revenue last year and expects an increase of some +24% in 2010.
Three months ago, the company announced elimination of -1,000 jobs in the first half of 2010 and a realignment of its network that will focus almost entirely on its Phoenix, Charlotte, and Philadelphia hubs and Washington National base. Crew bases at Las Vegas and New York LaGuardia will close this month and in early May, respectively, and several long-haul flights will be cut. In late November, it announced the deferral of 54 of the 72 airplanes it was scheduled to receive from Airbus (EDS) in 2010 to 2012. Executive VP & CFO, Derek Kerr said (AMW)/(USA) will return five 757s, five 737s and four EMB-190s this year and end 2010 with 339 mainline airplanes.
Full-year operating revenue fell -13.7% to $10.46 billion, while costs were slashed -25.7% to $10.34 billion. Operating result reversed to a +$118 million profit from a -$1.8 billion loss in 2008. (AMW)/(USA) operated 632 airplanes at year end (349 mainline), down from 650 at the close of 2008.
The group flew a combined 68.46 billion (RPM)s traffic last year, down -4.2%, against a -4.5% cut in capacity to 85.09 billion (ASM)s. Load factor inched up +0.3 point to 80.5% LF. Yield was down -12.7% to 13.52 cents and passenger (RASM) fell -12.4% to 10.88 cents. Operating (CASM) was cut -22.2% to 12.15 cents. It expects capacity to rise slightly this year, with a -1% domestic mainline decrease and a -9% rise in international (ASM)s.
In the fourth quarter, (AMW)/(USA) reported a -$79 million loss, reduced -85.3% year-over-year from a -$543 million deficit. Operating result swung to a +$14 million profit from a -$378 million loss on a -4.9% slip in revenue to $2.63 billion.
The Mesa Air Group (MAG) filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in a USA court in New York, saying the process is needed for it to become a "leaner" entity able to compete in the future.
Phoenix-based, (MAG) said in a statement that it "will continue to operate as normal, without interruption" during the restructuring. "After careful consideration, the company determined that a Chapter 11 filing provides the most effective and efficient means to restructure with minimal impact on the business and our customers," Chairman & CEO, Jonathan Ornstein said. "This process will allow us to eliminate excess airplanes to better match our needs and give us the flexibility to align our business to the changing regional airline marketplace." He added that despite efforts over the last two years to trim costs and debt, (MAG) is "nonetheless faced with an untenable financial situation resulting primarily from our continued lease obligations on airplane excess to our current requirements . . . Our company has ample liquidity to support itself during this process and we are confident we will emerge from Chapter 11 an even stronger operation." It announced neither job cuts nor a time-line for emerging from bankruptcy.
The troubled regional operator said in court filings that 52 of its 130 airplanes are parked and that it needs to retire an additional 25, according to "Reuters." (MAG) operates independently as Mesa Airlines but the bulk of its operations involve code sharing flights with major partners Delta Air Lines (dal), US Airways (AMW)/(USA) and United Airlines (UAL).
In November, (UAL) significantly scaled back (MAG)'s flying on its behalf, terminating an agreement for operation of 26 50-seat CRJs, with the airplanes to be phased out by April 30. (DAL) has filed suit to cancel its agreement with (MAG), which said bankruptcy will allow it to bring its legal dispute with (DAL) to a "more timely conclusion." (MAG) said it is seeking $70 million in damages from (DAL).
Mesa's Hawaiian inter-island subsidiary, "go!," which operates as part of a joint venture with Republic Airways Holdings' Mokulele Airlines, is not included in the bankruptcy filing.
(MAG) said in court filings that its assets were $975 million and its liabilities stood at $869 million as of September 30, 2009. Bombardier is its largest creditor, with (MAG) owing the manufacturer more than >$130 million. Bombardier said it will work with (MAG) as the bankruptcy process moves forward. (MAG) has 10 CRJ-700s on order for delivery starting in 2013; it is unclear whether it will attempt to shed these commitments in Chapter 11.
PASSUR Aerospace announced that US Airways (AMW)/(USA) contracted for its "RightETA" arrival management system.
757-225s (22201; 22203; 22204), scrapped.
February 2010: The US Airways Group consolidated January passenger (RASM) rose approximately +2% year-over-year while total (RASM) was up some +3%, the company said. It flew 4.44 billion consolidated (RPM)s traffic during the month, down -1.3%, against a -0.6% cut in capacity to 5.96 billion (ASM)s. Load factor slipped -0.6 point to 74.4 LF.
Airports in the USA Mid-Atlantic and Northeast reopened as the regions began to dig out from back-to-back storms that produced record snow accumulation in some areas. Seven consecutive days of snow removal were required at Washington Dulles and National, the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority said. Baltimore, Philadelphia and the three major New York area airports also were operational, although airlines continued to cancel flights as they sought to reposition airplanes and employees and return to normal operation.
According to FlightStats, American Airlines (AAL)had canceled 465 of the 1,419 scheduled departures tracked, or 32.8%. The number of departures tracked represented 72.4% of the total. Continental Airlines (CAL) canceled 13.2% of its 675 tracked departures, representing 69.9% of the total schedule. Delta Air Lines (DAL) canceled 10.4% of its 1,658 tracked departures, representing 69.6% of its total. United Airlines (UAL) canceled 13.8% of its 741 tracked departures, representing 64.5% of its total. US Airways (AMW)/(USA) canceled 24.2% of its 921 tracked departures, representing 68.7% of its total. Southwest Airlines (SWA) canceled 22.4% of its 2,012 tracked departures, representing 62.9% of its total, FlightStats reported.
757-225 (22196, N918UW), scrapped. A320-214 (4202, N127UW), delivery.
March 2010: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) said last month's winter weather in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast USA cost the company around $30 million in lost revenue. Passenger (RASM) was up approximately +0.5 point as a result of the resulting capacity reduction. Group airlines flew 3.99 billion (RPM)s traffic in February, down -4.8% year-over-year, against a -5.8% fall in capacity to 5.17 billion (ASM)s. Load factor rose +0.7 point to 77.2% LF.
USA airlines presenting at the Transportation Conference in New York agreed that they see signs of a nascent industry recovery but that they will maintain cost and capacity discipline for now. "We're clearly seeing signs of economic recovery and premium and corporate travelers returning," (UAL) Corporation's CFO, Kathryn Mikells said, adding, "The return of higher quality traffic, combined with the significant reductions in capacity that we undertook in 2009, has really begun to improve our relative revenue results." American Airlines (AAL) Executive VP Finance & Planning and CFO, Tom Horton said first-quarter mainline passenger (RASM) will be up +6.5% to +7.5% year-over-year, while Continental Airlines (CAL) Chairman, President & CEO, Jeff Smisek said (CAL) is "seeing business (C) travel begin to return." Delta Air Lines (DAL) agreed that corporate sales trends are improving, though its system capacity at the end of the first quarter will be down -4% to -5% year-over-year. (DAL) President, Ed Bastian said (DAL) will "continue to maintain that level of capacity restraint."
From the low-cost sector, Southwest Airlines (SWA) said it is taking a slow approach to expanding in new markets, remaining focused on improving profitability rather than increasing fleet size. CFO, Laura Wright said (SWA) wants additional slots at New York LaGuardia and that it will be filing comments in the next few weeks to express interest. "We don't have an expectation to have 100 flights a day at LaGuardia, but we know we've got demand for more than the eight that we have today," she said. Slots might become available if US Airways (AMW)/(USA) and (DAL) proceed with their slot swap agreement. AirTran Airways (CQT) said it expects capacity growth of +3% to +4% over the next year owing to higher utilization and will maintain a conservative fleet plan for the "next couple of years." It expects to take delivery of seven airplanes over the next year. JetBlue Airways (JBL) has decided to take four A320s in 2011 rather than the eight previously planned, along with five EMB-190s, according to the "Associated Press."
(AMW)/(USA) announced the retirement of Captain Chesley Sullenberger, 59, who famously piloted an A320-200 to an emergency water landing on the Hudson River in January 2009. Sullenberger became a member of (AMW)/(USA)'s Flight Operations Safety Management team in September. Doreen Welsh, 59, a flight attendant (CA) who worked the flight, also retired.
Delta Air Lines (DAL) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) have softened their stance and will give up 12% of the slots originally included in their New York LaGuardia (LGA)/Washington National (DCA) swap deal in order to secure approval from the USA Department of Transportation (DOT). The (DOT)'s tentative approval of the arrangement was contingent on the sale of 20 of the 125 (LGA) pairs and 14 of the 42 (DCA) pairs. Six weeks ago, (DAL) (receiving the (LGA) slots) and (AMW)/(USA) (receiving the (DCA) slots) said parting with the slots likely would scuttle the deal because disposal "would negatively impact the consumer and economic benefits created" by the transaction.
Later the airlines announced a change of heart. They said that (DAL) has agreed to transfer up to five pairs of (LGA) slots each to AirTran Airways (CQT), Spirit Airlines (SPR) and WestJet (WJI), while (AMW)/(USA) will transfer five (DCA) slot pairs to JetBlue Airways (JBL).
Under the new arrangement, (DAL) would gain a net 110 slot pairs at (LGA) and (AMW)/(USA) a net 37 at (DCA). (AMW)/(USA) also would gain access to Tokyo Narita and Sao Paulo Guarulhos, it was revealed. JetBlue (JBL) currently serves Washington Dulles but not (DCA), while WestJet (WJI) would be new at (LGA).
"In New York, (DAL) will add or preserve service to dozens of small- and medium-sized communities, while adding service in a number of markets not currently served by (AMW)/(USA). (DAL) would also begin a multimillion-dollar construction program at (LGA) to connect the existing (DAL) and (AMW)/(USA) terminals," the carriers said.
Of (AMW)/(USA)'s 15 new daily flights at (DCA), eight will be to destinations that currently have no non-stop service to/from the airport. "The airline also will significantly expand its use of larger dual-class jets by nearly +50%," they said.
The transfers are contingent on (FAA) approval and the closing of the original transaction, the parties said, adding that "they do not intend to go forward with the transaction on the conditions stated in the [February tentative approval] if the original transaction, as modified by today's agreement, is not approved."
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) asked the USA Department of Transportation (DOT) for an exemption to the impending tarmac delay rule because its Philadelphia (PHL) hub is affected by traffic congestion spilling over from New York. Continental Airlines (CAL) sought relief from the 3-hour cutoff because of Newark's proximity, joining American Airlines (AAL), Delta Air Lines (DAL) and JetBlue Airways (JBL) in seeking exemptions because of runway construction at New York (JFK). The rule is scheduled to enter effect on April 29. (AMW)/(USA) cited bad weather on March 13 that forced the diversion of 11 New York-area flights to (PHL), which resulted in delays. A (DOT) spokesperson told the "Associated Press" that it expects "to issue a decision shortly."
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) announced the launch of Aircell's Gogo in-flight Internet on five A321s and plans to offer the service on board all 51 A321s by June 1. A Wi-Fi symbol on the outside of the airplanes will alert passengers that Gogo is available, (AMW)/(USA) said, and beginning in late June passengers will be able to check service availability when booking travel on (AMW)/(USA)'s website. The airline will offer passengers who create a user profile one free in-flight session March 29 to June 1 and will offer the service free June 1 to 8. It then will be priced as follows: For flights in the continental USA up to 90 minutes, all passengers will pay $4.95; for flights of 90 minutes to 3 hours, computer uses will pay $9.95 and (PDA) users $7.95; for flights longer than 3 hours, computer users will pay $12.95 and (PDA) users $7.95. For destinations beyond the contiguous 48 states, computer users will pay $9.95 and (PDA) users will continue to pay $7.95. The service is not available beyond 100 miles from the USA mainland.
A320-214 (4242, N128UW), and 2 A330-223s (1095, N284AY; 1100, N285AY), deliveries.
April 2010: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) reported a first-quarter net loss of -$45 million, narrowed from a -$103 million deficit in the year-ago period, and touted a continuing "rate of improvement" that it said likely will result in a "profitable second quarter." Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker said (AMW)/(USA) is well-positioned going forward even though its recent talks with United Airlines (UAL) about a potential merger yielded no results. "All things being equal, we would prefer to participate in consolidation than not," he told analysts and reporters. "That said, it doesn't mean we need to participate."
He added that (AMW)/(USA) would benefit from other carriers combining. "Now it appears that our talks with United (UAL) have helped [push] (UAL) to [potentially] merge with Continental (CAL) [Airlines]," he said. "If that happens, we'll be down to four [USA legacy network airlines]. The industry would still be fragmented, but it would be much better than" when six USA legacy passenger carriers existed prior to the Delta Air Lines (DAL) - Northwest Airlines (NWA) merger.
Parker said (AMW)/(USA)'s financial performance "improvement would have been more pronounced except for extreme winter storms along the East Coast during the [first] quarter, which impacted US Airways (AMW)/(USA) more than many of our competitors." He described the current revenue environment as "dynamic and improving" and projected that "revenue momentum" will drive profitability in the current quarter.
First-quarter revenue lifted +7.9% to $2.65 billion, while expenses rose +7.3% to $2.66 billion, producing an operating loss of -$10 million, narrowed from a -$25 million operating deficit in the prior-year period. Mainline traffic dipped -1.9% to 13.05 billion (RPM)s on a -2.4% cut in capacity to 16.58 billion (ASM)s, producing a load factor of 78.7% LF, up +0.3 point. Yield increased +7.5% to 13.01 cents, as passenger (RASM) boosted +8% to 10.24 cents and (CASM) heightened +9.8% to 12.13 cents. (CASM) ex-fuel rose +2.9% to 8.88 cents.
Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker expressed strong reluctance to invest in cockpit technology that is seen as being vital to achieving the goals of the (FAA)'s "NextGen" air traffic management system, stating that the cost/benefit case has not been made. Parker said, "There is not a capacity issue in the United States right now as it relates to air traffic control (ATC), so putting in place NextGen (ATC), while it makes all the sense in the world, isn't going to save the airlines dramatic amounts . . . So our position is so long as we have to pay for [flight deck equipment], we prefer not to have it." (AMW)/(USA) estimated its investment would total $950 million.
Parker and Senior VP Government Affairs, C A Howlett also questioned the premise that future traffic growth will create a critical capacity shortfall necessitating NextGen. Howlett challenged what he called overly optimistic forecasts "that [traffic] growth is going to be in the 3% to 4% to 5% range [per annum] . . . Even some of the (FAA) numbers about future growth we think are quite rich. It's a mature industry domestically. The stimulation that occurs has largely been met. I would say that if we are looking at +1% to +2% [annual domestic] growth over the next decade that would be good."
(AMW)/(USA)'s mainline fleet will be reduced by -10 net airplanes to 339 by year end, representing the removal of -14 airplanes and the addition of four, according to Executive VP & CFO, Derek Kerr. Speaking at the carrier's media day in Phoenix, he said the airline will retire five of its 24 737-300s and five of 28 757-200s as well as four EMB-190s of 19, all of which are dedicated to the East Coast shuttles. It added two A320s and two A330-200s in the first quarter, the only airplanes it will take in 2010. It will add 12 A320s each in 2011 and 2012. Kerr said that (AMKW)/(USA) will be out of its 737 Classics within five years while it will retain around 23 757s dedicated to its transatlantic and Hawaiian networks. Last year, it deferred delivery of 54 Airbus (EDS) airplanes.
May 2010: The USA Department of Transportation (DOT) gave final approval to the Delta Air Lines (DAL)/(AMW)/US Airways (AMKW)/(USA) slot swap at Washington National (DCA) and New York LaGuardia (LGA) announced last August. But the (DOT) declined the carriers' request to modify its requirement that they divest 14 slot pairs at (DCA) and 20 at (LGA) as a condition of approving the deal. (AMW)/(USA) and (DAL) had made a counter proposal to transfer fewer slots to four Low Cost Carrier (LCC)s but the (DOT) determined that this "would be insufficient to preserve competition at the two airports."
Both carriers expressed disappointment with the decision. An (AMW)/(USA) spokesperson said that the carrier was reviewing the ruling, while a (DAL) spokesperson said that airline was "reviewing its options." Under the original agreement, (DAL) was to have transferred 42 slot pairs at (DCA) to (AMW)/(USA) in exchange for (DAL)’s obtaining 125 slot pairs at (LGA). (AMW)/(USA) also would receive (DAL) route authorities to Tokyo Narita and Sao Paulo Guarulhos. In February, the (DOT) tentatively approved the agreement on the condition that the carriers divest slots to airlines with little or no service at the airports through a blind sale in the following proportions: "Two slot-pair bundles at (DCA) with Bundle A containing 8 pairs and Bundle B containing 6 pairs; and four slot-pair bundles at (LGA), with Bundle A containing 8 pairs and Bundles B-D containing 4 pairs per bundle."
In response, the carriers proposed to transfer up to five pairs of (LGA) slots each to AirTran Airways (CQT), Spirit Airlines (SPR) and Canada’s WestJet (WJI), while (AMW)/(USA) would transfer five (DCA) slot pairs to JetBlue Airways (JBL).
In its final ruling, the (DOT) said it examined whether the presence of low-fare competition at nearby airports such as Baltimore, Washington Dulles and New York (JFK) could act as damper on higher fares at (DCA) and (LGA) but noted that average yields at those airports were considerably lower than at (DCA) and (LGA). It concluded "that if the airports were effective economic substitutes for all passengers, the yield spreads would not differ so significantly."
June 2010: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) flew 5.2 billion (RPM)s traffic in May, up +1.8% year-over-year, on a +1.7% lift in capacity to 6.27 billion (ASM)s. Load factor rose +0.1 point to 82.9% LF.
The US Airline (AMW)/(USA) Pilots Association (USAPA) won a legal victory that could help to clear the way to having the union and (AMW)/(USA) negotiate a new pilot (FC) contract enabling the integration of former US Airways (USA) and America West (AMW) pilot work groups into a single workforce. The (USAPA) is the authorized bargaining agent for the airline's 5,200 pilots (FC) but a legal dispute between former (AWA) pilots (FC) and the union has prevented (USAPA) from moving forward on integrating the seniority lists of the groups. The latest ruling by the Ninth USA Circuit Court of Appeals reversed the decision of a lower federal court that had found the (USAPA) liable in a Duty of Fair Representation lawsuit. "The decision allows the (USAPA) to freely bargain for the terms of its seniority integration," the (USAPA) said in a statement.
The legal tussle dates back to the merger of (AWA) and (USA). At the time, both pilot work groups were represented by the Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA) and integration of the two seniority lists was conducted under an (ALPA)-sanctioned arbitration process. However, the former (USA) pilots, the larger of the two work groups by a significant margin, disputed the arbitrator's decision and voted to decertify (ALPA) and create a new union, (USAPA). In 2008, six former (AWA) pilots went to court seeking to have the original arbitrator's decision imposed and challenging the ability of (USAPA) to fairly represent their interests. In the latest decision, the appeals court said it was too early in the bargaining process to know whether representation by (USAPA) had harmed their interests.
(USAPA) President, Mike Cleary stated, “We are extremely gratified by a resolution of this case, and we now look forward to our pilot (FC) group coming together to work towards an improved, industry-standard contract for all US Airways (AMW)/(USA) pilots.” The former (AWA) pilots are expected to appeal the decision to the full court, according to the "Associated Press."
July 2010: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) operated 5.79 billion system (RPM)s traffic in June, a +2.9% increase from the year-ago month. Capacity rose +2.7% to 6.7 billion (ASM)s and load factor gained +0.2 point to 86.4% LF. Domestic (RPM)s declined -0.8% to 4.18 billion against a +0.2% rise in capacity to 4.83 billion (ASM)s.
US Airways (AMW/(USA) reported second-quarter net income of +$279 million, a nearly fivefold increase over a +$58 million profit in the year-ago period, and joined the industry chorus in promising no capacity growth despite the strong financial performance. "This is a big deal for us. It feels very good," Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker told analysts and reporters. Nevertheless, he cautioned, "One profitable quarter does not necessarily mean a sustainable long-term business model."
Executive VP & CFO, Derek Kerr added that there is "no improvement, no worsening" in the economic environment in which the airline operates. "This feels to us like a tepid recovery, but certainly not one that double dips," he commented. "We still haven't reached the peak revenue environment of 2008." He noted that the revenue environment has "flat-lined" since April.
Parker reiterated that (AMW)/(USA) will remain conservative on capacity, with full-year (ASM)s projected to rise +1% year-over-year including a -1% to -2% cut in (AMW)/(USA) mainline domestic capacity. Asked if a strong second quarter will tempt carriers to ramp up capacity, Parker quickly responded, "I assure you it won't be us." Adding capacity in the USA market would "defy logic," he said.
Second quarter revenue lifted +19.3% to $3.17 billion, while expenses heightened +10.4% to $2.8 billion, producing operating income of +$371 million, more than triple the +$122 million operating profit in the year-ago period. Mainline traffic was flat at 15.53 billion (RPM)s, while capacity rose a slight +0.7% to 18.44 billion (ASM)s, producing a load factor of 84.2% LF, up +0.6 point. Yield increased +18.1% to 13.11 cents as (PRASM) grew +17.3% to 11.04 cents, and (CASM) lifted +10% to 11.48 cents. (CASM) ex-fuel increased +0.5% to 8.18 cents.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) and Turkish Airlines (THY) reached a code share agreement under which (AMW)/(USA) will place its code on Turkish flights to Istanbul Ataturk (IST) from Frankfurt (FRA), Munich (MUC), and Zurich (ZRH). Customers will gain access to Adana, Izmir, Antalya, and Ankara via (IST) and may opt for nonstop travel to (IST) via New York (JFK) and Chicago O'Hare (ORD). (THY) will place its code on USA flights to Charlotte, Philadelphia, and Phoenix from (FRA), (MUC), (ZRH), (ORD), and (JFK). The agreement is subject to USA Department of Transportation and Turkish government approval.
Six airlines formed a member-based, not-for-profit organization called Open (AXIS) Group to promote a standardized XML (eXtensible Markup Language) schema as the optimal electronic messaging structure for airline system connectivity used in content distribution. The members are Air Canada (ACN), American Airlines (AAL), Continental Airlines (CAL), Delta Air Lines (DAL), United Airlines (UAL), and US Airways (AMW)/(USA). (ATPCO) has been invited to serve as the founding Allied Member and former Frontier Airlines (FRO) VP, Jim Young will serve as Executive Director.
The Open (AXIS) Group’s mission is to expand the adoption, promotion, enhancement and maintenance of a robust airline industry-standardized XML schema that supports a range of airline transactions, including booking and (PNR) management, multiple passenger management, ticketing, exchange, refunds, voids, optional services, bundling and (EMD) management. "Having this standard provides a one-stop shop for modern airline connectivity," said American Airlines (AAL) Director Merchandising Strategy, Cory Garner.
Membership is not a requirement to use the group's messaging standard; the XML schema is available to all on the group's website. "We plan on being an open, transparent and inclusive group," Young said. "The Open (AXIS) Group is structured to respond quickly to the fast-paced needs of the airlines."
August 2010: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) 2009 Passenger Traffic = 93,146 Million (-4.4%) (RPK)s (World Highest #11) (#11), Total Employees = 31,333 (-4.2%) (World Highest #13). SEE ATTACHED - - "USA-2010-08-WLD RPK-2009."
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) will not expand its Hawaii operations beyond its Phoenix base, and has no plans to resume a Charlotte - Honolulu service. Calling Phoenix a “very efficient gateway to Honolulu and the other Hawaiian islands,” (AMW)/(USA)’s Senior VP Marketing & Planning, Andrew Nocella, in a staff newsletter, says the Charlotte flight “is gone for good,” and airplanes assigned to the route have been reassigned to Europe. He also notes there are no plans to offer nonstops to Honolulu from either Philadelphia or Los Angeles.
September 2010: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) operated 5.74 billion system traffic (RPM)s in August, a +0.8% increase from the year-ago month. Capacity rose +1.2% to 6.77 billion (ASM)s and load factor fell -0.3 points to 84.7% LF. US Airways (AMW)/(USA) mainline flew 5.53 billion (RPM)s, a +0.6% increase, as capacity grew +1.2% to 6.49 billion (ASM)s. Load factor dropped -0.5 points to 85.2% LF.
(AMW)/(USA) plans to launch seasonal service from Charlotte to Madrid and Dublin in May 2011. The Madrid service, which starts May 4 and ends October 29, will be operated with 767-200ERs. The Dublin service, which runs from May 6 to September 30, will be operated with 757-200 Extended Twin-engine Operations (ETOPS) airplanes.
(AMW)/(USA) has bolstered its operations by promoting VP Reservations & Customer Service Planning, Kerry Hester to Senior VP Operations & Support. Hester’s promotion, which gives her the responsibilities of VP Operations, Brad Beakley (who is leaving the airline), also allows for the promotion of Managing Director, Tim Lindemann to the now vacant role of VP Reservations & Customer Planning. Managing Director, Bob Maloney also was promoted to VP Operations Control Center & Air Traffic Control. Chief Operating Officer (COO), Robert Isom in a staff letter notes, “Over the past three years, US Airways (AMW)/(USA) has achieved a remarkable operational turnaround. As we return our airline to sustained profitability and position it for the opportunities ahead, it is critical that we continue to execute on a day-to-day level, and also build on this expertise by strengthening our operations planning and analysis capabilities. “I am pleased to announce today, three leadership promotions that will help accomplish that goal,” he adds. Hester, who joined (AMW)/(USA) in 2007 from Northwest Airlines (NWA), will also share management of crew resources with Senior VP Flight Operations & In-Flight, Ed Bular.
TIMCO Aviation Services (ALS) signed an agreement with US Airways (AMW)/(USA) to provide base maintenance services for its 767 fleet beginning later this year.
October 2010: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) posted third-quarter net income of +$240 million, reversed from an -$80 million net deficit in the year-ago period, saying the combination of "a modestly improving economy," capacity discipline and "moderate" fuel prices are creating an environment conducive to profitability.
Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker noted the net profit was the highest ever in a third quarter for (AMW)/(USA) including past performances by both America West Airlines (AMW) and the former US Airways (USA). He said achieving "record results" despite the economy only "slowly and begrudgingly pulling out of a recession" is "concrete evidence that fundamental restructuring has taken place" in the USA airline industry.
"We have to show our investors and ourselves that this is for real," he added, commenting that carriers can't "give into temptations" to raise capacity or spend too much capital. "Crises force discipline," he told analysts and reporters. "Unfortunately, when the crisis subsides, [in the past] we tended to give into temptation…[But] I think it's dramatically different this time through. We're coming out of the cycle a much more consolidated industry and I think CEOs have gotten the message [that cost and capacity management are critical]."
He continued, "There's never been a period when the industry is generating record results when other businesses are struggling [as is the case now]. The question is, 'Can it last?' Or will we fall back into the traps of the past."
He promised (AMW)/(USA) will keep capacity growth tight. CFO, Derek Kerr said (AMW)/(USA)'s 2011 mainline capacity will be up by "just under 2%" compared to 2010. "At this time, we expect  domestic capacity to be flat" with +8% growth in international (RPM)s traffic.
Third-quarter revenue lifted +16.9% to $3.18 billion, while expenses increased +5.6% to $2.86 billion, producing operating income of +$315 million, significantly widened from a +$6 million operating profit in the 2009 September quarter. President, Scott Kirby said (AMW)/(USA)'s rising revenue performance is "being driven largely by improved business demand," noting that "business-oriented markets significantly outperformed leisure markets." He said passenger traffic demand on flights to Florida and Hawaii is "essentially flat year-over-year."
(AMW)/(USA)'s third-quarter mainline traffic heightened +2.8% year-over-year to 16.16 billion (RPM)s on a +2.3% rise in capacity to 19.14 billion (ASM)s. Load factor was up +0.4 point to 84.4% LF. Yield increased +14.4% to 12.79 cents as (PRASM) rose +15% to 10.79 cents and (CASM) grew +3.1% to 11.34 cents. (CASM) ex-fuel was flat at 8.06 cents.
November 2010: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) announced it plans to add a total of 500 flight attendants (CA) and pilots (FC) through “a combination of new hires and recalls of furloughed workers.” It said the need for the workers is driven by planned retirements and attrition. (AMW)/(USA) plans to hire 420 flight attendants (CA) and 80 pilots (FC) by July 2011. After the recalls, (AMW)/(USA) said it expects to employ approximately 4,970 pilots (FC) and 7,300 flight attendants (CA).
(AMW)/(USA) will operate daily, Charlotte service to Madrid with a 767-200 (May 4 to October 29) and Dublin aboard a 757-200 (May 6 to September 30).
December 2010: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) will not reinstate its nonstop service between Philadelphia International Airport and Oslo Gardermoen Airport in Norway this summer and is dropping the route from its reservation system on December 18 because the city pair “has underperformed financially.” (AMW)/(USA)’s 767 service to Barcelona’s El Prat Airport meanwhile is being up-graded to an A330-200.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) recalled 20 pilots (FC) in November and 13 pilots (FC) are on voluntary leave. Recall has been offered to all (AMW)/(USA) pilots (FC) with the December 13 class. New hires are expected to be placed in classes at approximately 10 per month throughout the first half of 2011 at this time with potentially more to follow in second half of 2011.
757-28A (32448, N756NA), American Airlines (AAL) wet-leased.
January 2011: SEE ATTACHED "USA-2011-01-2010 WORLD TOP TRAFFIC."
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) operated 4.74 billion system (RPM)s traffic in December, a +5.7% increase from the year-ago month. Capacity rose +3.7% to 5.87 billion (ASM)s and load factor gained +1.5 points to 80.8% LF. Full-year (RPM)s rose +1.9% to 58.98 billion, (ASM)s climbed +1.2% to 71.59 billion, and load factor lifted +0.5 point to 82.4% LF.
(AMW)/(USA) posted net income of +$502 million in 2010, reversed from a net loss of -$205 million in 2009 and the second highest annual profit in its history. For the first time since 2006, it achieved a profitable fourth quarter, earning +$28 million, turned around from a -$79 million deficit in the prior-year period. Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker noted, "2008 and 2009 were extraordinarily difficult years for our industry. (AMW)/(USA) took decisive actions to manage through those challenges - - including reducing capacity, realigning our network to focus on key markets, introducing new revenue streams, controlling costs, and maintaining a commitment to exceptional operating reliability."
(AMW)/(USA)'s full-year 2010 revenue lifted +13.9% to $11.9 billion, while expenses climbed +7.6% to $11.1 billion including a +28.3% increase in fuel costs to $2.4 billion. Operating income was $781 million, considerably widened from a 2009 operating profit of +$118 million. Mainline traffic increased +1.9% to 58.98 billion (RPM)s on a +1.2% heightening of capacity to 71.59 billion (ASM)s, producing a load factor of 82.4% LF, up +0.5 point. Yield improved +11.1% to 12.96 cents as (PRASM) rose +11.9% to 10.68 cents and (CASM) escalated +6.1% to 11.73 cents. (CASM) ex-fuel edged up +0.4% to 8.37 cents.
(AMW)/(USA) said in 2010 it focused on "aggressively" managing costs, achieving flat year-over-year mainline unit costs excluding fuel and special items in 2010. This year, it will take 12 A321s and one 757. It also plans to hire 420 flight attendants (CA) and 80 pilots (FC).
"These steps, combined with 2010's improving economic environment, have now put (AMW)/(USA) back on the path to sustained profitability," Parker stated. "We fully understand, though, that remaining on that path requires commitment to the same steps that allowed us to navigate through the crisis."
(AMW)/(USA) says it carried paying passengers about 4.9 billion miles in December, as traffic rose +5.7% (RPM)s from year-earlier levels. Trans-Atlantic traffic surged +21%. Capacity rose at a slower +4% rate, leading to planes that flew 80.4% LF full, an increase of +1.6 percentage points.
(AMW)/(USA) has signed a five-year lease extension on three hangars at Pittsburgh International Airport used for heavy maintenance. The move signals that more than >900 maintenance (MT) jobs are likely to stay in the area through 2015. Pittsburgh "remains an important location for (AMW)/(USA), with the opening of an all new state-of-the-art operations control center, which opened in 2008, and the presence of our heavy maintenance facility," said a spokesman for (AMW)/(USA).
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has approved a $5.2 billion expansion for Philadelphia International Airport, which will add a 9,100-foot runway, extend two others, upgrade and reconfigure the terminal complex and add two terminals. Once completed in 2025, supporters hope the project will alleviate congestion and improve flight times.
(ITA) Software announced US Airways (AMW)/(USA) has deployed "ReShop" on its website, a solution that enables customers to change partially and wholly unflown domestic tickets through the "Manage Reservations" feature, reducing the number of manual transactions handled by the airline's reservations call centers.
February 2011: The US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) flew a combined 4.63 billion (RPM)s traffic in January, a +4.3% improvement year-over-year, on a -0.2% decline in capacity to 5.95 billion (ASM)s. Load factor rose +3.3 points to 77.7% LF.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) became one of the first USA airlines to receive (FAA) validation of its company-wide implementation of the Safety Management System (SMS), a voluntary safety enhancement program. (AMW)/(USA) said it established systems and programs company-wide, and within each covered department, to help identify and predict where future safety risks might occur, or where existing risks might grow worse.
(AMW)/(USA)'s Flight Operations (pilots (FC)), In-Flight (flight attendants (CA)), Operations Control (dispatchers) and Airport Operations & Technical Operations (maintenance (MT)) departments have all achieved level four of the (SMS) program, the final stage of implementation, where all (SMS) processes are in place.
It looks like airlines are charging more to fly. American Airlines (AAL) added fuel surcharges of as much as $5 each way on most routes. And United Continental Holdings (UCH) has its own $3 each-way surcharge. Rick Seaney, the CEO of http://www.FareCompare.com, says it's the fifth increase since December. He says US Airways Group (AMW)/(USA) and Delta Air Lines (DAL) have matched the increases on some routes. The big question is whether Southwest Airlines (SWA) will match the increases. Seaney says airlines haven't used fuel surcharges since 2008, when oil prices spiked.
JP Morgan analyst, Jamie Baker says airlines would need to raise prices further, or cut capacity, to make up for the recent increases in jet fuel prices.
(AMW)/(USA) has offered recall to all (AMW)/(USA) pilots (FC) for the Embraer EMB-190. However, there are currently 116 on furlough that are bypassing. Pilots (FC) are allowed to bypass recall without penalty. (AMW)/(USA) is interviewing and estimates are that 36 of 51 new hires will be in training by the end of March.
March 2011: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) said its employees will receive profit sharing checks for the first time since 2007 totaling more than >$47 million. Employees have already received more than >$25 million in operational incentive bonuses and employee recognition awards over the past year. (AMW)/(USA)'s Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker said, "Our team ran a safe, reliable airline in 2010, completing more scheduled flights and delivering baggage more reliably than our network peers. Our customers have noticed the turnaround and our financial results reflect these positive results."
April 2011: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) filed a civil antitrust lawsuit against Sabre Holdings Corporation to halt what it calls “anti-competitive and anti-consumer” practices by the Global Distribution System (GDS), as well as recover monetary damages. The action comes a week after American Airlines (AAL) filed a lawsuit against Travelport — parent of Galileo, Apollo and Worldspan — and Orbitz alleging similar antitrust (ATI) violations.
In its lawsuit, (AMW)/(USA) charges that Sabre has “engaged in a pattern of exclusionary conduct to shut out competition, protect its monopoly pricing power, and maintain its technologically obsolete business model.” (AMW)/(USA) contends that Sabre “has wielded its significant market power and control through exclusionary commitments from travel agents and other (GDS)s, as well as through anti-competitive requirements placed on (AMW)/(USA) and other airlines in order to sell their tickets.”
For example, (AMW)/(USA) said it frequently offered more “favorable Web-only and other promotional fares at discounted levels through select distribution channels.” (AMW)/(USA) claims that Sabre’s full content requirements “effectively have eliminated the airline’s ability to offer these types of fares and resulted in increased ticket prices for consumers.” Sabre also “for some time also threatened to block (AMW)/(USA)’s Choice Seats program from being offered through other distribution channels.” In its suit, (AMW)/(USA) said that "over >35% of [its] revenue is booked through Sabre," adding that if it lost the revenue booked through Sabre it "would likely be forced into bankruptcy."
(AMW)/(USA) said that “all of these actions by Sabre hurt consumers through higher prices, reduced innovation and fewer choices.” (AMW)/(USA) said it “does not expect the lawsuit to disrupt its recent agreement for the display and distribution of tickets.”
Sabre spokeswoman, Nancy St Pierre said, “We are aware of (AMW)/(USA)’s actions today and are reviewing the details of their legal claims. We will have further comment when appropriate.”
(AMW)/(USA) President, Scott Kirby said that (AMW)/(USA) wants to be able to widely distribute its products and services to consumers in a cost-effective and efficient way, "but Sabre continues to erect roadblocks to this goal.”
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) has not made a decision on whether to install Aircell's Gogo onboard Wi-Fi across its domestic fleet. At present, only (AMW)/(USA)'s A321s are equipped and usage is very low, according to President, Scott Kirby, who told reporters that it averages "below 5%" while "breakeven is north of 20%." However, he also expects that on board connectivity eventually will become prevalent among USA carriers for competitive reasons.
(AMW)/(USA) also said it plans to install a first-class (F) cabin on board 110 (AMW)/(USA) regional jets this year, comprising 52 CRJ-700/900 airplanes and 58 Embraer EMB-170/175s. The cost of the program was put at $35 million by Executive VP & CFO, Derek Kerr. It will be completed by January 2012.
Additionally, (AMW)/(USA) is rolling out new menus for its first-class (F) domestic and international Envoy-class cabins. International presentation is also getting a makeover with upgraded linens and modern china, it said. It is bringing back glassware to its domestic premium product, replacing plastic cups and wine glasses.
May 2011: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) will operate daily seasonal, Dublin - Charlotte 757-200 Extended Twin-engine OPerationS (ETOPS) service beginning May 15.
June 2011: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) launched thrice-daily, Philadelphia - Quebec service.
July 2011: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) recorded an "all-time record" of 87.1% LF for its average mainline June load factor, up +0.2 point over June 2010. It operated 5.73 billion mainline traffic (RPM)s for the month, up +2.5% year-over-year, against a +2.3% lift in capacity to 6.58 billion capacity (ASM)s. (AMW)/(USA) expects 2011 system capacity to be +1% higher than 2010; mainline capacity is projected at +1.5% higher. It is scheduled to take delivery of 12 A321s in the second half of 2011 and 12 A320 family airplanes in 2012 (to replace 737-300s/400s).
Major USA airlines reporting second-quarter earnings were able to point to profitable results, though net income declined sharply year-over-year, owing mostly to high fuel prices and a sluggish economic rebound. "2011 could easily break 2008's record for highest fuel prices ever," US Airways (AMW)/(USA) Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker told analysts and reporters.
(AMW)/(USA) posted net income of +$92 million for the period, down -67.2% from a +$279 million profit in the 2010 June quarter.
(AMW)/(USA)'s revenue lifted +10.5% to $3.5 billion, while expenses jumped +18.8% to $3.33 billion, including a +53.8% surge in fuel costs to $948 million. Operating income was down -52.2% to $177 million. Parker noted that if fuel prices had remained consistent with the year-ago period, (AMW)/(USA)'s second-quarter fuel bill would have been -$400 million lower.
He pointed out that the pre-recession 2008 economy was better than the current economy, and fuel prices this year are just as high. "Yet in 2008 our industry lost about $5 billion," he commented. "Analysts are forecasting profits for 2011. That is a major improvement and it's a result of significant structural changes … That's not to say we're done. If the current economic environment is the new normal, which I think we should assume, then our industry will [continue to] adapt . . . The biggest thing to help our industry since 2008 is consolidation."
(AMW)/(USA) reached a code share agreement with Aegean Airlines (CRM). Subject to both USA (DOT) and Greek government approval, (AMW)/(USA) customers will gain access to Athens (ATH) and Thessaloniki via (CRM) service from London Heathrow (LHR), Munich (MUC) and Rome (CIA), as well as access to Crete, Mykonos, Santorini, Kos, Rhodes, Larnaca and Cyprus, through the (CRM) (ATH) base. (CRM) customers will gain access to Philadelphia (PHL) via (AMW)/(USA) seasonal service to (ATH), as well as "numerous connecting opportunities" to (PHL) and Charlotte, Paris Charles De Gaulle, Madrid, Frankfurt, (CIA), (LHR), (MUC) and Brussels.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) named Paul Galleberg, VP Legal Affairs and John McDonald, VP Corporate Communications.
MTU Maintenance Hannover extended its (V2500-A1) Engine Maintenance agreement with (AMW)/(USA) until the end of 2016.
September 2011: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) has deployed NCR Corporation mobile boarding pass technology at 14 USA airports, following pilot programs at Las Vegas and Charlotte. (AMW)/(USA) said it plans to expand to additional airports this year.
With the mobile boarding pass, customers receive an email following check-in, with a digitally signed and encrypted 2D bar code compatible with airport scanners and boarding gate readers. “Consumers increasingly expect more control at their fingertips,” NCR Travel VP & General Manager, Tyler Craig said. “By expanding its self-service offering beyond kiosk and web to include NCR Mobile Pass, US Airways (AMW)/(USA) is furthering its commitment to providing a seamless and convenient passenger experience.”
October 2011: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) reported its highest third-quarter revenues in company history, earning +$3.44 billion, up +8.1% year-over-year. (AMW)/(USA) posted a +13.7% increase in total expenses for the quarter, including a +44.9% increase in fuel-related costs. Driven by the increase, its net income dove -68.3% to +$76 million from the +$240 million earned in third-quarter 2010.
"We are pleased to report a third-quarter 2011 profit, particularly given the +44% year-over-year increase in fuel price,” USA Chairman & CEO, Doug Parker said. “Customer demand continues to be strong as evidenced by the highest third-quarter revenue and total revenue per (ASM) in company history. Our third-quarter mainline unit cost excluding fuel, special items and profit sharing was up only +1.7%, despite a -0.6% reduction in (ASM)s.”
Third-quarter mainline passenger traffic rose +1.9% year-over-year to 16.47 billion (RPM)s, on a -0.6% decrease in capacity to 19.03 billion (ASM)s. Load factor climbed +2.1 points to 86.5% LF.
"Looking forward, we see continued strong demand in the fourth quarter,” Parker said. “Thanks to continued capacity discipline, aggressive cost control and focus on outstanding operating reliability, we believe (AMW)/(USA) is well positioned for 2012."
(AMW)/(USA) will discontinue 2X-daily, seasonal Phoenix - Telluride, Colorado service.
3 A321-231s (4885, N546UW; 4893, N547UW; 4898, N548UW) deliveries ex-(D-AVZD; D-AVZE; D-AVZF).
November 2011: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) will launch weekly, New York LaGuardia - Phoenix service on March 10 and daily, Salt Lake City - Charlotte service on March 4.
(AMW)/(USA) has promoted Keith Bush to Senior VP Finance and appointed Ryan Price as VP Human Resources (HR). Price succeeds Dan Pon, who will be leaving (AMW)/(USA) at the end of the year.
December 2011: “It’s particularly fitting that our 7,000th airplane is an A321 going to US Airways (AMW)/(USA), said Tom Enders, Airbus (EDS) President & CEO. This milestone comes just two years after the delivery of (EDS)’s 6,000th airplane.
(AMW)/(USA) operates the largest fleet of Airbus (EDS) airplanes in the world, and by the end of the year, (AMW)/(USA) will operate a fleet of 93 A319s, 72 A320s, 63 A321s and 16 A330s. (AMW)/(USA) also has firm orders for an additional 58 A320 Family airplanes, eight A330 airplanes and 22 A350 XWBs on backlog.
January 2012: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) reported 2011 net income of +$71 million, down -85.8% from a +$502 million net profit in 2010. The earnings result nevertheless marked (AMW)/(USA)'s second consecutive year in the black despite a steep rise in spending on fuel.
A strong revenue performance and non-fuel expense control allowed (AMW)/(USA) to withstand a +41.4% year-over-year increase in annual airplane fuel costs to $3.4 billion. "Considering where fuel prices were, we're very happy with the results," Chairman & (CEO), Doug Parker said. "Fuel expense was up +$1.2 billion" compared to 2010 but "impressive revenue growth" helped offset the spike and allow for profitability.
(AMW)/(USA) vowed to keep a lid on capacity, with mainline capacity (ASM)s projected to rise just +1% year-over-year for the full year 2012. The mainline fleet will actually shrink in 2012 in terms of units by three to 337 airplanes by year end. (AMW)/(USA) will take delivery of 12 A321s this year, while retiring 15 older 737s, including its remaining 737-300s.
Parker declined to engage in speculation over (AMW)/(USA)'s possible interest in merging with bankrupt American Airlines (AAL), saying only that (AMW)/(USA) has retained advisors to help it "explore our options" and study (AAL). But he emphasized that "a large amount of consolidation has already occurred in our industry," alleviating the urgency for new combinations. (AMW)/(USA) will continue to perform well as a standalone carrier, he said. "We can control our own destiny."
(AMW)/(USA) President, Scott Kirby said (AMW)/(USA) is benefiting from a "robust pricing and demand environment" with metrics trending up. "The new year has started out strong both for business and leisure demand," he reported. "Business demand in particular remains quite strong. The pricing environment also remains strong and we're successfully recovering fuel costs."
(AMW)/(USA)'s 2011 revenue rose +9.6% to $13.06 billion, while expenses increased by +13.5% to $12.63 billion, producing operating income of +$426 million, down -45.4%. Mainline traffic grew +3.1% to 60.78 billion (RPM)s on a +1.4% increase in capacity to 72.6 billion (ASM)s, producing a load factor of 83.7% LF, up +1.3 points. Yield lifted +7.9% to 13.99 cents.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) and American Airlines (AAL) have confirmed they have added a $3 surcharge each way ($6 for a roundtrip) onto tickets purchased in the USA for flights to and from Europe, in the wake of the European Union’s Emissions Trading Scheme (EU ETS), which took effect January 1.
These surcharges follow the announcement by Delta Air Lines (DAL) of its $3 surcharge. According to "Reuters," United Continental (UAL)/(CAL) has also matched the charge as USA airlines seek to offset the cost of the controversial (ETS).
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) recently opened its Flight Crew (FC) application window. The company has offered recall to all (AMW)/(USA) pilots (FC) for the EMB-190. However, there are currently 57 on furlough that are bypassing with recall rights in the future. Possible hiring started in January with 20 - 30 new hires a month for all of 2012. See FltOps.com and FAPA.aero.
March 2012: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) is optimistic it will be able to pass on the majority of 2012 fuel cost spikes to the customer and remain profitable.
(AMW)/(USA) reported a +$71 million profit for 2011 even though its fuel costs were +$1.2 billion higher than 2010 as oil prices skyrocketed. When it faced a similar fuel-spike situation in 2008, (AMW)/(USA) lost -$808 million. (AMW)/(USA) Chairman & (CEO), Doug Parker said the difference in 2011 was that the airline was able to pass on 85% of the increase to passengers.
“The outlook for 2012 is uncertain, but we will be able to do the things we did in 2011 and there’s a strong demand environment for leisure and business travel. Booking demand is really strong and the economy feels like it’s on a bit of firmer footing, so we are cautiously optimistic for 2012,” Parker said.
“Fuel prices have been up quite a bit this year, but we have been encouraged by the [USA airline] industry’s ability to cope with that and handle these events. Certainly, it feels like we can handle it,” Parker said. “What we do know is that as oil prices have risen to record levels, the industry and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) can handle it and we expect to remain profitable.”
(AMW)/(USA) Senior VP Marketing & Planning, Andrew Nocella added, “I think we can say with some confidence that even with a normal fuel price spike environment, which we saw last year and at the beginning of this year, our ability to adapt and pass that to the customer is high. I have faith we can ride out that storm if it comes.”
(AMW)/(USA) plans to launch five new routes from Washington National airport from July, and will increase to twice daily, its planned once-daily flight from Washington DC to Valparaiso, which is scheduled to begin later this month.
(AMW)/(USA) will begin flights to Augusta, Fayetteville (Arkansas), Minneapolis, Montreal, and Toronto.
On 10 March, US Airways (AMW)/(USA) started a weekly service to New York LaGuardia (LGA) from its Arizona hub at Phoenix (PHX), which will be offered using A319 airplanes in a 12F, 112Y-seat configuration. LaGuardia becomes the third New York airport to be served by (AMW)/(USA) from Phoenix, with 21 frequencies offered to both Newark and (JFK). Although no other carrier provides direct competition, (AMW)/(USA) will have to indirectly face United (UAL) and Southwest (SWA), with their 28 and 14 respective weekly services to Newark, as well as JetBlue (JBL) and Delta (DAL), which provide 13 weekly (JFK) services each.
Several carriers, including Delta Air Lines (DAL) and United Airlines (UAL), operate nonstop between Washington National and Minneapolis. Air Canada (ACN) operates to both Montreal and Toronto from Washington National.
Late last year, Delta (DAL) and (AMW)/(USA) concluded a slot swap, which resulted in (AMW)/(USA) acquiring 42 slot pairs at Washington National. It has been progressively announcing new services from the airport.
(AMW)/(USA) is scheduled to take delivery of 12 A320s this year; +16 more A320s and five A330s in 2013; 18 A320s and three A330s in 2014; and 12 A320s in 2015. All of those airplanes will be replacements.
(AMW)/(USA) announced it has signed a new agreement with Wi-Fi supplier gogo to expand its onboard Wi-Fi service to more of its Airbus (EDS) narrow bodies and to extend the service to its Embraer EMB-190/-175/-170 regional jets.
The airline will add Wi-Fi to 73 Embraer jets by mid-2012 and to 209 A320s by mid-2013, Senior VP Marketing & Planning, Andrew Nocella said.
(AMW)/(USA) first introduced Wi-Fi on its A321s in 2010.
April 2012: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) reported first-quarter net income of +$48 million, reversed from a net loss of -$114 million in the prior-year period, though it conceded that was in the red excluding special items. (AMW)/(USA) management also reiterated their interest in a possible merger with American Airlines (AAL), telling analysts and reporters that the combination would produce $1.2 billion in annual synergies.
Regarding the potential merger, Chairman & (CEO), Doug Parker said, “We are focused on the full unsecured creditors committee. We are eager to show the creditors that our plan would create more value than a standalone plan.”
Noting that (AMW)/(USA) has already secured the support of bankrupt (AAL)’s three largest unions, Parker indicated that (AMW)/(USA) hopes to convince a reluctant (AAL) management team, once it has won the support of creditors. “We would prefer to be working in concert with the [AAL] management team,” he said, adding that (AMW)/(USA) expects there to eventually be a “cooperative and consensual process” with (AAL) management.
(AMW)/(USA)’s first-quarter net loss excluding special items was -$22 million, improved over a -$110 million net loss on a similar basis in the 2011 March quarter. (AMW)/(USA)’s slot transaction with Delta Air Lines (DAL) netted (AMW)/(USA) a $70 million special credit that buttressed the bottom line for the year’s first three months. It expects another similar credit from the slot swap to be realized in its 2012 third-quarter earnings.
First-quarter revenue rose +10.3% year-over-year to $3.27 billion, while expenses increased +6.9% to $3.21 billion, producing operating income of +$59 million, reversed from an operating deficit of -$39 million in the prior-year quarter. Mainline traffic grew +5.4% to 14.3 billion (RPM)s on a +4% lift in capacity to 17.72 billion (ASM)s, producing a load factor of 80.7% LF, up +1 point. Yield improved +5.7% to 14.8 cents.
President, Scott Kirby said, “Both leisure and business demand were strong in the quarter and we successfully passed on all fuel costs with fare increases. The strong demand environment is leading to a strong pricing environment.”
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) and American Airlines’ (AAL)'s three largest unions reached an agreement that supports a US Airways - American Airlines merger, a major development that threatens to upend (AAL)’s plans to emerge from Chapter 11 bankruptcy restructuring as an independent carrier.
In a letter to (AMW)/(USA) employees, Chairman & (CEO), Doug Parker said, “First of all, today’s news does not mean we have agreed to merge with American Airlines (AAL). It only means we have reached agreements with these three unions on what their collective bargaining agreements would look like after a merger, and that they would like to work with us to make a merger a reality.”
He said (AAL) parent, (AMR) Corporation’s creditors, management and board of directors would need to support a merger for one to happen, but the agreement with the unions “is obviously an important first step along that path and we are hopeful we can all work together to make this happen.” Parker said (AMW)/(USA) management has “concluded that a merger with (AAL), while they are undergoing their bankruptcy restructuring, represents a unique opportunity that we should not ignore. These beliefs are shared by the three American labor unions.”
(AAL) filed a motion with a USA bankruptcy court last month seeking to have its contracts with the three unions rejected.
In a joint statement, the Allied Pilots Association, the Association of Professional Flight Attendants and the Transport Workers Union, which collectively represent 55,000 of (AAL)’s approximate 80,000 employees, said, “We are pleased to confirm our support of a possible merger between our airline (AAL) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA). We have reached agreements on terms sheets for collective bargaining agreements [with (AMW)/(USA)]. As envisioned, a merger of (AMW)/(USA) and (AAL) provides the best path for all constituencies. The contemplated merger would be based on growth, preserve at least 6,200 (AAL) jobs that would be furloughed under the company’s standalone strategy, and provide employees of both (AAL) and (AMW)/(USA) with competitive, industry-standard compensation and benefits.”
Parker said that “combining American Airlines and US Airways would create a pre-eminent airline with the enhanced scale and breadth required to compete more effectively and profitably. Our intention would be to put our two complementary networks together, maintaining both airlines’ existing hubs and airplanes, and create an airline that could compete successfully with United (UAL)/(CAL), Delta (DAL) and other carriers within our industry.” He cautioned that the deal with the (AAL) unions “is one step in what will be a much longer process. For now, it remains business as usual.”
American Airlines (AAL) Chairman, President & (CEO), Tom Horton pushed back against US Airways’ (AMW)/(USA) efforts to bring about a merger of the two carriers, telling employees in a letter that “we must be mindful of other parties who don’t have our best interests at heart.” Horton emphasized that an agreement reached last week between (AMW)/USA) and (AAL)’s three largest unions to pursue a merger “in no way alter[s] our course” in terms of restructuring via the Chapter 11 bankruptcy process. “Nothing changes as a result of these announcements and we will proceed on our path toward a successful restructuring of (AAL),” he told (AAL) workers.
Addressing the (AMW)/(USA) - (AAL) unions deal specifically, he said, “It’s easy to understand US Airways’ (AMW)/(USA) sense of urgency to find a way to address the challenges it has faced for a long time. That story is well known.”
He added that “what’s best for our company, our people and our financial stakeholders will be determined by the facts in a disciplined manner and process. And this includes whether (AAL) will choose to pursue any combination down the road. This is the charge of the board of directors.”
Horton cautioned (AAL) employees to be wary of quick fixes, noting that “there is no easy path back to renewal and growth and industry leadership. It will require difficult choices.” He said (AAL) needs to be mindful of third parties “working their own agendas at our expense.”
He argued that (AAL) is “making significant progress” in the Chapter 11 process, and noted that the court has granted (AAL) the “exclusive right to pursue our plan of reorganization at least through the end of September and this may be extended further. We will continue to follow the prescribed court supervised restructuring process.”
(AAL) has meanwhile announced plans to increase its target of job cuts under bankruptcy protection from -13,000 to -14,200 positions.
In the week following the release of the iPad, Gogo Director Airline Operations, Tim Lemaster said the Wi-Fi provider identified over >10,000 separate usages of iPads being used on board airplanes. The tablets continue to outpace cell phones and laptops 10 to one on airplanes, he said.
“The traditional In-Flight Entertainment (IFE)s are going to be squeezed down to a more long-haul market,” Lemaster said. He pointed out that Wi-Fi-enabled short-haul flights that take advantage of passengers’ own personal electronic devices (PEDs) could help the industry avoid buying and installing seatback systems. However, on a 3-hour flight, Gogo has seen the average passenger pushing 61 megabytes by themselves — - a challenging amount of data to support on multiple (PED)s. “It is a big challenge in the industry,” of “how to push more through the pipe, because the pipe is limited,” he said.
American Airlines (AAL) provides passengers with Samsung tablets on select routes, Manager (IFE), Erik Miller said. “Customers love them,” but he cautioned “there are pros and cons” to eliminating the seatback system altogether.
“Airlines used to take a year to 18 months looking at new airplanes, looking at new systems,” Lemaster said. “Is the right decision today to go away from a traditional (IFE)? It probably makes sense on a short-haul flight (people are already bringing on their own personal devices). I would say in the next three to five years, we will see that decision more and more, move away from the traditional (IFE).”
“Capacity discipline — that’s one of the ways we’ve been able to survive,” US Airways (AMW)/(USA) (COO), Robert Isom said of the carrier’s strategy. Along with capacity discipline, ancillary revenues have been helping (AMW)/(USA) offset the high price of fuel, he noted. It earned a +$71 million profit for the full year 2011 on a $1.2 billion year-over-year increase in fuel costs.
“Charging for luggage has been a huge deal,” Isom said. He said (AMW)/(USA) has earned ancillary revenues in excess of >$5 million a year, largely from baggage, but also through the growing popularity of its “choice seats” program.
Looking ahead, Isom said he sees a “mature marketplace in the USA” and expects that “growth is going to be very limited in the USA marketplace as a whole.” (AMW)/(USA) this year plans to take delivery of new airplanes to replace aging airplanes, rather than increase fleet size.
May 2012: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) will launch daily, EMB-190 service from Austin and San Antonio to Philadelphia on September 5. It will also increase 5X-daily, Dallas - Philadelphia service to 6X-daily and increase 3X-daily, New York (JFK) - Charlotte service to 5X-daily on September 5.
Italy's Venice’s long haul flights comprise three transatlantic connections and two routes to Middle East hubs. Delta (DAL) serves Venice from both Atlanta and New York (JFK), while US Airways (AMW)/(USA) has daily flights from Philadelphia. During the last year, Emirates (EAD) increased frequencies on its Dubai service to double-daily, while Qatar Airways (QTA) serves Doha daily. Air Transat (AIJ) also has weekly flights in the summer to Montreal and Toronto.
(AMW)/(USA) is considering adding Star (SAL) Alliance hubs Beijing Capital (PEK), Istanbul Atatürk/Yesilköy International (IST) and/or Tokyo Narita New Tokyo International (NRT) as its next long-haul destinations from Philadelphia International (PHL) according to a report by the "Philadelphia Inquirer." With the exception of Tel Aviv Ben Gurion airport (TLV), it currently only serves European long-haul destinations from Philadelphia.
The (FAA) is proposing a $395,850 civil penalty against US Airways ((AMW)/(USA)) for allegedly violating USA Department of Transportation hazardous materials regulations.
The (FAA) said a periodic dangerous goods inspection of USA facilities at Hartford’s Bradley International airport (BDL) between May 10 - 18, 2010 revealed (AMW)/(USA) “committed various violations on 12 flights to/from (BDL) between February 26 and May 12, 2010,” it alleged.
In one instance, the (FAA) alleged that (AMW)/(USA) “had accepted an undeclared shipment containing 10 disposable cigarette lighters filled with flammable gas,” a discrepancy the airline failed to report, according to the regulator.
“In another instance, (AMW)/(USA) offered an improperly packaged shipment containing wet cell batteries filled with alkali (a corrosive) for transportation by air on a (AMW)/(USA) passenger-carrying flight,” the (FAA) stated.
The (FAA) also alleged the airline failed to provide pilots (FC) with the required "accurate and legible written information" regarding 23 shipments of hazardous materials it accepted for transportation by air.
An (AMW)/(USA) spokesperson said it has “responded promptly to the (FAA) regarding this matter in June 2010 and initiated a comprehensive review of our hazardous materials handling procedures and systematically evaluated our cargo operations to ensure we operate at the highest level of safety.”
(AMW/(USA) has 30 days to respond to the (FAA).
June 2012: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) and private equity company (TPG) Capital have joined forces and are exploring a joint bid to takeover American Airlines (AAL) according to a report published by "Reuters." (TPG) Capital is an investor in several airlines including Ryanair (RYR) and has previously helped Continental Airlines (CAL) (IAH)) to restructure.
(AMW)/(USA) Chairman & (CEO), Doug Parker said that rival American Airlines (AAL) is saddled with “a structural weakness that bankruptcy can’t fix,” and again called for (AAL) to consider a merger with (AMW)/(USA).
Parker pointed out that (AAL) “sat out consolidation” in the USA airline industry in recent years, and “now in a smaller industry, they’re further down the chain” in terms of market share and operational efficiency. Emerging from Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection as a standalone carrier, which is (AAL) management’s preferred option, will leave (AAL) with a weak competitive network compared to Delta Air Lines (DAL) and United Airlines (UAL), both of which are beneficiaries of recent mergers, Parker said.
But, he added, “if you put these two networks together [(AMW)/(USA) and (AAL)], they’re highly complementary and [would create an airline that] could compete with anyone.” He acknowledged that “bankruptcy is a complicated process” with “its own rhythm and pace,” and said (AMW)/(USA) will “respect the process” and the time it takes.
“We do see a potentially large value creation opportunity” through a (AMW)/(USA)-(AAL) merger, Parker contended, noting that (AAL)’s three largest unions and the stock market have shown support for the combination.
As long as (AMW)/(USA) is allowed to present its plan to (AAL)’s unsecured creditors and management, it is “highly confident” of demonstrating a merger would be “far superior” to any other alternative for (AAL), Parker said.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) has filed for USA government approval of a potential merger with American Airlines (AAL) according to a report published by "Reuters." (AMW)/(USA) hopes that getting antitrust immunity (ATI) prior to a potential transaction would help it to get more support from American Airlines (AAL) shareholders.
July 2012: Excluding net special charges, US Airways ((AMW)/(USA) reported a second-quarter net profit of +$321 million, more than tripling its second quarter 2011 net profit (excluding net special charges) of +$106 million. It also reiterated its support for a possible merger with American Airlines (AAL) telling analysts and journalists, “(AMR) has indicated it is actually open to considering mergers while it is in bankruptcy. We’re certain that any objective analysis [will show] that the best plan for AMR is a merger with US Airways (AMW)/(USA) during the bankruptcy process.”
The insight is a turnaround from its last quarterly earnings report in which (AMW)/(USA) sought a “cooperative and consensual process” with (AAL) management.
(AMW)/(USA) recorded (GAAP) net profit for the second quarter of +$306 million, a +$214 million year-over-year jump from +$92 million.
"We are extremely pleased to report the highest quarterly profit in our company's history,” (AMW)/(USA) Group Chairman & (CEO), Doug Parker said. “Consumer demand for our product remained strong during the second quarter, resulting in record revenue, passenger yields, and unit revenue performance. These financial and operating results are not only the best in (AMW)/(USA)s' history but also among the very best in the industry, proving that (AMW)/(USA) is well-positioned for the remainder of 2012 and beyond.”
Revenues increased +7.2% year-over-year to $3.8 billion, on a +0.7% increase in operating expenses to $3.4 billion. Fuel costs for the quarter fell -4.4% to $906 million and operating income totaled +$404 million, a significant jump from 2011 second quarter operating income of $177 million. Mainline traffic grew +0.9% to 16.4 billion (RPM)s on a +1.4% lift in capacity to 19.4 billion (ASM)s, producing a load factor of 84.6% LF, down -0.5 point. Yield improved +6.3% to 14.91 cents.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) was awarded USA (DOT) permanent authority to operate daily Jackson, Mississipi - Washington Reagan service. It has been flying the route since March 4 under temporary authority.
A321-231 (5235, N555AY), ex-(D-AVZM), sold to Avolon on delivery and leased back.
September 2012: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) launched daily, Austin - Philadelphia service on September 6.
(AMW)/(USA) flight attendants (CA), represented by the Association of Flight Attendants (AFA) narrowly defeated a proposed five-year collective bargaining agreement, in a 51% to 49% vote. (AMW)/(USA) and the (AFA) reached a tentative agreement on August 7 that would have amended existing contracts for the airline’s 6,800 flight attendants (CA) based in its three hub cities of Charlotte, North Carolina, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and Phoenix, Arizona, plus its Washington DC focus city.
(AMW)/(USA) Chairman & (CEO), Doug Parker said, “The tentative agreement was unanimously endorsed by (AFA) leaders in each domicile and by the members of the (AFA) negotiating committee. Going forward, our current collective bargaining agreements remain in place, and we will consult with the National Mediation Board to determine the next steps.”
(ACSS), an L-3 Communications (ESM) and Thales (THL) joint venture company, said US Airways (AMW)/(USA) received Supplemental Type Certification (STC) on its A330 airplanes for DO-260B (TSO c166b) capability using (ACSS)’s XS-950 Mode S Transponder. DO-260B is the highest level of Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast transmission (ADS-B Out). US Airways (AMW)/(USA) will equip 20 A330s as part of the (FAA)’s NextGen implementation program.
The XS-950 in 2011 was certified to DO-260B, which enables (ADS-B) transmission of more information about an airplane’s position, speed and intent.
“US Airways (AMW)/(USA) and our other airline partners understand and embrace the opportunities and savings NextGen provides for operators,” said Terry Flaishans, General Manager of (ACSS). “Our investment in (ADS-B) avionics is helping airlines fly the most efficient routes to their destinations.”
“A lot of time and hard work has been invested by (ACSS), the (FAA) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) in reaching this milestone,” said Ron Thomas, Managing Director, (AMW)/(USA) Flight Technical Operations. “US Airways (AMW)/(USA) is proud to partner with these organizations to help demonstrate the benefits of (ADS-B Out), including the more precise position information it provides to enhance situational awareness and create a safer environment for all users.”
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) will start taking delivery later this fall of five additional ex-Republic Airlines ((IATA) Code: YX, based at Chicago O'Hare International (ORD)) EMB-190s it had previously operated before the airplanes were transferred to Republic in 2009. The first two of the airplanes currently operated by Republic on behalf of Frontier Airlines (FRO) are going to be re-registered back to their original registrations of N961UW (0183, N961UW) and (0191, N963UW).
October 2012: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) flight attendants (CA), represented by the Association of Flight Attendants (AFA), announced they will take a strike vote to back up their demands for a single contract in the US Airways (USA)/America West (AMW) merger. The strike vote will open October 31 and close November 20.
Last month, (AMW)/(USA)’s 6,800 flight attendants (CA) narrowly defeated a proposed five-year collective bargaining agreement, in a 51% to 49% vote. The group said it remains “focused on achieving a contract that works for all of us and in order to do that, we need to back up our demands by taking action together. We remain focused on achieving a contract that works for all of us and in order to do that, we need to back up our demands by taking action together.”
The (AFA) said the strike vote is unanimously endorsed by the leadership of the union, including all local leaders representing US Airways (AMW)/(USA) flight attendants (CA) and the (AFA) international officers.
The USA (FAA) is proposing a $354,500 civil penalty against US Airways (AMW)/(USA) for allegedly operating a Boeing 757 on 916 flights when it was not in compliance with federal aviation regulations.
The (FAA) alleges US Airways (AMW)/(USA) removed and replaced a leaking engine fuel pump on the 757 on August 3, 2010, and failed to carry out (FAA)-required tests and inspections before returning the 757 to revenue service. The alleged-noncompliant flights took place between August 3 and December 3, 2010.
An (AMW)/(USA) spokesperson said, “We are in the process of responding to the (FAA) and believe the flights were flown in compliance with applicable rules.” (AMW)/(USA) has 30 days to respond to the agency.
November 2012: US Airways (USA) flight attendants (CA), represented by the Association of Flight Attendants (CWA) (AFA) voted for strike authorization, seeking a single contract for all (AMW)/(USA) flight attendants (CA) seven years after the merger with America West Airlines (AMW).
The (USA) flight attendants (CA) voted 94% in favor of strike authorization. “US Airways (USA) Flight Attendants (CA) are determined to do whatever it takes to get our long overdue contract,” (AFA) Presidents representing pre-merger (USA) and (HP) flight attendants, Roger Holmin and Deborah Volpe said. “[(AMW)/(USA) Chairman & (CEO) Doug] Parker and his team of negotiators have failed to address the issues that flight attendants (CA) believe are paramount for a single contract.”
The flight attendants (CA) in September voted down a proposed five-year collective bargaining agreement. “The National Mediation Board has not released the union to strike and therefore there will be no operational or flight disruptions during the holiday travel season," a spokesperson said. "The union has told our flight attendants (CA) that the strike vote is about positioning at the bargaining table and not about striking and the union has not requested that the National Mediation Board cease the mediation and negotiations process.”
In the event (AFA) and (USA) are released from mediation after failing to reach an agreement, and following a 30 day National Mediation Board-enforced “cooling off” period, (AFA) said (USA) flight attendants (CA) would begin intermittent strikes, “targeted and called without warning.”
(AFA) announced plans for a strike vote in October.
The US Airways Group estimates Hurricane "Sandy"-related cancellations to and from the USA Northeast will result in a $30 million negative impact to its revenue and a $15 million negative impact on its earnings for the month of October. November earnings are expected to take a hit of approximately $20 million.
In the days leading up to and immediately following Hurricane "Sandy," the company saw its total bookings decline -13% year-over-year for the October 24 to November 3 period. Bookings made zero to 13 days before departure declined -21% for the 11-day period, which the group estimates will negatively impact November (PRASM) by -2%.
Between October 25 and November 1, US Airways (AMW)/(USA) cancelled nearly 4,200 flights. Beginning October 29, it canceled all flights at Philadelphia, Washington DC, New York City, Boston, and other cities in the Northeast due to the storm, which caused over >20,000 flight cancelationsfor North America.
(AMW)/(USA) said its bookings have since returned to normal levels.
(AMW)/(USA) has secured slots at London Heathrow (LHR) airport allowing it to move its daily A330 service between Charlotte Douglas International (CLT) and London Gatwick (LGW) airports to (LHR) from the start of the (IATA) summer 2013 timetable period on March 31, 2013. (AMW)/(USA) currently already offers a daily flight between Philadelphia International (PHL) and (LHR). No other airline flies this route. In fact no other airline flies to anywhere in Europe from Charlotte, except Lufthansa (DLH), which serves Munich. The (LHR) flight will technically originate in Miami with a stop in Charlotte, although it's hard to imagine (AMW)/(USA) (AMW)/(USA) will actually use A330s for the Miami - Charlotte leg. More likely, this will continue a time-honored USA carrier practice of "one-stop service with an equipment change" which actually becomes a connecting itinerary like any other flight. It does, however, have some handy benefits with respect to how flights are displayed in Global Distribution Systems (GDS)s, which is why USA carriers insist on the practice even if it annoys their customers (when they realize it's really a connection). Its own European code share partners airlines might get annoyed too.
This will leave Gatwick with just three scheduled USA destinations with British Airways (BAB) still serving Las Vegas McCarran International (LAS), Orlando International (MCO) and Tampa International (TPA) and Virgin Atlantic (VAA) operating to both Las Vegas and Orlando. All other flights that had previously operated from Gatwick because of the Bermuda II agreement and slot restrictions have now been moved to Heathrow.
December 2012: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) will launch daily, Charlotte, North Carolina - London Heathrow A330-300 service March 30. (AMW)/(USA) will launch daily, Charlotte, North Carolina - Sao Paulo 767-200 service on May 5.
January 2013: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) reported a 2012 net income of +$637 million, up +797% from a +$71 million net profit in 2011. Despite the negative effects of Hurricane Sandy in October, which resulted in a -$35 million loss, (AMW)/(USA)’s fourth-quarter net income doubled to +$37 million from +$18 million in the year-ago quarter.
(AMW)/(USA) said a strong-demand environment and record passenger yields led to improved revenue performance.
Full-year revenue rose +5.9% to $13.83 billion, while expenses increased +2.7% to $12.97 billion, producing an operating income of +$856 million, doubled from 2011.
Fourth-quarter revenue rose +3.9% to $3.28 billion, while expenses increased +3.5% to $3.15 billion, producing an operating income of +$125 million, up +15.9% year-over-year.
(AMW)/(USA) Chairman & (CEO), Doug Parker told reporters and analysts the company reported its “best ever annual results in total revenue, total traffic, mainline load factor, mainline yield and mainline revenue. These outstanding operating and revenue results, combined with strong cost discipline, led to record net income (excluding special items) of +$537 million, up nearly +400% versus last year,” Parker said.
He declined to discuss the projected merger with American Airlines (AAL), citing a nondisclosure agreement.
Earlier this month, (AMW)/(USA) pilots (FC)’s union leadership has backed the merger framework proposal already supported by (AAL)’s pilots (FC). The company said it hopes to have a cabin crew (CA) agreement in place in the coming weeks.
Executive VP & (CFO), Derrick Kerr said (AMW)/(USA) ended the year with 340 mainline airplanes in its fleet and will continue its fleet replacement plan. He said this year, (AMW)/(USA) will retire 21 airplanes (18 737-400s and three older A320 airplanes, and take delivery of 16 A321s and five A330-200 airplanes. In the first quarter, (AMW)/(USA) will take delivery of two additional Embraer EMB-190s from Republic, he said.
Full-year mainline traffic grew +2.7% to 62.4 billion (RPM)s on a +2.2% increase in capacity to 74.2 billion (ASM)s, producing a load factor of 84.1% LF, up +0.4 points year-over-year. Yield increased +2.8% to 14.38 cents.
(AMW)/(USA) pilots (FC)’s union leadership has backed the merger framework proposal already supported by American Airlines (AAL)’s pilots (FC).
(AAL), in the latter stages of its Chapter 11 bankruptcy restructuring, in late December helped craft a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with its pilots (FC) that would serve as a framework for employment for the flight deck crew (FC) of a merged American (AAL)/US Airways (AMW)/(USA). The board of the Allied Pilots Association (APA), which represents (AAL)’s 10,000 pilots (FC), backed the plan. The US Airline Pilots Association board, representing US Airways (AMW)/(USA)’s 5,000 cockpit crew (FC), said it backed the plan.
(AAL) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) issued a joint statement saying they are “pleased that they have completed discussions with the [two unions] intended to develop a framework for the terms of employment for pilots (FC), as well as a process for pilot (FC) integration, in the event of a merger.” The airlines added, “This memorandum of understanding will assist all of the stakeholders, including the boards of [American] and US Airways, in making an informed decision as to whether a merger should ultimately be pursued.”
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) will launch daily, Philadelphia - Salt Lake City A320 service on June 8.
SEE ATTACHED FROM "AIRWAYS" MAGAZINE - - "USA-2013-01 - UPDATE-A/B."
February 2013: The (AMR) Corporation and the US Airways Group on February 14th unveiled an $11 billion merger deal after months of negotiations, creating the world’s biggest airline with 6,700 flights a day.
Now comes the hard part. Before they can welcome their first passenger on board, they have to get regulators to sign off on a deal and then integrate a web of intricate systems – a process that has complicated other marriages in the airline industry.
American Airlines (AAL) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) aim to complete their merger in the 2013 third quarter and see no regulatory hurdles to finalizing the deal. The two airlines entered into a definitive merger agreement on February 14th.
(AAL) parent, the (AMR) Corporation will emerge from Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection as the merger is finalized in the third quarter, US Airways (AMW)/(USA) Chairman & (CEO), Doug Parker and (AAL) Chairman, President & (CEO), Tom Horton told analysts and reporters in a conference call. The new merged airline will retain the "American Airlines" brand, be a member of the Oneworld (ONW) alliance and be led by current US Airways (AMW)/(USA) (CEO), Doug Parker with American Airlines (AAL) (CEO), Tom Horton becoming Chairman of the merged airline. (AAL) parent, (AMR) debtors will own 72% of the airlines with US Airways (AMW)/(USA) shareholders receiving the remaining 28% of the stock.
Of 900 combined routes, the two carriers operate, “there are only 12 direct overlaps,” Horton said. Consequently, “We think this should clear regulatory approval without any carve-outs,” he said. Parker added, “We don’t expect any issues with regulatory authorities.”
The main authorities that will have to clear the deal are the USA Department of Justice and the USA bankruptcy court overseeing (AMR)’s Chapter 11 process.
The two carriers have more than >600 airplanes on order through the rest of this decade and don’t plan to change their order books. “The existing airplane orders we have in place for the two companies we like with deliveries remaining in place,” Parker said.
There are more than >1,500 airplanes in the two carriers’ combined fleet (including regional airplanes), which would make the new "American" (AAL) the world’s largest carrier by fleet size. Horton noted that many of these are older airplanest that can be retired as new airplanes are delivered. “We have tremendous flexibility in the new fleet to dial up or down capacity,” Horton said.
The new American plans to keep operating all of the hubs (AAL) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) now operate, with (AAL) main hub, Dallas/Fort Worth and (AMW)/(USA) main hub, Phoenix playing key roles. “We’re not at a point where we can start looking at network rationalization,” Horton said. “The plan is to keep both hubs operated by both companies. There will be some changes, but it’s going to be based on the notion that we are going to maintain our own hubs.”
Executives from both airlines said labor deals already agreed to by work groups from both companies will facilitate the merger transition. “The fact that we have labor on board means we have 100,000 people working on the integration and it should go much smoother than [airline merger integrations have] historically,” US Airways (AMW)/(USA) President, Scott Kirby said.
In terms of systems integration, Parker said he has learned from mistakes made following the 2005 America West Airlines (AMW)-US Airways (USA) merger in which America West (AMW) (which had been led by Parker) attempted to impose its systems on the larger US Airways (USA). That caused a raft of operational problems.
“It’s much easier to put the larger airline's systems in place,” Parker said he now believes. “The ingoing premise is you’ll see most of the American Airlines (AAL) systems put in place at US Airways (AMW)/(USA).”
It looks like there’s no stopping the merger of bankrupt (AAL) with (AMW)/(USA). The deal would employ 94,000 people, fly 950 planes, operate 6,500 daily flights in nine major hubs, and generate total sales of about $39 billion.
The combined companies (according to "Reuters," the all-stock merger would value them at $10.5 billion to $11 billion giving (AAL)’s creditors 72%) would lead in some markets and lag in others. According to the "New York Times," the new airline, to be called American Airlines, would be a “market leader on the East Coast, the Southwest and South America. But it would remain a smaller player in the Pacific and Europe, where United (UAL) and Delta (DAL) are stronger.”
Unfortunately, the pro-merger chest-pounding can’t hide the fact that combining two losing companies does not make a winner. That’s because the merger makes things worse for three key stakeholders of these airlines.
The history of such mergers is that consumers end up paying the bill. One way they will pay, is in the form of (AAL)’s delayed and cancelled flights — such as the ones last fall. By combining (AAL) with (AMW)/(USA), which has had its share of delays and cancellations, it is hard to see how the combination will deliver better service.
Since 2008, the USA has lost two of its six legacy carriers and if this merger goes through, only three will remain. Americans are now at the mercy of USA regulators, who are the last bulwark between American consumers and higher airfares that inevitably result from a decline in competition.
Without mergers, it would be far more difficult for airlines to push through fare increases. And that’s just what the four surviving legacy carriers did in 2012 — pushing through six such increases. And Rick Seaney, co-founder of FareCompare.com, expects 2013 fares to rise between +3% and +6% due to reduced competition, more crowded flights, and higher oil prices.
Combining (AAL) with (AMW)/(USA) will take more money out of passenger's pockets and, absent a miracle; service will get worse.
While (AAL) has been losing money over the last several years, US Airways (AMW)/(USA) has improved its financial situation recently. But the combination of the two does not promise to generate tremendous improvements in their combined operating positions.
(AAL) (with its major hubs in Dallas, Miami, Chicago, Los Angeles and New York) has established a track record of losing market share and money. For example, the "Times" reports that its cumulative losses over the last decade total -$12 billion.
Meanwhile, US Airways (AMW)/(USA) (with hubs in Phoenix, Philadelphia and Charlotte) has lost a total of -$1.3 billion since 2008. But the good news is that while it has thin profit margin of 4.6%, its 2012 profit of +$637 million was an improvement over 2011's +$71 million profit and 2010's +$502 million net.
This is not to say that the merger will have no benefits at all. "Reuters" reports that the airlines expect “$1 billion in revenue and cost benefits.” Not only that, but (AMW)/(USA) shareholders may received a 25% premium for their shares ("Reuters" estimates that the deal would value US Airways (AMW)/(USA) - its current market capitalization is $2.4 billion) at $3 billion.
While (AMW)/(USA) (CEO), Doug Parker has gained the edge over (AAL)’s employees, he has in the past failed to win over pilots (FC). For example, in April 2012, Parker “won the public support of (AAL)’s three main labor groups. More recently, pilots (FC) from both airlines agreed on how they would work together if the merger succeeded.”
But these discussions have not been concluded and according to the "Times," in 2005, Parker merged America West (AMW), with the bigger US Airways (USA). But in the last eight years, the pilots (FC) from America West (AMW) and US Airways (USA) still lack a common contract and seniority rules, so they can’t fly together.
Labor difficulties will not go away if (AAL) and (AMW)/(USA) merge. While in bankruptcy, (AAL) “cut thousands of jobs, reduced benefits, froze pensions, and sought higher productivity rules from its employees,” reports the "Times."
(AMW)/(USA) President, Scott Kirby and (AAL) Chief Restructuring Officer, Beverly Goulet will jointly direct transition planning for the US Airways (AMW)/(USA)-(AAL) merger.
In a letter to US Airways (AMW)/(USA) and (AAL) employees, US Airways (AMW)/(USA) Chairman & (CEO), Doug Parker and (AAL) Chairman, President & (CEO), Tom Horton said Kirby and Goulet will develop “joint plans between now and closing our merger so that we are prepared to begin integration immediately upon closing. We expect to close our merger in the third quarter of this year.”
The (CEO)s said Kirby and Goulet “will be part of a transition committee chaired by the two of us and together we will establish transition planning teams led by senior leaders from both airlines. The effort will be supported by an outside merger project management firm.” They added that more details on the merger transition will be announced soon.
Executives from American Airlines (AAL) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) told Congress that the carriers’ planned merger will benefit both consumers and employees, and will leave the USA with a highly competitive airline industry. Testifying in Washington DC before the House of Representatives subcommittee on Regulatory Reform, Commercial & Antitrust Law, US Airways (AMW)/(USA) Executive VP Corporate & Government Affairs, Stephen Johnson said, “We help our customers by this merger. Second, we help our employees.” He explained that US Airways (AMW)/(USA) pays its workers less than Delta Air Lines (DAL) and United Airlines (UAL) because it lacks the scale of those competitors. “By merging, we can pay our employees like (DAL) and (UAL),” he said.
(AAL) Senior VP & General Counsel, Gary Kennedy told the panel that the merger will “bring substantial benefits to the traveling public. The combined airline will offer new routings for our passengers in thousands of additional markets.”
Johnson rejected the notion, expressed by some lawmakers, that the merger (expected to close in the third quarter) would restrict competition. “After this merger, this will be a very, very competitive industry,” he said. “There will be four airlines [the new (AAL), (UAL), (DAL) and (SWA)] with less than <25% market share each with a national network.” He noted competition will also be provided by Alaska Airlines (ASA), JetBlue Airways (JBL) and “fast-growing” low-cost carriers (LCC)s Spirit Airlines (SPR), Allegiant Air (WJE), and Virgin America (VUS).
While some members of the subcommittee raised concerns about the merger, criticism from lawmakers was relatively muted. Subcommittee Chairman Spencer Bachus (Repubican-Alabama) said, “I can’t recall a merger of airlines that had fewer [overlapping routes] than this. I’ve never seen more favorable support from employees, from unions” for a major airline merger.
With the Delta (DAL) - Northwest Airlines (NWA) and United (UAL) - Continental Airlines (CAL) mergers approved by the USA Department of Justice in recent years, it is hard to justify opposing US Airways (AMW)/(USA)-American (AAL), he said. “You could have stopped the mergers before (UAL) - (CAL) and (DAL) - (NWA),” Bachus explained. “But you didn’t, and so you’d have carriers with distinct advantages if you don’t let this one go through.”
SEE ATTACHED - - "USA-2013-02-MERGER-A/B/C.
March 2013: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) flight attendants (CA) have ratified a new contract that provides immediate pay increases and includes support for the American Airlines (AAL) - (AMW)/(USA) merger.
(AMW)/(USA)’s 6,800 flight attendants (CA) are represented by the Association of Flight Attendants (AFA).
According to an (AMW)/(USA) statement, the new contract “opens four-party negotiations with (AAL)’s flight attendant (CA) union and airline representatives, an initial step in reaching a combined collective bargaining agreement.”
The new contract specifies negotiations to begin within 30 days between airline officials; the (AFA) and the union representing (AAL) flight attendants (CA); and the Association of Professional Flight Attendants. “The talks would establish protocols for reaching a combined collective bargaining agreement once the merger of US Airways (AMW)/(USA) and American Airlines (AAL), announced on February 14, is closed.”
The merger, which is subject to regulatory agency and bankruptcy court approvals, is expected to close by the third quarter.
(AMW)/(USA) Chairman & (CEO), Doug Parker said, “This merger will create a stronger company, with the path to improved compensation and benefits and greater long-term opportunities for all our employees.”
USA airline consolidation is complete. Just in case you have been living in a cave recently, there will now be only three USA network airlines by this fall (regulatory clearance is expected in the third quarter (Q3) 2013): (AAL), which will marginally become the world’s largest airline, United Airlines (UAL) and Delta Air Lines (DAL). In terms of capacity, these three, plus Southwest Airlines (SWA) will dominate 90% of the USA domestic seats.
Outside of the combined carrier’s 10 recognized hubs and focus airports (in order of size — Dallas/Fort Worth, Charlotte, Miami, Chicago O’Hare, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Washington National, Los Angeles, New York La Guardia and New York (JFK)), which will represent nearly 60% of the new airline’s weekly seat capacity, a host of second tier airports will be jostling to maintain their based airplanes and gate space with the new (AAL). At the largest of these airports, Boston Logan, US Airways (AMW)/(USA) is the #3 operator ((AAL) is fifth) behind JetBlue Airways (JBL) and Delta (DAL), but the new united carrier will jump to second place with 23% of all seats, and will be more than double the size of (UAL) in fourth spot, and four times larger than (SWA).
The standing for the conjoined airline will improve even more markedly at San Francisco, where pre-merger (AAL) is in fifth spot ((AMW)/(USA) is 6th), lagging the (UAL) hub, (DAL), Virgin America (VUS) and (SWA). After the merger is finalized, (AAL) will barge its way into second place, still only one-fifth the size of (UAL), but commanding 10% of all seats from the Californian airport. Looking at low-cost dominated Fort Lauderdale, US Airways (AMW)/(USA) held the lowly position of sixth ((AAL) was seventh). However, the merged entity will become the largest network carrier at the Florida airport, but will still trail JetBlue (JBL), Spirit Airlines (SPR) and (SWA).
Network overlap is very limited, since the two airlines only compete on 12 of their 900 amalgamated routes, which is one reason that many industry observers feel the merger will be viewed far more favorably than when US Airways (AMW)/(USA) tried to tie the knot with (DAL) in 2006. As (AMW)/(USA) is expected to leave the Star (SAL) Alliance, and the combined carrier will join the Oneworld (ONW) Alliance, the fact that Heathrow will become (AAL)’s number one international port-of-call, is significant. In the process, the new (AAL) will become the largest USA network airline at the London airport, boasting an additional +3,800 weekly seats than its nearest rival (UAL). The tie-up is also anticipated to see Oneworld (ONW) Alliance’s global market share rise from 26% to 34%.
With one exception, of all the remaining top 12 routes, either (AAL) or (AMW)/(USA) was already the leading network airline across all the above destinations, so the fused company will further consolidate its dominance in these markets. It is as at Cancun, where it will leapfrog (UAL) to become top dog, and at the same time hold a 40% advantage over its rival in terms of seats, and become more than four times bigger than (DAL).
The new company will offer flights to 336 destinations (218 domestic, 118 international) in 56 countries. However, the merger will see (AAL) return to Belgium (it last cancelled its New York (JFK) flights on 6 November 2012) and see new operations at both Tel Aviv and Amsterdam, neither of which it currently serves, but (AMW)/(USA) does fly both daily from Philadelphia.
The biggest country market beneficiaries of the deal are Germany, Brazil and Jamaica. While for pre-merger (AAL), Germany is only its 27th largest country market in its portfolio, it is US Airways (AMW)/(USA)’s #2, which has pushed the nation up to sixth place when both airlines come together. Roles are reversed when it comes to Brazil, which is only the 16th biggest country market for (AMW)/(USA), but for its merger partner (AAL) was rated as third most significant, resulting in Brazil taking the third spot overall. Two country markets now inside the top 12 (namely Venezuela and Japan) were previously not even served by (AMW)/(USA). Only time will tell whether the regulators will have a significant impact on these markets when they make their recommendations later in the year.
The expanded network offered by the pending (AAL)/US Airways (AMW)/(USA) merger will drive most of the efficiencies and synergies generated by the combination, the two carriers told Congress.
Testifying before the USA Senate Judiciary Committee, (AAL) Chairman, President & (CEO), Tom Horton and (AMW)/(USA) Chairman & (CEO), Doug Parker said the combined network will enable the new American to compete against Delta Air Lines (DAL) and United Airlines (UAL) more effectively than either can on a standalone basis.
Merger synergies will come “primarily” from “revenue generated by allowing customers access to more markets than either airline could serve independently,” Parker said. Tapped to be (CEO) of the new American, Parker assured Senators that the combined airline has no intention of reducing service. “This merger is about putting together two networks that are highly complementary and not reducing service,” he said. “The value in this merger is in flying everywhere [both airlines] fly today.”
Horton noted that American now serves 240 destinations but post-merger will reach 340 destinations. “Those are just more points we can serve and will create more traffic flow,” he said. “This is creating enhanced competition in the USA. Today, you have two large global carriers in United (UAL) and Delta (DAL), and the new American provides a counterbalance to that.” He noted that American and (AMW)/(USA) only compete directly on 12 routes.
Horton said his company’s Chapter 11 bankruptcy restructuring has been fruitful: “(AAL) has embarked on a very successful restructuring here to reduce our costs and debt. Independent of a merger, it would have been strong and vibrant, but [merged with (AMW)/(USA)] it will just be that much stronger and more vibrant.”
In written testimony submitted to the Senate, Parker and Horton jointly stated that American’s Chapter 11 bankruptcy restructuring, while enabling (AAL) to pare down its cost structure, “did not address the fundamental network issue that was enabling competitors to win away important business. In particular, (AMW)/(USA) will fill American’s and the Oneworld (ONW) Alliance’s critical network gaps in the northeastern and southeastern United States. Likewise, (AAL) will fill (AMW)/(USA)’s network gaps in the central United States. Expanding our network is the motivation for bringing these airlines together.”
(AAL) has a new purchase and leaseback agreement with (AIG) subsidiary, International Lease Finance Corporation (ILFC) for 15 737-800s and one 777-300ER. The 777-300ER will be delivered later this month, and delivery of the new 737-800s will be completed by December 2014. The leasing agreement comes following the recently announced merger between (AAL) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA).
April 2013: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) has posted a record net profit for the 2013 first quarter and said its planned merger with American Airlines (AAL) is on track to be completed in the third quarter. The new company will generate more than >$1 billion of revenue and cost synergies by 2015.
(AAL) parent company, the AMR Corporation, reported its first profitable first quarter in six years, though the company's +$8 million net profit did not include costs associated with bankruptcy restructuring or expenses related to its pending merger with US Airways (AMW)/(USA).
(AMR) reported total revenue of $6.1 billion for the first three months of 2013, the highest first quarter revenue in company history. Reorganization and other special expenses totaled $349 million. (AMR) Chairman, Tom Horton said the company's four consecutive quarterly operating profit is proof that (AAL) is on the right track to restoring its brand. "For the first time in six years, we produced a first quarter profit, excluding reorganization items and special charges, and our fourth consecutive quarterly operating profit," said Horton. "We have raised revenues and built a competitive cost structure and sound foundation for the future. We're investing in hundreds of new airplanes and industry-leading products and have renewed our iconic "American" brand. Looking forward, our pending merger with our partners at US Airways (AMW)/(USA) positions (AAL) to be the world's leading airline."
The merged American Airlines (AAL) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) will create an airline with the best domestic feed of the USA’s three mega-carriers and will make Oneworld (ONW) the strongest of the global alliances, (AMW)/(USA) President, Scott Kirby said.
(AAL) took delivery of 12 new airplanes in the first quarter, becoming the first USA airline to launch commercial service on the 777-300ER in January. Over the past year, (AAL) has taken delivery of a combined 36 new 737-800s and 777-300ERs.
(AMR) filed its plan of reorganization earlier this month, and is awaiting a bankruptcy court hearing to consider approval of its plan in June. (AAL)'s anticipated merger with (AMW)/(USA) took another step forward this month as well, with (AMR) filing its registration statement for the merger with the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC).
Star (SAL) Alliance (CEO), Mark Schwab is in talks with US Airways (AMW)/(USA) management about the carrier’s exit from the Star (SAL) Alliance after the merger with American Airlines (AAL) is completed later this year.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) has received (FAA) certification on its wide body A330 airplanes for SafeRoute, a set of four flight deck applications that will provide enhanced operational safety and efficiency in all phases of flight as part of the (FAA)’s NextGen implementation program.
(AMW)/(USA), which said it is the first airline to receive certification for the combination of all four of these applications, is in partnership with (ACSS), an L-3 Communications & Thales Company (THL). “The certified SafeRoute suite of applications from (ACSS) that (AMW)/(USA) will install on its A330s uses Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) technology, which provides pilots (FC) with more precise position information of the operating airplanes and other airplane traffic and is a cornerstone technology for the (FAA)’s NextGen airspace redesign program. It also includes interval management, in-trail procedures, cockpit display of traffic information to assist in visual separation and surface area movement management,” (AMW)/(USA) said.
May 2013: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) US Airways (AMW)/(USA) begins daily, summer service Philadelphia - Shannon 757-200 service through September 6.
(AMW)/(USA) mechanics (MT) filed for election May 7 with the National Mediation Board to have 4,000 workers join the International Brotherhood of Teamsters.
June 2013: 2 A321-211s (5644, N154UW; 5659, N155UW), ex-(D-AVZS & AVZV).
July 2013: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) earned net income of +$287 million in the second quarter, which it expects to be its last full reporting period as an independent carrier.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) shareholders have approved the pending merger with American Airlines (AAL), a step that moves it closer to becoming the largest carrier in the world. (AMW)/(USA) (CEO), Doug Parker announced the approval at the airline's annual meeting of stockholders on Friday July 12th. "The landscape has changed as other mergers have taken place,'' said Parker, who will be the (CEO) of the newly merged carrier.
The union of Northwest (NWA) and Delta (DAL) in 2008, United (UAL) and Continental (CAL) in 2010, plus Southwest (SWA) and AirTran (CQT) in 2011 "created three airlines that are larger than US Airways (AMW)/(USA) and made it very difficult for airlines like (AMW)/(USA) and (AAL) to compete with our relatively smaller network. The merger of (AMW)/(USA) and (AAL) eliminates this competitive disadvantage.''
The merger is expected to close by the fall, and will mark the last significant merger among USA-based airlines. But before the deal is finalized, it must first clear a few more hurdles. Creditors for (AAL), which has been under bankruptcy protection since November 2011, are voting on (AAL)'s reorganization plan. Voting must conclude by July 29. If it gets the OK, the bankruptcy court is scheduled to hold a hearing to review the plan on August 15.
If the court signs off on the plan, the last step is for the Department of Justice to give its approval, if it determines that the newly combined carrier doesn't violate USA trust laws.
(AMW)/(USA) shareholders will own 28% of the new American, while American Airlines (AAL) creditors and shareholders will have the remaining 72%. Once the merger is closed, it will take another 18 to 24 months for the newly merged airline to gets its air operations certificate (AOC) from the Department of Transportation to operate as a single airline and for it to fully integrate its reservations systems, fleets and other components.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) and American (AAL) currently have overlapping service on only 12 routes, but Parker acknowledged that some of their competitors have said that the two airlines should give up landing and departure slots at Reagan National Airport near Washington, DC, before their union is approved.
European antitrust (ATI) regulators will rule on the merger between American Airlines (AAL) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) by August 6.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) has appointed Christine Kelly Singley to Managing Director, Corporate Communications. Singley joins (AMW)/(USA) from Delta Air Lines (DAL), where she oversaw the company’s executive, international, operational and internal communications. She will play a key role in combining the US Airways (AMW)/(USA) and American Airlines (AAL) Communications departments to support the new airline.
2 A321-211s (5684, N156UW; 5696, N157UW), ex-(D-AZAB & D-AZAG) deliveries.
August 2013: Antitrust officials filed a lawsuit Tuesday, August 13th blocking the proposed $11 billion merger between US Airways (AMW)/(USA) and American Airlines (AAL)’s parent company, the (AMR) Corporation, saying the deal would hurt consumers by leading to higher fare prices and fees.
The action puts the brakes on a merger that would have created the world’s largest commercial air carrier and would have put 86% of USA air travel in the hands of four big airlines. It was worry over the latter, and the potential for the new airline to dominate some markets, that spurred this lawsuit.
The civil suit was filed by the Department of Justice (DoJ), six State Attorneys General and the District of Columbia. “By challenging this merger, the (DoJ) is saying that the American people deserve better,” Attorney General, Eric Holder Jr said. “This transaction would result in consumers paying the price — in higher airfares, higher fees and fewer choices.”
(AMW)/(USA) and the parent company for (AAL), the (AMR) Corporation said they would fight the lawsuit in court rather than seek a compromise that might lead to a settlement. “Integrating the complementary networks of (AAL) and (AMW)/(USA) to benefit passengers is the motivation for bringing these airlines together. Blocking this pro-competitive merger will deny customers access to a broader airline network that gives them more choices,” a joint statement from the two airlines said. “This complaint is long on theater, and it’s short on facts that connect the merger to all the harm that they’re worried about,” said a senior official for the airlines. “They never address that, and that’s the thing they have to prove in court. They need to prove that this merger is going to make things worse from a consumer-passenger perspective. Where is that? That’s not in there.”
The official said the lawsuit could be litigated quickly and that the merger, which had been planned in the third quarter, still could be achieved by year’s end. The federal government concluded that (AAL) and (AMW)/(USA) compete directly on more than >1,000 routes, representing business worth tens of billions of dollars in annual revenue. Officials determined that erasing this competition would raise airfares. “If this merger goes forward, even a small increase in the price of airline tickets, checked bags or flight change fees would result in hundreds of millions of dollars of harm to American consumers,” said Bill Baer, the Justice Department’s top antitrust official. Baer added that both airlines have said they would succeed on their own without the merger going ahead.
The states joining the lawsuit include Texas, where (AAL) is headquartered, and Arizona, home to US Airways (AMW)/(USA). A number of the other states involved (Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Florida and Virginia, as well as the District of Columbia) have airports that serve as major hubs for the airlines.
The Justice Department singled out the effect the merger would have on Washington area fliers. The merged airline would become the dominant carrier at Reagan National Airport, officials said, controlling 69% of the takeoff and landing slots.
(AAL) and (AMW)/(USA) have vowed to “fight” the USA Department of Justice’s (DOJ) effort to derail their planned mega-merger over antitrust concerns, saying the proposed combination of the two carriers is “pro-competitive” and good for consumers.
The carriers had not anticipated problems with (DOJ)’s antitrust review, particularly considering the department’s approval of other major USA airline mergers in recent years. “We believe that the (DOJ) is wrong in its assessment of our merger. Integrating the complementary networks of (AAL) and (AMW)/(USA) to benefit passengers is the motivation for bringing these airlines together. Blocking this pro-competitive merger will deny customers access to a broader airline network that gives them more choices.”
The airlines added that the merger “provides the best outcome for [American’s] restructuring.” American (AAL) has been operating under Chapter 11 since November 2011 and had planned to emerge from bankruptcy protection and merge with US Airways (AMW)/(USA) simultaneously. In its lawsuit, the (DOJ) argued that American “is fully capable” of emerging from Chapter 11 “on its own” as a strong competitor in the US airline industry.
(AAL) and (AMW)/(USA) stated, “The widespread support from the employees and financial stakeholders of both airlines underscores the fact that this is the best path forward for both airlines and the customers and communities we serve. We will mount a vigorous defense and pursue all legal options in order to achieve this merger and deliver the benefits of the new American to our customers and communities as soon as possible.”
American Airlines (AAL) parent, the (AMR) Corporation said its creditors and shareholders have “overwhelmingly” accepted the company’s reorganization plan, which is “another important milestone toward our launch of the new American,” (AMR) Chairman, President & (CEO), Tom Horton said.
According to (AMR), of the eight creditor classes entitled to vote, at least 88% of the ballots received and tabulated in each class, representing more than >97% of the claims value voting in each class, were voted in favor of the plan. Additionally, more than >99% of the shares tabulated for the class of (AMR) stockholders voted to accept the plan.
(AMR) said the final voting results for the plan “will be certified and filed with the USA Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York in advance of the confirmation hearing on August 15, 2013. The effective date of the plan and American (AAL)’s Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection emergence are expected to occur simultaneously with the closing of the merger with US Airways (AMW)/(USA). The merger is expected to close in the third quarter.”
(AAL) filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in November 2011. The two companies received court approval for the merger in March. In July, (AMW)/(USA)’s shareholders approved the merger.
The European Commission (EC) has approved the American Airlines (AAL)-US Airways (AMW)/(USA) merger, the two airlines said. “This represents one of the final milestones on our path to becoming the new American Airlines,” (AMR) Chairman, President & (CEO), Tom Horton said. “The new American will benefit customers in the United States, Europe and across the world by enhancing connectivity within the Oneworld (ONW) alliance and creating more options for travel both domestically and internationally,” said Doug Parker, Chairman & (CEO) of US Airways (AMW)/(USA), and incoming (CEO) of the combined company.
(AAL) filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in November 2011. The two companies received court approval for the merger in March. In July, US Airways (AMW)/(USA)’s shareholders approved the merger.
Headquartered in Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas, the new American is expected to offer more than >6,700 daily flights to 336 destinations in 56 countries. Together, American Airlines (AAL) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) are expected to operate a mainline fleet of almost 950 airplanes and employ more than >100,000 workers worldwide.
The merger is subject to regulatory approvals, other customary closing conditions and confirmation of (AMR)’s plan of reorganization by the USA Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York.
The merger is expected to close in the third quarter.
Later, A USA federal bankruptcy judge declined to rule on whether to approve (AAL)’s plan to emerge from Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection, citing the lawsuit filed earlier in the week by the USA (DOJ) that seeks to prevent (AAL)’s planned merger with US Airways (AMW)/(USA).
The merger is the central component of (AAL) parent, the (AMR) Corporation’s plan to emerge from Chapter 11, which the company entered in November 2011. Before the (DOJ) unexpectedly moved this week to block the merger on antitrust grounds, a hearing Thursday in a federal bankruptcy court in New York was anticipated by (AAL) as perhaps the final step in its Chapter 11 restructuring.
But according to multiple media reports from the New York courtroom, bankruptcy judge Sean Lane said he has “lingering doubts” about (AMR)’s merger-centered reorganization plan, given the (DOJ)’s lawsuit. The judge asked (AAL)’s lawyers and other relevant parties to file briefs by August 23 explaining how Lane should move forward on the reorganization plan in light of the (DOJ) lawsuit. Lane scheduled a follow-up bankruptcy court hearing for August 29.
Later in the month, US Airways (AMW)/(UAS) and American Airlines (AAL) continued their efforts to push for a November trial to decide the USA Department of Justice’s (DOJ) antitrust lawsuit against the proposed (AMW)/(USA)-(AAL) merger, while the (DOJ) is asking for the start of the trial to be put off until next year. “Based on the (DOJ) merger cases litigated to a decision since 2001, the average time from the (DOJ)’s complaint to trial is 70 days,” (AMW)/(USA) and (AAL) said. The (DOJ)’s lawsuit seeking to stop the merger was filed August 13.
“We are eager to show that the (DOJ)’s action would deny millions of customers access to a more competitive airline that will offer customers what they want, delivering significant benefits to consumers, communities and employees,” (AMW)/(USA) Chairman & (CEO), Doug Parker, the designated (CEO) of the proposed combined (AMW)/(USA)/(AAL), said. “This merger is the foundation of American (AAL)’s plan to exit bankruptcy and is the cornerstone of (AAL)’s and (AMW)/(USA)’s plan to form a more competitive and cost-effective airline to take on the country's largest air carriers and a number of fast-growing low-cost carriers (LCC)s.”
The (DOJ) has proposed starting the trial February 10, 2014, which would be just four days short of a full year since (AAL) and (AMW)/(USA) announced their planned mega-merger. However, the federal judge assigned to the (DOJ)-(AAL)/(AMW)/(USA) case, Colleen Kollar-Kotelly, has notified the parties that she has a criminal trial slated to start January 14 that is expected to last as long as eight weeks, "The Dallas Morning News" reported.
(AAL) and (AMW)/(USA) said the (DOJ)’s proposed February 2014 start for the trial is “unreasonable,” particularly since (AAL) parent, the (AMR) Corporation’s plan to emerge from Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection hinges on the merger. (AMR) has been in Chapter 11 since November 2011 and, prior to the (DOJ)’s unexpected lawsuit, had hoped to simultaneously emerge from bankruptcy protection and merge with (AMW)/(USA) in the current quarter.
A trial date for the antitrust case could be set by the end of this week.
(AAL) is separately arguing that a (USA) bankruptcy court can move forward and approve the (AMR)’s merger-centered restructuring plan even before the (DOJ) antitrust matter is resolved. Bankruptcy judge Sean Lane has expressed reservations about approving the restructuring plan before the antitrust case is decided, but (AAL) said approval would allow the merger to happen without delay if and when it and (AMW)/(USA) win the lawsuit.
The following is from (ATW) Editor, Karen Walker's Blog:
"THE (DOJ)’s ANTITRUST LAWSUIT AGAINST THE AMERICAN (AAL)-US Airways (AMW)/(USA) MERGER IS PREPOSTEROUS!"
A few quick takes on today’s shock announcement by the USA (DOJ) that it has filed a lawsuit to block the proposed merger of (AAL) and (AMW)/(USA).
Let’s start by saying it is preposterous!
FIRST point: Reading the (DOJ) announcement and comments made by Attorney General, Eric Holder and Assistant Attorney General, Antitrust Division, Bill Baer, I note the reference to the “more than >$70 billion [spent] on airfare for travel throughout the United States” by USA consumers and that “the merger is likely to result in higher ancillary fees, such as fees charged for checked bags and flight changes. In recent years, the airlines have introduced fees for those services, which were previously included in the price of a ticket. These fees have become huge profit centers for the airlines.”
There is no mention, however, of the high and ever-increasing taxes, fees and security charges that the USA government loads on airlines and which it works to keep hidden from the consumer.
Huge profits centers? (IATA) expects the world’s airlines to make a total net profit of +$10.6 billion this year, which equates to a threadbare profit margin of 1.6%. North American airlines collectively are expected to account for most of that $3.6 billion profit, but again, the margin is razor thin. Without ancillary revenues, this would quickly reverse into losses and the USA consumer would have fewer airlines and less choice. (AAL) would hardly have gone into Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection if it were fatly profitable.
SECOND point: The (DOJ) makes much of the merged airline dominating Washington Reagan National Airport controlling 69% of the take-off and landing slots at (DCA) and having a monopoly on 63% of the nonstop routes out of National. “By allowing one airline to control that many slots, the merger will prevent other airlines, including low-fare carriers (LCC)s like JetBlue (JBL) and Southwest (SWA) from competing at Reagan National,” the (DOJ) said.
So why not propose or mandate slot give-ups as a remedy? The (EC) did this as part of its approval of the (AAL)-(AMW)/(USA) merger, citing the need for tradeoffs such as Heathrow. This should be a negotiating position, not a block.
THIRD point: The (EC) has approved the merger. Despite the huge global network of the merged carrier, the (EC) said it did not raise competition concerns.
FOURTH point: Baer’s remark that “If this merger goes forward, even a small increase in the price of airline tickets, checked bags or flight change fees would result in hundreds of millions of dollars of harm to American consumers” is particularly troubling. What soundly-managed, successful business does harm to its customers or would make that a strategy? Only a company that has a very short-term goal to be out of business.
FIFTH point: And this, to me, is the most perplexing point and one which makes the lawsuit seem more political than soundly-based; why, if this merger is so bad for the consumer, did the (DOJ) give the go-ahead for the Delta (DAL)/Northwest (NWA), United (UAL)/Continental (CAL), and Southwest (SWA)/Air Tran (CQT) mergers?
Baer says that a US Airways (AMW)/(USA) executive described the merger as “the last major piece needed to fully rationalize the industry.”
Baer then gave his translation of this phrase, saying that “in the airline business the word ‘rationalize’ is a code word for less competition, higher costs for consumers and fewer choices."
I was at a US Airways (AMW)/(USA) briefing when the rationalized industry phrase was used; that may or may not be the same sentence that Baer was referring to, but I believe he has taken it out of context and twisted it for the (DOJ)’s purpose. It is a simple fact that the USA airline industry has, indeed, rationalized in recent years – through mergers sanctioned by the (DOJ)!
So the real issue here is where was the (DOJ)’s insight into that codeword when it approved the other mergers? And how can it get this far along the road and then say the only two remaining stand-alone airlines that could provide real competition against the other merged mega-carriers is bad for the consumer? The (DOJ)’s lawsuit contradicts its own policy.
SIXTH point: This is a preposterous move by the (DOJ)!!!
Later on August 30th, thankfully, the following transpired:
It was stated by The USA (DOJ) and lawyers for American Airlines (AAL) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) that they ALL are now starting preparations for a November trial to determine whether the carriers’ planned merger should be rejected on antitrust grounds (a much earlier court date than the (DOJ) wanted).
USA Federal Judge, Colleen Kollar-Kotelly on Friday denied the (DOJ)’s request for a March 2014 trial, saying that date is “too far off.” Instead, the airlines and the (DOJ) will meet in court on November 25, when the (DOJ)’s lawsuit seeking to stop the mega-merger will be litigated. The (DOJ)’s effort to delay the trial’s start date was fiercely opposed by the airlines, which have pushed to get to court quickly to prove the merger would not be anti-competitive, and questioned by industry observers skeptical of the (DOJ)’s assertion that it needed half a year to prepare for the trial. “If you’re the (DOJ) and you have a slam dunk case, why would you delay it?” asked Transportation Consulting President, George Hamlin, a longtime industry analyst. “If it’s a great case, as the (DOJ) says it is, why wait?”
Hamlin and others have speculated that the (DOJ) was playing a waiting game, hoping American (AAL) and (AMW)/(USA) would back away from the merger if the trial was delayed too long. The carriers originally announced their merger agreement February 14 and agreed to a December 13 termination date, if the deal isn’t closed by then. The carriers wanted to close the merger in the current quarter, a timeline that was made impossible by the (DOJ)’s surprise lawsuit.
(AAL) Chairman, President & (CEO), Tom Horton and (AMW)/(USA) Chairman & (CEO), Doug Parker “are a good distance from being frustrated and quitting,” Hamlin said, adding that the December 13 termination date “will almost undoubtedly be extended.”
The (DOJ) has emphasized in its lawsuit that it believes (AAL) can successfully emerge from Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection as a standalone carrier and (AMW)/(USA), which has been profitable in recent quarters, can continue as a viable independent operator. Former (AAL) (CEO), Robert Crandall said in a recent interview with "Bloomberg" Television that it is “not a matter of survival, it’s a matter of whether you’re going to compete effectively” with Delta Air Lines (DAL) and United Airlines (UAL), both the result of major mergers previously approved by the (DOJ).
If the merger is disallowed, (AAL) “will survive but will be a "bit player" in the industry,” Crandall said. He added that “champagne corks are popping in Chicago and Atlanta,” the headquarter cities of (UAL) and (DAL), respectively, over the (DOJ)’s attempt to block the (AMW)/(USA) - (AAL) combination.
Hamlin said (UAL) and (DAL) are beneficiaries as long as the merger is delayed, both because a third major international airline of similar size is kept out of the market and “confusion” over the status of the merger could hurt (AMW)/(USA) and (AAL)’s ticket sales.
According to FAPA.aero, (AMW)/(USA) pilot (FC) application window is open. 39 (FC) were hired in January, 30 in February, and 9 in March. Their recruiters will be attending the FAPA.aero (FC) Job Fair in Chicago in October.
September 2013: The following is the (ATW) magazine editorial by Karen Walker, Editor:
- - - On February 14, US Airways (AMW)/(USA) and American Airlines (AAL) announced their Valentine’s pact to merge. On August 13, two days before a bankruptcy court was expected to clear (AAL)’s Chapter 11 exit plan that includes the merger proposal, the USA (DOJ) made its move with all the drama of a preacher asking, “does anyone here present know of any legal impediment to this marriage?”
Attorney General, Eric Holder stood up and waved a 56-page antitrust lawsuit. Rich Parker, who will be the lead attorney representing the airlines in court, said the (DOJ) “got this one wrong; they got this one very wrong.” (ATW) concurs.
From what the (DOJ) has revealed so far about why it is seeking to block this merger, the lawsuit would seem to be based on a scattergun approach. But while many of the issues raised are crowd (and congressional) pleasers, they do not appear to be antitrust matters. Much is made of ancillary fees (which are generally unpopular and which have become much more prominent since the last three major USA airline merger deals were approved. But popularity is not an antitrust requirement. Ancillary fees are a business tool used by most airlines these days) necessary to stay out of the red and also providing the flexibility of pay-for options to customers. They would not be unique to a merged (AAL) - (AMW)/(USA), nor would their practice be stopped if this merger is blocked.
Another baffling red herring in the (DOJ) document is repeated quotes from (AMW)/(USA) executives that are neither dated nor put into context, but seek to paint management as horned predators focused on profit and whose motivation for the merger is “to harm American consumers.” Responsible executives work to ensure their company’s profitability, even if it amounts to a threadbare 1.6% profit margin that (IATA) expects the world’s airlines to make this year. Without financial health and good service to its customers, airlines, like any other business, disappear and the passenger ends up with less choice and less competition.
The (DOJ) makes much of the merged airline dominating Washington National Airport controlling 69% of the take-off and landing slots at (DCA) and having a monopoly on 63% of the nonstop routes out of National. This, however, is a negotiating position, not a block. The European Commission (EC) approved the merger, saying it did not raise competition concerns after agreement was reached on slot giveups at London Heathrow.
Most perplexing of all, however, is why the (DOJ) wants to slam on the brakes now, after sanctioning the mergers of Delta (DAL)/Northwest (NWA), United (UAL)/Continental (CAL), and Southwest (SWA)/Air Tran (CQT). The (DOJ)’s lawsuit contradicts its own policy. Worse, to do a U-turn, prevents the only two remaining stand-alone airlines from providing real competition against the other merged mega-carriers. This far down the road of USA airline rationalization, it’s anticompetitive not to permit the marketplace to take its natural course. (AAL) and (AMW)/(USA) should not be penalized for being last to the altar.
The only logical conclusion that can be drawn from the (DOJ)’s action is that it is having a mea culpa moment about industry rationalization. So if a federal court dismisses the lawsuit, Holder can again hold up his hands and say, “we tried; don’t blame us.”
The airlines’ lawyers say they are looking forward to their day in court and to demonstrating why their merger is pro-competitive and good for consumers. Even by past USA airline merger standards, this one is huge and would create the world’s largest carrier. Which is why, frustrating and costly as it is for American (AAL) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) to have the merger transaction delayed, a court hearing is ultimately the best way forward. A public airing of the facts will permit them to refute the (DOJ)’s allegations and proceed with business on the basis of case made. - - -
Later, USA bankruptcy judge, Sean Lane approved American Airlines (AAL) parent, the (AMR) Corporation’s plan to emerge from Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. However, the approval is contingent upon the resolution of the USA Department of Justice’s (DOJ) lawsuit seeking to block the American (AAL)-US Airways (AMW)/(USA) merger.
(AMR)’s reorganization plan is centered around the merger, which is on hold pending a federal antitrust trial pitting the (DOJ) against the airlines. That trial is scheduled to start November 25.
According to multiple media reports from the New York court room, Lane, who had delayed his ruling, said he can only determine whether the plan to emerge from Chapter 11 is “feasible,” not whether the merger will happen. (AAL) and (AMW)/(USA) had pushed Lane to clear the reorganization plan, arguing that it would allow the merger to be concluded quickly if and when the carriers prevail in court over the (DOJ) or reach a settlement with the (DOJ).
The USA Department of Justice’s lawsuit against the proposed merger of American Airlines (AAL) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) is based on faulty reasoning, the head of (IATA) (ITA) told the Wings Club in New York on September 19th.
In his address, (IATA) Director General & (CEO), Tony Tyler said, “I am not an expert on USA antitrust policy, but I do know something about the airline industry and I have to agree with those in the investment community and elsewhere who have found the (DOJ)’s arguments to be unpersuasive. I can easily point to several examples of faulty reasoning.”
He said that the (DOJ) seems to believe a larger number of unhealthy airlines is better than a smaller number of healthy ones. He cited a (DOJ) statement that in 2005 there were nine major airlines and, if the merger were approved, there would be only four. Tyler commented, “Left unsaid is the fact that in 2005, four of those airlines either entered bankruptcy or were already undergoing a Chapter 11 reorganization.”
Answering reporter questions in a session that followed the address, Tyler said, “I think when all the issues are aired, when it comes to trial, clearly the airlines will put their views forward and I have no doubt that common sense will prevail and the merger will go ahead. It seems to me extraordinary that there could be any other outcome.”
A November 25 date has been set for the lawsuit trial, even though the (DOJ) sought to push the hearing to March 2014.
The (DOJ)’s August 13 announcement that it intended to challenge the merger proposal in court shocked the industry. The (DOJ) had previously approved the mega-mergers between Delta Air Lines (DAL) and Northwest Airlines (NWA), United Airlines (UAL), and Continental Airlines (CAL), plus Southwest Airlines (SWA) and AirTran Airways (CQT). But the (DOJ) said it believed the (AMW)/(USA) - (AAL) combination would be harmful to consumers.
Tyler’s (DOJ) comments in his Wings Club address were part of a larger attack on government intervention and micro-management of how airlines do business. “Our biggest challenge comes from governments that are engaging in what I would broadly describe as regulatory backtracking,” he said. “The airline industry may be deregulated to the extent that carriers are permitted to set their fares according to demand. But regulators aim to design the details of competition in a manner that is wholly at odds with how other industries are treated and with the workings of the free market. “In particular, they appear determined to hold commercial aviation to a different business standard than they impose on any other form of transportation or consumer facing activities.”
American Airlines (AAL) and US Airways (AMR)/(USA) have each agreed to extend the outside date at which either party may terminate the previously announced agreement and plan of merger, in light of the trial schedule surrounding litigation with the USA (DoJ).
In a joint statement, (AMR) Corporation Chairman, President & (CEO), Tom Horton and (AMW)/(USA) Chairman & (CEO), Doug Parker said, “The boards and management teams of (AMR) and (AMW)/(USA) remain committed to completing this combination to create the new American (AAL)/(AMW)/(USA), and the extension of this outside date is a reflection of this commitment. Our focus is on mounting a vigorous defense and winning our court case so the new (AAL)/(AMW)/(USA) can enhance competition, provide better service to our customers and create more opportunities for our employees.”
According to an (AMR) statement, the amended merger agreement “extends the date on which either (AMR) or US Airways (AMW)/(USA) may terminate the merger agreement from December 17, 2013 to the later date of January 18, 2014, or, if the court enters an order on or before January 17, 2014 in favor of (AAL) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA), on the 15th day following the entry of such order. In the event of an unfavorable ruling by the court, (AMR) or (AMW)/(USA) may terminate the merger agreement five days after the court enters a final, but appealable, order permanently enjoining the merger.”
FAPA . . . Future & Active Pilot Advisors.
Guiding pilots (FC) to their professional goals.
See FAPA.aero: Pilot (FC) Career Conferences & Job Fairs
Note: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) flight crew (FC) recruiting personnel will be at the next Pilot Job Fair which will be held in Chicago next month.
October 2013: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) posted a third-quarter net income of +$216 million, down -11.9% from +$245 million in the year-ago period.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA), American Airlines (AAL) and the USA Department of Justice (DOJ) have agreed to meet with a mediator in an effort to settle the (DOJ)’s antitrust lawsuit seeking to block the carriers’ proposed merger. According to "The Dallas Morning News" and other media reports, a brief filing in a USA federal court in Washington DC stated, “The parties have agreed to a mediator suggested by the court.” There are no other details given at this time regarding the mediator.
The (DOJ)’s antitrust lawsuit, attempting to stop the merger is scheduled for a November 25 trial; the acceptance of a court-suggested mediator by the sides does not change that schedule. But the (DOJ) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA)/(AAL) lawyers have agreed to meet via a mediator to see if a settlement can possibly be worked out prior to the trial. The potential divestment of slots at Washington National Airport (DCA) is likely to be a key point of talks with the mediator.
The (DOJ) maintains (AAL) can emerge from Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection successfully as a standalone carrier. That view may have been boosted by (AAL)’s strong third-quarter net profit, but (AAL) has said the merger is needed to enable it to have the scale to compete with Delta Air Lines (DAL) and United Airlines (UAL), both of which are the result of major mergers previously approved by the (DOJ).
Southwest Airlines (SWA) has no official stance on the American Airlines (AAL) - US Airways (AMW)/(USA) merger, but (SWA) wants to have a stronger presence at Washington National Airport (DCA) and wants (AAL) - (AMW)/(USA) to divest Washington National slots.
US Airways (AMW)/USA) is using deliveries of new A321s and A330s to flex its schedules and provide more capacity in specific markets based on seasonal shifts in demand.
(AMW)/(USA) plans to upgauge some flights to St Maarten from its Charlotte and Philadelphia hubs for the first time this winter. Cities such as Cancun and Punta Cana have seen the larger airplanes in the past.
(AMW)/(USA) has already added three A330-200s to its fleet this year and plans to take another two for a total of 12 by the end of the year, according to its most recent fleet plan. It also has nine A330-300s and 10 767-200ERs.
Additional A321s are allowing US Airways to place more capacity on trunk routes. These airplanes can fly between hubs and cities such as New York and ones in Florida, providing more capacity to passengers connecting from the carrier’s many spokes throughout the eastern USA. The A321s are replacing older 737-400s, which are being retired.
(AMW)/(USA) has added 13 A321s year-to-date and plans to take another three for a total of 91 by the end of December. It plans to remove 18 737-400s, leaving just 14 in its fleet by the end of the year.
Overall, (AMW)/(USA)’s combined mainline and regional fleets will be down by one airframe at the end of the year. This nearly flat count makes new service difficult to add without taking capacity away from another market. US Airways will use one of its new A330s to shift its Charlotte - São Paulo Guarulhos service to a night-night schedule sometime in 2014. This requires two dedicated airplanes but will not result in an increase in capacity as an airplane sits on the ground in Brazil during the day.
November 2013: The Justice Department (DOJ) has reached a settlement to drop its opposition to the merger of American Airlines (AAL) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA), allowing the two carriers to create the world's largest airline. Under the settlement, the merged airline will relinquish 52 slot pairs at Washington Reagan National Airport (DCA) and 17 slot pairs at New York's LaGuardia Airport (LGA), as well as certain gates and related facilities at those two airports. Two gates will also be released at Boston Logan International Airport, Chicago O'Hare, Dalls Love Field, Los Angeles International and Miami International. The (DOJ) originally filed the lawsuit to block the merger, claiming the new airline would reduce competition and lead to significantly higher airfare for passengers.
"This is an important day for our customers, our people and our financial stakeholders. This agreement allows us to take the final steps in creating the new American Airlines (AAL)," said Tom Horton, Chairman & (CEO) of the (AMR) Corporation, parent company of (AAL).
Despite the divestitures of the gates and slots, the new American expects to generate more than >$1 billion annually beginning in 2015.
The settlement still needs approval from the Federal District Court and by the judge overseeing American's bankruptcy proceeding. However, American said it still expects to close the merger by mid-December.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA)’s transition to the Oneworld (ONW) Alliance from the Star (SAL) Alliance is set to happen quickly.
Summer 2014 will see US Airways (AMW)/(USA) link Philadelphia and Edinburgh, with non-stop daily flights from May 23 to October 1.
The 757 service will complement (AMW)/(USA)’s existing European destinations, including Glasgow, Dublin, Shannon, Manchester, and London Heathrow.
Edinburgh will be the airline's 19th transatlantic destination from its international gateway.
Senior VP, Marketing & Planning, Andrew Nocella, said: “This is our first opportunity to serve Scotland’s capital from our Philadelphia gateway, and we look forward to strengthening our ability to help customers explore the British Isles.” Flight 784 will depart Philadelphia at 8.50 pm, arriving in Edinburgh at 8.40 am the following day. The return flight, 785, will depart Edinburgh at 10.50 am, touching down in Philadelphia at 1.35 pm.
With the new service, US Airways (AMW)/(USA) will operate 472 weekday flights and serve 118 destinations from Philadelphia International Airport.
December 2013: American Airlines (AAL) exited Chapter 11, merged with US Airways (AMW)/(USA) and officially became the "new" American Airlines Group on Monday morning, December 9th, 2013.
The merger is expected to generate $1 billion in annual net synergies by 2015, according to the airlines.
American (AAL) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) said it will take 18 - 24 months for the carriers to receive a single air operating certificate (AOC) from the (FAA). The combined carrier will operate about 6,700 daily flights to more than >330 destinations in over >50 countries. Dallas/Fort Worth-based American Airlines Group Inc. has more than >100,000 employees globally.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) will exit the Star (SAL) Alliance on March 30, 2014, and enter the Oneworld (ONW) Alliance, of which (AAL) is a key member, on March 31, 2014.
The carriers said passengers “will begin to see enhancements to their experience in early January, including the ability to earn and redeem miles when traveling on either American Airlines (AAL) or US Airways (AMW)/(USA).” The airlines said their websites and reservations systems “will continue to operate separately until further in the integration process.”
The stock of American Airlines Group Inc will trade on the (NASDAQ) Global Select Market under the symbol “AAL.”
Tim Campbell, Senior VP Air Operations for the "new" American appointed Captain John Hale, VP Flight.
A321-231 (5899, N572UW), ex-(D-AVZZ), delivery.
January 2014: A319-112 (0885, N700UW), repainted into American Airlines (AAL) colors, with "operated by US Airways" sticker.
March 2014: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) and Brazil’s (TAM) (TPR) have both officially joined the Oneworld (ONW) alliance, greatly expanding the global airline grouping’s network in the Americas.
The two carriers exited the Star (SAL) Alliance at the end of the day on March 30 and officially began services as Oneworld (ONW) Alliance members on the morning of March 31. The alliance switch was driven by mergers: (TAM) (TPR)’s with (ONW) member (LAN) Airlines in June 2012 to form the (LATAM) Airlines Group, and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) with (ONW)’s American Airlines in December 2013.
“The addition of (TAM) (TPR) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) represents the biggest single day of growth since the (ONW) alliance started 15 years ago,” International Airlines Group (IAG) (CEO) and new Oneworld (ONW) Alliance Chairman, Willie Walsh said. “We believe it is the single biggest day of growth for any of the alliances. Brazil is one of the most important markets for all airlines. We know in Brazil, we now have a partner with an excellent network.”
(TAM) (TPR) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) add nearly 100 destinations to the (ONW) Alliance’s network; 45 operated to by (TAM) (TPR) and more than >50 operated to by US Airways (AMW)/(USA). Walsh noted the (ONW) alliance’s worldwide network now reaches 1,000 destinations.
American Airlines (AAL) (CEO), Doug Parker called the entrance of US Airways (AMW)/(USA) into the (ONW) Alliance “another crucial step towards our progress to integrating (AAL) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) into a single carrier.” He added that having the entire (LATAM) Airlines Group in the (ONW) Alliance was significant for the new (AAL), noting that (AAL) and (LATAM) code share across 150 destinations. Brazil is one the “most important” international markets served by (AAL), Parker said.
(TAM) (TPR) (CEO), Marco Bologna said the Brazilian carrier’s entrance into the (ONW) Alliance means it has become “aligned with the best airlines in terms of reach worldwide,” highlighting connectivity at (AAL)’s USA hubs, especially Miami International Airport. With (TAM) (TPR)’s entrance, (ONW) becomes “the leading alliance in Latin America,” he said.
(ONW) (CEO), Bruce Ashby noted, “As the leading airline in Latin America’s biggest economy, (TAM) (TPR)’s addition represents a significant landmark.”
Bologna added, “(TAM) (TPR) is one of the fastest growing airlines in the Americas. [By joining Oneworld (ONW)], we are taking a very important step for the future of (TAM) (TPR) and (LATAM).”
March 2014: For the second consecutive month, after 15 months of reported declines, full-time equivalent (FTE) employment at USA scheduled passenger airlines has registered a monthly increase year-over-year.
In February, USA scheduled passenger airlines employed 381,985 full-time workers, up +0.4% year-over-year, according to figures from the USA Department of Transportation’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS).
It was the third consecutive month in which full-time equivalent (FTE) jobs at USA scheduled passenger airlines increased year-over-year. The February total registers +1,571 more (FTE) jobs among USA scheduled passenger carriers than in February 2013.
Among the USA major/network carriers, year-over-year increases in February (FTE) jobs were seen at US Airways (AMW)/(USA) (up +3.6%), Alaska Airlines (ASA) (up +2.7%), American Airlines (AAL) (up +0.4%) and Delta Air Lines (DAL) (up +0.2%). United Airlines (UAL) reported losing -1.8% of its (FTE) positions year-over-year. Overall, the USA major/network carriers saw a +0.1% year-over-year increase in February (FTE) employees.
Hawaiian Airlines (HWI), a major carrier classified by (BTS) as an “other carrier” (airlines that operate within specific niche markets) reported a year-over-year February increase of +332 (FTE) positions, up +7.5%.
Overall, (FTE) positions at the major USA low-cost-carriers (LCCs) grew +0.7% year-over-year in February. Spirit Airlines (SPR) had the largest concentration of year-over-year growth, expanding its February (FTE) job count by +16.8%, to 3,534 (FTE) employees; Allegiant Air (WJE)’s monthly (FTE) job count grew as well, up +14.3% from February 2013, to 2.134 (FTE) employees. Increases also occurred at Virgin America (VUS) (up +6.7%) and JetBlue Airways (JBL) (up +4.9%). February (FTE) job declines were seen at Frontier Airlines (FRO) (down -7.4%) and Southwest Airlines (SWA) (down -1.7%).
Sun Country Airlines (SCA), a national carrier/(LCC) classified by (BTS) as an “other carrier,” registered a year-over-year February increase of +169 (FTE) positions, up +17.4%.
Ranked by (FTE) workforce, the top 10 passenger airlines for February were: United Airlines (UAL) (80,694 (FTE) employees), Delta Air Lines (DAL) (73,602), American Airlines (AAL) (59,699) (less US Airways (AMW)/(USA) - see later, Southwest (SWA) (45,091), US Airways (AMW)/(USA) (31,604), JetBlue Airways (JBL) (13,301), and Alaska Airlines (ASA) (10.192).
2 A320-231s (0055, A624AW; 0065, N624AW), 3 A321-231s (5980, N575UW; 6027, N576UW; 6035, N578UW), ex-(D-AZAP; D-AVZL & D-AVZN) and A330-243 (1502, N291AY), EX-(F-WWTX), deliveries.
April 2014: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) has joined American Airlines (AAL), British Airways (BAB), Iberia (IBE) and Finnair (FIN) in their transatlantic joint venture (JV).
As part of the joint business (established by Oneworld (ONW) global alliance partners (AAL), (BAB) and (IBE) in October 2010) the airlines can cooperate commercially on transatlantic flights. The joint venture also includes a revenue-sharing agreement in which member airlines have permission to coordinate schedules and pricing on North Atlantic routes.
Speaking on a panel at the USA Chamber of Commerce Foundation’s Annual Aviation Summit in Washington DC, International Airlines Group (IAG) (CEO), Willie Walsh said the addition of (AMW)/(USA), which merged with (AAL) at the end of 2013, provided “unmatched” capability on transatlantic routes. (BAB) is part of the (IAG) Group.
(AAL) (CEO), Doug Parker, who was a panelist with Walsh, said he was “extremely pleased with the foundation that has been established” since the merger was completed. He said the merged airline’s relationship with the Oneworld (ONW) Alliance was an important part of his plan to restore (AAL)’s position as “the best airline in the world.”
May 2014: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) has launched a code share with British Airways (BAB) after becoming an affiliate member of the Atlantic Joint Business between (BAB), American Airlines (AAL), Iberia (IBE) and Finnair (FIN). (AAL) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) closed their merger in December and earlier this year (BAB) parent the International Airlines Group (IAG) said it hoped to integrate US Airways (AMW)/(USA)’s flights into the Atlantic Joint Business.
(BAB) said (AMW)/(USA) joined the group as an affiliate member on March 31. “It will remain as such until it fully integrates with (AAL) as part of their merger to create the largest airline in the world.”
Cementing the agreement, (BAB) will add its code to nearly 40 (AMW)/(USA) destinations in North America and the Caribbean, while (AMW)/(USA) will add its designator to over 70 (BAB) destinations in Europe, Asia, and the Middle East. The code share will be introduced in two phases, which should be completed by the end of the summer.
“Our code share arrangement with (AMW)/(USA), and the addition of its extensive network to our schedule, marks another milestone in our Joint Business,” (BAB) Head of alliances, Steve Ronald said.
“(AMW)/(USA)’s entry into the Atlantic Joint Business marked a crucial step in our overall integration process, and this code share arrangement with our long term partner (BAB) is essential to the continued expansion of our combined networks,” added (AAL) Senior VP Alliances & Partnerships, Kurt Stache.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) added four European routes, all of which are seasonal, to its offering. With the longest sector being the 7,014 km service from Charlotte, North Carolina (CLT) to Barcelona (BCN), launched on May 22nd and operated daily until September; 27th as well as the shortest being inaugurated on May 23rd from Philadelphia, (PHL) to Edinburgh (EDI) at 5,390 kms and served six times weekly until September 30th, (AMW)/(USA) will face no competition on any of the four new airport pairs.
June 2014: American Airlines (AAL) plans to break ground in the next 30 days on a new integrated Flight Operations Center near its Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) headquarters.
(AAL) currently has a (DFW)-based operations center, but US Airways (AMW)/(USA)’s Flight Operations are managed from a facility in Pittsburgh. In a letter to employees, (AAL) said that while “no one will be moving from Pittsburgh for quite some time,” the plan is for all relevant employees to be working out of a unified Flight Operations Center at (DFW).
(AAL)’s current (DFW) Operations Center will close. “It became apparent that the best long-term solution is a new, state-of-the-art facility that can house all of our team members and the technology needed for our daily demands,” (AAL) told employees. “Our timeline for the new building is aggressive.” (AAL) said it will start construction of the new facility “within the next 30 days pending local approvals” and anticipates having it “move-in ready” by the 2015 third quarter.
“For many of you located in Pittsburgh, the decision to move to Dallas/Fort Worth is a life-changing one and we don’t take that lightly,” (AAL) said in the letter, adding that “change isn’t easy, but it is necessary for us to run the best operational control facility in the industry.”
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) and the International Association of Machinists & Aerospace Workers (IAM) have reached tentative agreements on contracts covering approximately 11,000 mechanic (MT) and related, fleet service, maintenance training specialist and stock clerk employees. The three-year accords provide for substantial wage hikes, significant job security improvements and maintain industry-best healthcare benefits, among many other improvements. A ratification schedule is being developed.
July 2014: US Airways (AMW)/(USA) expanded its domestic offering with two new services from Charlotte Douglas, North Carolina (CLT), both of which are flown with twice-daily operations. With the longest sector being the 1,514 km route to Oklahoma City (OKC) operated by (AMW)/(USA)’s 79Y-seat CRJ 900s, and the shortest being served by its 67-seat CRJ 700s to Tulsa, OK (TUL), (AMW/(USA) will face no competition on either of the new airport pairs.
Finnair (FIN) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) have launched code sharing on transatlantic services. (FIN)’s flight code will be added to (AMW)/(USA) flights from Charlotte to Frankfurt, Rome, Dublin, London, Manchester, Barcelona, Lisbon, Brussels, Madrid, and Paris. From Philadelphia to Frankfurt, Zurich, Venice, Munich, Rome, Dublin, London, Manchester, Lisbon, Madrid, Barcelona, Brussels, Paris, Athens, Glasgow, Shannon, Edinburgh, and Amsterdam. Also on domestic New York (JFK) service to Charlotte and Phoenix.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA) can book (FIN) flights from New York, Toronto, and Miami to Helsinki Airport and further. The (AMW)/(USA) code will be added to the (FIN) flights from Helsinki to Stockholm, Oslo, Copenhagen, Gothenburg, Oulu, Paris, Brussels, Munich, Frankfurt, Zurich, and London. Both carriers participate in the Oneworld (ONW) alliance.
The International Association of Machinists (IAM), representing mechanics (MT) and related, fleet service and maintenance training specialist work groups at US Airways (AMW)/(USA), ratified three collective bargaining agreements covering more than >11,000 employees. The agreements will remain in effect until a joint collective bargaining agreement covering 30,000 employees at the new American Airlines (AAL) has been reached.
August 2014: 6 A321-231s (6194, N584UW; 6214, N585UW; 6230, N586UW; 6236, N587UW; 6249, N911UY; 6255, N913US), deliveries.
October 2014: American Airlines (AAL) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) have unified under a single air waybill, effectively completing the combination of the cargo divisions of the merging airlines.
The carriers don’t expect to gain a single air operating certificate (AOC) from the (FAA) until next year, but cargo has become the “first Operations division at the airline to be fully integrated,” (AAL) said. The new American Airlines Cargo will generate +$800 million in annual revenue moving more than >1 billion pounds of cargo and mail per year. The integration involved combining and harmonizing 154 American (AAL) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) cargo facilities.
(AAL) Cargo President, Jim Butler said, “As of today, all booking channels are open and cargo customers have access to flights across the combined network of the world’s largest airline.”
(AAL) (COO), Robert Isom added, “Becoming one cargo organization less than a year after we legally closed our merger is a tremendous achievement.” Isom has previously emphasized that cargo will “play a significant role” in the merged airline.
April 2015: News Item A-1: American Airlines (AAL) anticipated receiving a single air operating certificate (AOC) from the USA Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) on April 8th, it said in an employee newsletter.
The (AOC) is a key step in the Fort Worth, Texas-based carrier’s merger with US Airways (AMW)/(USA), allowing it to operate its separate legacy American and legacy US Airways operations as a single carrier.
The majority of “flight, maintenance and dispatch procedures will be identical for all flights” following the issuance of the certificate. Some operating policies and procedures will remain separate as the integration continues.
US Airways (AMW)/(USA)-operated flights will continue to carry with both (AAL) and (AMW)/(USA) flight numbers until the airline moves to a single reservations system in the fourth quarter, it added.
“The approach that we’ve used is (there’s no big bang, there’s no light switch),” said Robert Isom, Chief Operating Officer (COO) of American (AAL), on the operations integration process in August 2014. “We want to have everyone trained up on both sides of the house so that our operating policies, procedures, everything that involves operating an airplane safely are all identical, mirror images at the time of single (AOC).”
The new (AOC) comes right on schedule. (AAL)’s Chief Financial Officer (CFO), Derek Kerr said last November that he anticipated the single (AOC) in the “early part of the second quarter.”
The operations changes will occur less than two weeks after (AAL) combines its AAdvantage and the US Airways (AMW)/(USA) Dividend Miles frequent flier programs on March 28th.
The next big merger milestones for (AAL) include the consolidation of its two operations centers in a new facility in Fort Worth in the third quarter and moving all of its reservations to Sabre in the fourth quarter.
American (AAL) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) closed their merger in December 2013 and began code sharing a month later.
American Airlines (AAL) and US Airways (AMW)/(USA) are now operating under a single air operating certificate (AOC) issued by the (FAA). The milestone was achieved 16 months after (AAL) emerged from Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection and merged with (AMW)/(USA).
(AAL) said that “most Flight Operations, Maintenance and Dispatch procedures will be identical for all flights. Air traffic control (ATC) communications will refer to all (AAL) and (AMW)/(USA) flights with the call sign ‘American’.”
(AAL) originally hadn’t expected to achieve a single (AOC) until late 2015. (AAL) (COO), Robert Isom said the remaining significant merger components are “moving to a single reservations system and website and combining our frontline employee workgroups.” Earlier this year, (AAL)’s pilots (FC) ratified a five-year collective bargaining agreement that brought all of the flight deck crew (FC) of (AAL) and (AMW)/(USA) under one labor contract.
(AAL) noted that “more than >110,000 employees completed hundreds of thousands of hours of training in multiple phases and more than >115,000 pages on policies and procedures were published” in order to achieve a single (AOC).
(AAL) said that “the (FAA)’s recognition of American (AAL) as a single operator does not mean change for customers, who will continue to check in for their flights on aa.com, usairways.com, or at American (AAL) or US Airways (AMW)/(USA) ticket counters until later this year when (AAL) moves to a single reservations system.”
July 2015: The last flight for US Airways (AMW)/(USA) will take place this fall, and one more name in airline history will disappear.
The farewell flight for (AMW)/(USA) will be a red-eye (Flight 434 is scheduled to leave San Francisco around 10:00 pm and land in Philadelphia after 6:00 am on October 17. The (AMW)/(USA) website will be turned off. Airport kiosks and signs will change to American Airlines (AAL).
The two airlines merged in December 2013 and decided to keep the better-known "American" name. Vestiges of the carrier will survive for some time, however, as some planes won't be repainted yet in (AAL)'s colors and logo.
In the last 10 years, mergers have eliminated Northwest (NWA), Continental (CAL) and AirTran (CQT). Before that, Pan Am (PAA), (TWA) and many smaller carriers disappeared.
American Airlines Group Inc announced the timing of the curtain call on Friday, July 10. (AAL)'s biggest challenge may be combining the computer systems of two airlines without creating the kinds of problems that have plagued United (UAL) and Continental (CAL) after they combined reservations systems in 2012. This week, all (UAL) flights were grounded and more than >1,000 were delayed after a problem that (UAL) blamed on a faulty router.
Maya Leibman, (AAL)'s Chief Information Officer (CIO), said (AAL) has built in redundancies and disaster-recovery programs in key systems. But referring to (UAL), she said, "There is no technology leader that could stand up and say with 100% certainty that nothing like this could ever happen to them."
(AAL) officials said they have hired about 1,900 airport and reservations agents and will give special training to nearly 10,000 current employees to perform the switch from the US Airways (AMW)/(USA) reservations system, called "Shares," to (AAL)'s, which is provided by Sabre. (AAL) is also reducing flights around the switchover to lighten the load on computer systems.
Customers booked on (AMW)/(USA) flights after October 17 will get a new flight number bearing American (AAL)'s AA code. That's only about 4% of all reservations in the (AAL) and (AMW)/(USA) systems, they said.
(AAL) will have more technology work to do after October. It still must combine crew-scheduling and maintenance-tracking systems. (AAL) has about 113,000 employees, including those at wholly owned regional subsidiaries such as Envoy Air.
(AAL) is the biggest airline operator in the world by passenger traffic, having surpassed (UAL) after the merger with (AMW)/(UAL).
August 2015: US Airways ((IATA) Code: US, based at Phoenix Sky Harbor) (AMW)(USA) has scheduled its last commercial flight to be operated under the "US Airways" brand-name and flight code for Friday, October 16.
Flight US1939 (so numbered to reflect the year predecessor, "All American Aviation" officially commenced operations) will operate on board an A321-200 across four sectors (Philadelphia International - Charlotte - Phoenix Sky Harbor - San Francisco, California - Philadelphia International. A special event is likely planned at each destination.
Following the flight's conclusion, all US Airways (AMW)/(USA) flights will be operated under the American Airlines ((IATA) Code: AA, based at Dallas/Fort Worth) (AAL) "AA" flight code. The move coincides with the introduction of a single, unified reservations system (one of the final steps in US Airways (AMW)/(USA)'s USD11 billion merger with (AAL).
The next milestone for the American Airlines (AAL) - US Airways (AMW)/(USA) integration is October 17 when the "US Airways" brand will be retired.
October 2015: News Item A-1: "American prepares for Res System Cutover, + Retirement of ‘US Airways’ by (ATW) Aaron Karp, October 12 2015.
American Airlines (AAL) has “spared no expense” in preparing for the October 17 cutover of the US Airways (AMW)/(USA) reservations system to (AAL)’s Sabre system, a senior executive said. “We are all completely committed to getting this right,” (AAL) Chief Information Officer (CIO), Maya Leibman said. The reservations system cutover, which is considered the last major milestone of the American (AAL)-US Airways (AMW)/(USA) integration visible to the public, will enable (AAL) to officially retire the US Airways (AMW)/(USA) brand.
Through 2016, there will still be airplanes painted in US Airways livery and employees wearing US Airways uniforms, but from October 17 flights will all operate under the “AA” code and all ticket bookings will be with “American.” All airport facilities will be branded American from October 17 as well.
Leibman acknowledged that the reservations system cutover will be “a very complex process,” leading (AAL) to do everything it can to mitigate the risk that something will go wrong. Cognizant of recent glitches that have disrupted US airlines (AMW)/(USA)’s operations, including one at (AAL) in September, (AAL) will have a 24/7 command center staffed by 1,000 people from October 14 - October 27 to immediately “triage” any problems with the reservations system, Leibman said. “One thing we don’t want to do, is let our guard down during this entire process,” she explained.
The system cutover will affect 9,000 computers in the American/US Airways system, and the most intense focus will be on US Airways’ legacy hubs in Charlotte, Phoenix, and Philadelphia. Well in advance, (AAL) reduced its flight schedule at those three airports by -11% October 17 compared to a normal autumn Saturday, easing the pressure a bit. Overall, (AAL) will operate about -200 fewer flights October 17 than on a typical October Saturday.
(AAL) said it has conducted about 1 million hours of training for around 50,000 employees in preparation for the system cutover. It has also done numerous technology tests. “We have really tested the heck out of everything,” Leibman said, adding that American is as “prepared as possible” for October 17, but is also ready to “triage as effectively as possible” if something goes wrong. “No technology leader can say with 100% certainty that nothing [will go wrong],” she said. “If they do, don’t buy a bridge from them.”
News Item A-2: "Last Flight of US Airways Evokes "Golden Age" of Air Travel" by Thom Patterson, (CNN) News, October 15, 2015.
It's the end of the line for US Airways.
The airline that started as a tiny airmail service 76 years ago is retiring as part of a 2013 merger with American Airlines (AAL). The final US Airways flight is scheduled to take off from Philadelphia on October 16.
It's a small part of a huge trend that's affecting how more than >660 million domestic air travelers fly every year.
Fourteen years ago, the USA had 10 major domestic airlines. Now, the competing major carriers have merged into four: American (AAL), Delta (DAL), Southwest (SWA), and United (UAL).
Together, they control about 87% of the domestic market, (MIT)'s International Center for Air Transportation said.
Is that a good thing for travelers looking for lower airfares? "I don't think it's bad at all," said Brett Snyder of airline industry blog, "The Cranky Flier." "Fares have come down lately. You still see these guys fighting with each other. But is there as much competition as there was? No, of course not, because there are fewer carriers."
Snyder, who spent more than a decade working for United (UAL), USAir (USA) and America West (AMW), called it "rational competition" among "smarter airlines" that know how to make a profit. "I guess from the customers' standpoint, you could argue that it would be better to have 20 tiny airlines losing money and taking you places cheap. But that's not sustainable."
Folks who think airfares are too high may be interested to know that domestic air travel is -17% cheaper in inflation-adjusted dollars than it was more than >20 years ago, according to federal statistics. But we also have to pay extra on some carriers to check bags and get seat assignments, which used to be included in the price of a ticket.
Also notable is that the Justice Department is investigating "possible unlawful coordination" of seat availability by airlines, allegedly to prop up ticket prices.
What About Services? Travelers give mixed signals about airline service. Sometimes, the feedback is good: A J.D. Power & Associates passenger survey of airlines in North America released in May showed a record high satisfaction ranking for in-flight services; boarding, deplaning and baggage; flight crew; aircraft; check-in; and reservations.
But sometimes, the feedback is not so good: The number of passenger complaints to the Department of Transportation is up.
It really is a different world now, compared with the days before the federal government deregulated the airline industry in 1978. Back then, authorities could set fares and choose routes. That made it hard for airlines to fill all the seats on every flight.
"In the old days, it seemed like there was always a seat next to you that was empty, and people took that for granted," said transportation expert, Clifford Winston of the Brookings Institution Washington think tank. "Today, you laugh and say, 'wait a minute, what kind of rat ship were they running then?' "
Are we better off now? "In the long run, yes," Winston said.
"A Golden Time"
To get a taste for air travel before deregulation, meet Captain William Compton.
In 1968, Compton began a decades long career flying for the iconic Trans World Airlines (TWA). The passenger experience on (TWA) and other major airlines "was really, really good," he recalled. "Service was fantastic. People got on the airplane with a coat and tie. The seats were wider and longer. The food was better. It was a golden time."
A lot of airlines in the old days "weren't making any money, but they were producing a great product," Compton, now retired, said recently from his Florida home.
(TWA) was an airline that pretty much showed America how to travel by airplane. It was the innovator. In 1930, it launched one of the first scheduled coast-to-coast passenger airline flights. It was among the first airlines to fly four-engine planes with pressurized cabins that could soar high above bad weather. It basically invented in-flight dining, figuring out the best way to offer every passenger a fancy meal, served with cloth napkins, tablecloths, real silverware, and china.
Some of us domestic air travelers have seen these things only on YouTube. For us, a three-course meal on a domestic flight amounts to a packet of King's Honey Roasted Peanuts, a Biscoff cookie, and a tomato juice in a plastic cup.
In the '60s and '70s, "people wanted excellent service, so they had to pay more," Compton said. "Now, people don't want to pay more, they want to pay less, which makes sense." That prompts airlines to fill every seat to keep prices low.
(TWA) didn't fare well after deregulation. Wall Street billionaire Carl Icahn bought it, took it private and sold off valuable international routes. After multiple bankruptcies, (TWA) was purchased by American Airlines (AAL) in 2001. By that time, Compton was (CEO). He and Captain Don Jacobs piloted (TWA)'s final flight, a short hop in a 155-seat MD-80 from Kansas City to St Louis.
"I remember we did a low pass across the runway, which was exciting," said Compton, now 68. "We actually made a nice touchdown landing and taxied to the gate, to be met by hundreds of employees. "It was sad in some ways, but it was a lot of fun."
US Airways' Legacy:
On Friday, US Airways' final flight will soar into the sunset, ending its tenure with nearly 6,700 daily flights, more than >100,000 employees and about 8% of USA domestic passengers.
It also leaves in its wake a few names that might sound familiar. Until 1997, US Airways was called USAir. In the 1970s, it was Allegheny. But it all started in Pittsburgh as All-American Aviation, which flew single-engine planes delivering airmail in 1939.
"Looking back to when it was Allegheny, US Airways was the local service airline that could," Snyder said. "Its legacy was being able to break out of a pack of local service airlines to pull itself up by its bootstraps and build itself into something much larger."
Snyder, who cut his teeth in the business as an intern at USAir, admits a soft spot for US Airways. Nonetheless, he said, the airline's record during the 1980s was "somewhat checkered at best" after it acquired Pacific Southwest (PSA) and Piedmont airlines.
In 2005, US Airways (USA) merged with America West (AMW), keeping the US Airways name. "Here's the reality: US Airways effectively died in 2005," Snyder said. "There's no question about it; America West took over. Despite the US Airways name sticking around, it just became a bigger America West."
Then, eight years later, US Airways' top management essentially took control of American Airlines (AAL) during their merger.
What's on the Radar?
As for the future, (AAL) says it plans to keep US Airways' big hub in Charlotte, North Carolina, the "Charlotte Observer" reports.
Are more megamergers coming? Will four be cut to three? Unlikely, says Winston. "Mergers are very risky propositions. They don't necessarily work well." Corporate cultures can clash. Merging complicated computer reservation and scheduling networks can be bumpy, at best. Just ask United Airlines (UAL), which was still struggling to smooth its operations five years after its megamerger with Continental Airlines (CAL), the "Wall Street Journal" reported.
Appropriately, US Airways' last run will be Flight 1939, the year it all began. The flight will depart Friday from Philadelphia, heading to Charlotte and then Phoenix and San Francisco. From there, it will take off again and fly east, ending its celebratory journey on Saturday back in Philly, in the state where its history began.
There's one more thing US Airways might be remembered for: a heroic emergency landing by Captain Chesley "Sully" Sullenberger and First Officer, Jeffrey Skiles in January 2009.
After a bird strike during takeoff from New York's LaGuardia Airport, they landed their crippled plane safely in the Hudson River, saving all 155 people aboard. That bit of US Airways history will be remembered as one of the most upbeat and heartwarming stories of 2009.
Now, that aircraft lives inside the Carolinas Aviation Museum in Charlotte. Letters stretching across its fuselage read: US Airways.
Not a bad legacy to leave behind. Not bad at all.
News Item A-3: "Final US Airways Flight Completes Journey, Lands in Philly" by Associated Press (AP), October 18, 2015.
The final US Airways (AMW)/(USA) flight landed in Philadelphia, completing the last leg of its round trip journey. The Airbus A321 landed at Philadelphia International Airport at 5:54 am October 17 after departing from San Francisco at 1:07 am as a red-eye flight.
The aircraft operated as Flight 1939, named for US Airways' founding year.
The flight departed from Philadelphia at 10:36 am October 16, making scheduled stops in Charlotte, North Carolina; Phoenix, and San Francisco.
All future flights will fly under the American Airlines (AAL) banner, following the completion of a merger announced in 2013.
US Airways began as "All American Aviation," based in Pittsburgh. It later operated as Allegheny Airlines before becoming US Airways.
ACCORDING TO AIRLINER WORLD IN http://www.airlinerworld.com
IN 2015, US AIRWAYS WAS LISTED AS ONE OF THE AIRLINE FAILURES
ACCORDING TO THE GLOBAL AIRLINE GUIDE.
NOTE: For future developments please go to AAL - AMERICAN AIRLINES.
Click below for photos:
USA-A330-200 - 2015-01.jpg
USA-EMB-190 - 2006-12
0 737-200 (JT8D-15 HK) 21955 RTND (UAF), LST (WJI) 2000-07, 22792 PARKED (BFG) 2001-12. 22650 RTND 2003-10. 22651 ST JETRAN 2004-02. 22575 ST TURBO ANALYSIS 2004-04 & SCRAPPED. 22647 WFU AT (BFG). 22655 RTND 2004-07. 22653 WFU 2004-11. 22654 WFU 2004-12. 8F, 105Y.
00 737-200 (JT8D-15 HK) (22869; 22882; 22884; 22888; 22892; LST (VAG) 2000-01), 6 LST (CNJ) 2000-05, 20445; 20447; 21041, 21201; PARTED OUT 2000-10, 22354 LST (ROY) 2000-12, 21815 LST (ROY) 2001-02; 22273 LST (ROY) 2001-08. 34 RETIRED 2001-12. "METROJET" OPS. 118Y.
8 737-300 (CFM56-3B2) (737-3YO: 1381-23748) (23684). (737-33A: 1284-23626 RTND (AWW) 2001-08; 8 RTND 2001-10, 23636 RTND). 23219 RTND 2003-05. 23261; 23507; RTND 2005-09. 23633 WFU 2006-02. 23742; SCRAPPED 2008-04. 8F, 126Y.
40 737-300 (CFM56-3B2) (1103-23228, /85 N300AU; 1587-23937, /88 N592US). 4 FOR SALE. EXPECTS TO OPERATE A FLEET OF 280 MAINLINE APLS BY END of 2002, DOWN FROM 280 APLS AT END of 2002, & 311 IN 2002-08. 23385; 24516 PARTED OUT 2003-04. 23233 ST (GEF) 2003-04. 23382 PARTED OUT 2003-08. 23234; 23235; 23510; 23511; ST (GEF) 2003-11. 23550 SCRAPPED 2004-02. 24553 SCRAPPED 2003-12. 23552 RTND (GEF) 2004-05. 23554 REPOSSESSED 2004-05 BY US BANK. 23859 WFU IN STORAGE 2005-01. 23512; 23930; 23931; 24410; RTND TO LESSOR 2005-06. 23741; 23743; WFU 2005-07. 737-3YO (23684), RTND 2005-12. 23316; WFU 2006-01. 737-301'S (23555; 23557; 23558; 23559; 23740) WFU AT MARANA 2006-01. 23632 RTND 2006-01. 22950; PARTED OUT; 22953, TO INDONESIA; 22955; TO INDONESIA; 22957; 22958; 23311; 23313; 23317; 23318; 23705; 23706; 23856), RTND 2006-03. 22956; RTND 2006-04. 23258; WFU AT PHOENIX 200603. 23258; RTND (GEF) 2006-07. 23237; RTND 2007-09. 23742 RTND (GEF) 2008-04. 24711; RTND 2008-11. 23936; RTND (GEF) & SCRAPPED 2008-12. 24634; RTND 2009-01. 23627; WFU 2009-04; 23629; WFU 2009-05; 23625; & 23634; RTND 2009-06. 25400; 2009-08. 25400; RTND (GEF) 2009-09. 12F, 114Y.
0 737-3B7 (CFM56-3B2) (1427-23384, /87 N332AW; 1713-24411, N529AU), EX-(WPA), (GEH) LSD. 23857; 24411; RTND & PARTED OUT 2007-10. 23860, N525AU; PARTED OUT 2007-10; 23594; SCRAPPED 2008-04. 23862; WFU 2008-12. 23379; 23380; 23381; TO GOODYEAR FOR STORAGE 2010-07. 8F, 120Y.
1 737-3S3 (CFM56-3B2) (1519-24060, /90 N312AW; 1336-23712, /87 N313AW), EX-(PAL), KG AIRCRAFT LSD. 24060; RTND 2007-03. 8F, 118Y.
1 737-3U3 (CFM56-3B2) (3003-28740, /98 N335AW), EX-(GIA), (GEH) LSD, 8F, 120Y.
0 737-3YOQC (CFM56-3B2) (23499; 23500), (GUI) LSD, EX-(ALO), RTND (GEF) 2001-08. 8F, 126Y.
0 737-375 (CFM56-3B2) (1388-23707, /87 N336AW), EX-(ARE), (GEH) LSD. RTND 2006-04. 8F, 126Y.
14 737-400 (CFM56-3B2) (1487-23886, /88 N404US; 24996, N454UW; 24997, N455UW; 2020-25023, N459UW; 2026-25024, /91 N785AU). 3 FOR SALE. 23881 PARTED OUT 2003-04. 23877; 23878; 23882; SCRAPPED 2003-09. 24550 ST (TCI) 2003-12. 24558; 24559; ST RPK CAPITAL 2006-02; 24873; 24892; ST JET PARTNERS 2006-02. ALL 737-400'S ARE BEING RETIRED & REPLACED BY A321'S. 12F, 132Y.
3 757-23N (930-30548, N203UW; 945-30886, N204UW; 946-30887, N205UW), BF SP AIRCRAFT 2006-02.
11 757-200 (RB211-535E4) (757-2G7: N908AW IN ARIZONA CARDINALS RED & WHITE COLORS), (N902AW "TEAMWORK COAST TO COAST" US WEST LANDMARKS), 22691; RTND 2005-12. 27198; RTND 2009-02. 3 (ETOPS) EQ'PD, 14F, 176Y.
14 757-200 (RB211-535E4) (3-22192, /82 N600AU; 4-22193, N917UW; 17-22199, N920UW; 22-22202, N922UW; 26-22203, N923UW; 27-22204, N924UW; 28-22205, N925UW; 540-27124, N928UW; 544-27144, N929UW; 546-27145, N930UW; 564-27148, N931UW; 584-27198, N932UW; 586-27199, N933UW; 605-27201, N935UW; 607-27244, N936UW; 630-27245, N624UW; 647-27303, N939UW; 657-27806, N941UW; 27809, N200UU; 681-27811, /95 N202UW), 33 FOR SALE. 42-22210 RTND 2003-02. 27146; 27147 RTND LESSOR 2004-01. 27122; RTND 2007-01; 27124; 27148; RTND 2007-03. 22209; SCRAPPED 2009-02. 27199; RTND 2008-12. 27200; WFU 2009-06. 22193; 22198; 22201; 22202; SCRAPPED. 27123; & 27144; RTND (BBB) 2009-09. 22203; 22205; RTND (GEF) & SCRAPPED 2009-11. 22196; SCRAPPED 2010-02; NOT (ETOPS). N938UW; HAS WINGLETS. 24F, 158Y.
1 757-28A (32448, N756NA), (AAL) WET-LSD 2010-12.
5 767-201ER (CF6-80C2B2) (173-23897, /87 N245AY; 175-23898, N246AY; 190-23900, N248AY; 197-23901, N249AU; 217-23902, /88 N250AY), EX-(PIE). 23899 WFU 2003-01 AT MOJAVE. 4 FOR SALE. (ETOPS). 24C, 179Y.
5 767-2B7ER (CF6-80C2) (306-24764, /90 N251AY; 308-24765, N252AU; 338-24894, N253AY; 383-25257, N255AY; 486-26847, /93 N256AY; 375-25225; W/O 2000-09. 24C, 179Y.
0 DC-9-31 (45868; 47023; 47068; 47334; 47335; 47507 PARTED OUT) (47574; 47576; 47583; 47588; PARTED OUT), 6 LST (AEB), (47026; 47505; 48120; RETIRED MOJAVE 2000-01) (48156; 48159; RTND (GEH), ST (SJI) 2000-08) (47130; 47505; 47508; RETIRED 2000-09) (47050; 47375; 47420; 48115; 48143; RTRD MOJAVE 2001-02), ALL RETIRED BY 2001-08. 47351; 47352; 47050; 47130; 47189; 47310; 47336; 47371; 47374; 47375; 47420; 47505; 47508; 47593; SCRAPPED 2005-02. 22 ST JETRAN 2002-03.
0 DC-9-32 (45846; 47020; SCRAPPED MOJAVE 2001-01)
0 MD-81LR (48038-42 FOR SALE), 3 SOLD OR RETIRED BY 2002-04. 48036 RT TO LESSOR 2001-10; 7 WFU MOJAVE 2001-12. 48040 SCRAPPED 2004-06.
00 MD-82, ALL RETIRED BY 2002-04 AND 11 SOLD.
00 ORDERS (2006-02) A318-122 (PW6124), 12F, 98Y. 15 CANCELED:
64 A319-112 (CFM56-5B6/P) (885, /98 N700UW; 890, /98 N701UW; 896, /98 N702UW; 904, /98 N704UW; 922, /98 N704UW; 929, /98 N705UW; 946, /99 N706UW; 949, /99 N707UW; 997, /99 N709UW; 1019, /99 N710UW; 1033, /99 N711UW; 1038, /99 N712UW; 1046, /99 N714UW; 1051, /99 N715UW; 1055, /99 N716UW; 1155, /99 N728UW, 1/00; 1170, /00 N729US; 1203, /00 N732UW; 1205, /00 N733UW; 1209, /00 N736US; 1263, N739US; 1275, N742PS; 1277, N743UW). 896; 904; WFU AT (BFG). (1077; 1084; 1089; 1136; 1147; 1155; 1170; 1209; 1277) ST (RFG) 2005-02. 1263; RTND 2005-05. 946; RTND (GEF) 2006-01. 124Y OR 12F, 108Y.
2 A319-132 (V2524-A5) (1463, /01 N823AW; 2458, N835AW), (ILF) 12 YR LSD, 12F, 112Y.
5 A319-132 (V2524-A5) (1223, /00 N813AW; 1281, 1284; 1323, 1325; 1350, 1356; 1373, 1375, 1378; 1395, 1389) (1406, N821AW, 2001-01) (1490, N824AW, 2001-05). 12F, 112Y.
31 A319-132 (V2524-A5) (889, /98 N801AW; 1049; 1056; 1071; 1084; 1116; 1118), (1043), (GEH) LSD (1064) (1088, N808AW; 1078, N812AW). 1576, N831AW, 2001-09. 2302, N834AW, 2004-10. 2515, N838AW, 2005-11; 2570, N836AW, 2005-10; 2595, N837AW, N837AW; 2669, N839AW, 2006-02; 2690, N840AW, 2006-02. 12F, 112Y.
34/48 ORDERS (2/09) A319/A320/A321 (V2500):
1 A320-200 (V2527-A5) (2193, N672AW, 2004-01), (ILF) LSD. +3 ORDERS. 12F, 138Y.
26 A320-214 (CFM56-5B4/P) (861, /99 N103US; 868, /99 N105US; 936, /99 N101UW); 1044, /99 N106UA - W/O IN CRASH LANDING IN HUDSON RIVER NY IN 2009-01 - - SEE "AMW-USA-ACCDT-2009-01-A/B/C/D;" 1061, /99 N109UW; 1065, /99 N910UW; 1141, /99 N113UW; 1148, /99 N114UW; 2000-01; 1171, /00 N115US, 3/00; 1210, N116US; 4086, N125UW, 2009-11; 4149, N126UW, 2009-12; 4202, N127UW, 2010-02; 4242, N128UW, 2010-03). 1134, /99 N112US; TO (TSI). 936; TO PHILIPPINES 2005-10. 1210; RTND 2005-11. 12F, 138Y.
2 A320-231 (V2500-A1) (315; 317), MAINT BY (ACN) WINNIPEG. 12F, 138Y.
1 +1 ORDER A320-232 (1935, /03 N601AW) (BOU) LSD.
0 A320-232's (V2527-A5) (565, /96; 661, /97), EX-(ACH), (ILF) LSD 2004-01. 565; 661; RTND 2009-02. 174Y.
389 A320-232 (V2527-A5) (1166; 1621), 092 PARTED OUT 2003-03. 455; 2077; RTND (GEF), LST (DCC) 2006-01. 543; RTND 2009-03. 12F, 138Y.
1 A320-232 (V2527-A5) (1003, N653AW) (1110). (856, N666AW) (2029, N670AW, 2003-06), 2029 RTND (GEF), LST (DCC) 2006-01. 12F, 138Y.
5 A320-232 (V2527-A5) (762; 770; 803), (SIL) 10 YR LSD. 12F, 138Y.
1 A320-232 (V2527-A5) (527), EX-(SAE), (ILF) 87 MTH LSD 1999-11 & 2000-02, (543), EX-(COT), 527 WFU 2009-01. 12F, 138Y.
10 +4 ORDERS A320-232 (V2500-A1) (1234, N661AW; 1274, N662AW; 1284, N663AW; 1196, /00 N664AW; 054, N622AW, 2002-01; 2359, N674AW, 2005-01; 2422; 2430, N677AW, 2005-05; 2312, N673AW, 2004-11; 2482, N678AW, 2005-06; 2613, N679AW, 2005-12; 2630, N680AW, 2005-12). 12F, 138Y.
88 A321-211 (CFM56-5B3/P) (1436, N190UW; 1493, /01 N161UW; 1496, N192UW; 1521, N179UW; 1525, N180US; 1531, N181US; 1536, N182UW; 1539, N183UW; 1724, /02 N188US; 3879, N196UW, 2009-04; 3881, N519UW, 2009-04; 3924, N520UW, 2009-05; 3928, N197UW, 2009-06; 3960, N523UW, 2009-07; 3977, N524UW, 2009-07; 4025, N536UW, 2009-10; 4050, N538UW, 2009-10; 4082, N539UW, 2009-10; 5644, N154UW, 2013-06; 5659, N155UW, 2013-06; 5684, N156UW, 2013-07; 5696, N157UW, 2013-07;) (1822; 1830) NTU. 26F, 143Y.
13 A321-231 (4134, N542UW, 2009-12; 4885, N546UW, 2011-10; 4893, N547UW, 2011-10; 4898, N548UW; 5235, N555AY, 2012-07; 5899, N572UW, 2013-12; 6027, N576UW, 2014-03; 6035, N578UW, 2014-03; 6194, N584UW 2014-08; 6214, N585UW, 2014-08; 6230, N586UW, 2014-08; 6236, N587UW, 2014-08; 6249, N911UY, 2014-08; 6255, N913US 2014-08). 26F, 143Y.
7 +8/15 ORDERS A330-243 (TRENT 700) (1011, N279AY, 2009-06; 1043, N281AY, 2009-09; 1069, N282AY, 2009-11; 1095, N284AY 2010-03; 1100, N285AY, 2010-03; 1502, N291AY, 2014-03).
2 ORDERS A330-200, (ILF) LSD:
13 +0/16 ORDERS A330-323X (PW4168A) (315, /00 N270AY; 323, /00 N671UW; 333, N272AY; 337, N273AY; 342, /00 N274AY; 370, N275AY; 375, /00 N276AY; 380, N277AY; 388, /01 N278AY). 6F, 36C, 224Y.
22 ORDERS (2017-02) A350 XWB-900 (Trent XWB), 315 PAX:
6 B AE 146-200A (E2022; E2024; E2028; E2034; E2040; E2045), RTND FROM (DEB) 1999-12.
35 BOMBARDIER CRJ-200.
8 BOMBARDIER CRJ-700.
50 OPTIONS EMBRAER EMB-170/-190:
26 ERJ-170 (00012, N801MA, 2006-03; 00013, N802MD, 2006-03; 00015, N803MD; 00020, 2004-05; 00021, 2004-05; 00022, N809MD, 2004-06; 00028, N811MD, 2004-06; 00030, N812MD, 2004-06; 00031, N813MA, 2004-06; 00033, N814MD, 2004-07; 00034, N815MD, 2004-07; 00037, N816MA, 2004-08; 00038, N817MD, 2004-08; 00039, N818MD, 2004-08; 00040, N819MD 2004-08; 00041, N820MD 2004-08; 00043, N822MD 2004-09; 00046, N826MD, 2006-02). 00026; 00034; 00044; 00045; RTND REPUBLIC 2005-11. 00015; 00016; 00020; 00021; 00028; RTND REPUBLIC 2006-03.
20 +5/32 ORDERS EMBRAER EMB-190 (00058, N944UW, 2006-11 - SEE PHOTO; 00072, N946UW, 2007-03; 00078, N947UW, 2007-04; 00081, N948UW, 2007-06; 00102, N949UW, 2007-09; 0106, N950UW, 2007-09; 0112, N951UW, 2007-09; 0119, N952UW, 2007-07; 0133, N953UW, 2007-07; 0139, N954UW, 2007-07; 0152, N955UW, 2008-02; 0156, N956UW, 2008-03; 0161, N957UW, 2008-03; 0164, N958UW, 2008-04; 0166, N959UW, 2008-04; 0173, N960UW, 2008-05; 0183, N961UW, 2008-06; 0184, N962UW, 2008-06), 11F, 88Y.August
Click below for photos:
USA-1-DOUG PARKER - 2012-06
DOUG PARKER, CHAIRMAN & CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER (CEO).
SCOTT KIRBY, PRESIDENT, EX-(AMW) (2006-10) ((AAL)/US AIRWAYS (AMW)/(USA) TRANSITION MERGER PLANNER) (2013-02).
MS BEVERLY GOULET, (AAL) CHIEF RESTRUCTURING OFFICER & ((AAL)/US AIRWAYS (AMW)/(USA) TRANSITION MERGER PLANNER (2013-02).
DION FLANNERY, PRESIDENT US AIRWAYS EXPRESS (2008-01).
ROBERT ISOM, EXECUTIVE VP & CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER (COO) (2007-09).
DEREK KERR, EXECUTIVE VP & CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER (CFO) (2009-01).
STEPHEN JOHNSON, EXECUTIVE VP CORPORATE & GOVERNMENT AFFAIRS PLUS GENERAL COUNSEL (2009-03).
TIM CAMPBELL, SENIOR VP AIR OPERATIONS "NEW" AMERICAN (2013-12).
HAL HEULE, SENIOR VP TECHNICAL OPERATIONS (2005-10).
KEITH BUSH, SENIOR VP FINANCE, EX-(NWA) (2011-11).
CHRIS CHIAMES, SENIOR VP CORPORATE AFFAIRS.
JANET DHILLON, SENIOR VP & GENERAL COUNSEL (2006-08).
BRAD JENSEN, SENIOR VP & CHIEF INFORMATION OFFICER (CIO) (2009-01).
JERROLD GLASS, SENIOR VP EMPLOYEE RELATIONS.
EDWARD BULAR, SENIOR VP FLIGHT OPERATIONS/IN-FLIGHT, EX-(USA) (2006-10).
MS KERRY HESTER, SENIOR VP OPERATIONS & SUPPORT, EX-(NWA) (2010-09).
MS ELISE EBERWEIN, SENIOR VP PEOPLE, COMMUNICATION & CULTURE (2006-10).
MS SUZANNE BODA, SENIOR VP EAST COAST INTERNATIONAL & CARGO OPERATIONS, EX-(NWA) (2008-02).
ANDREW NOCELLA, SENIOR VP MARKETING & PLANNING.
CAPTAIN JOHN HALE, VP FLIGHT "NEW" AMERICAN (2013-12).
LYLE HOGG, VP FLIGHT OPERATIONS, US AIRWAYS (AMW)/(USA).
HECTOR ADLER, VP FLIGHT SERVICES.
CAPTAIN KIMBALL STONE, VP INTEGRATED OPERATIONS CONTROL (IOC).
WILLIAM BOZIN, VP SAFETY & REGULATORY COMPLIANCE (2000-02)
JOHN MCDONALD, VP CORPORATE COMMUNICATIONS (2011-07).
JAMES SCHEAR, VP RESTRUCTURING, EX-(FAA) (2004-09).
STAN SWITZER, VP COMPONENT & GROUND EQUIPMENT.
ROBERT LEBEAU, VP MATERIALS & COMPONENTS.
CHARLIE NARDELLO, VP TECHNICAL SERVICES (2002-12).
DARYL HARTZELL, VP TECHNICAL OPERATIONS (2002-12).
EILIF SERCK-HANNSEN, VP FINANCE & TREASURER (2003-07).
STEPHEN MORRELL, VP FINANCIAL PLANNING & ANALYSIS (2004-11).
ELIZABETH LANIER, CORPORATE SECRETARY (2004-03).
ANDREW NOCELLA, VP NETWORK & REVENUE MANAGEMENT (2004-03).
MS HELEN TREMONT, VP CORPORATE REAL ESTATE (2004-11).
MS DONNA PALADINI, VP CUSTOMER SERVICE (2004-01).
MS KATHLEEN JACKSON, VP & DEPUTY GENERAL COUNSEL (2004-03).
TOM TRENGA, VP REVENUE MANAGEMENT (2006-04).
THOMAS CHAPMAN, VP CONGRESSIONAL & FEDERAL AFFAIRS, EX-(SWA) (2006-10).
PAUL GALLEBERG, VP LEGAL AFFAIRS (2011-7).
MICHAEL MINERVA, VP LEGAL (2006-10).
MS SHERRI SHAMBLIN, VP IN-FLIGHT SERVICES (2007-01).
RYAN PRICE, VP HUMAN RESOURCES (HR) (2011-11).
DANIEL PON, VP HUMAN RESOURCES (HR) RESIGNED (2011-12).
ROBERT CIMINELLI, VP PHILADELPHIA OPERATION, EX-(AAL) (2008-02).
ALAN FERAYOMI, VP INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY (IT) INFRASTRUCTURE (2008-01).
KEVIN RICCOBONI, VP TECHNOLOGY DELIVERY (2008-01).
LARRY LESUEUR, VP CULTURE, RECRUITMENT & LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT, RETIRED (2008-09).
TODD CHRISTY, VP BUSINESS TECHNOLOGY (2009-06).
TOM LINDEMANN, VP RESERVATIONS & CUSTOMER PLANNING (2010-09).
BOB MALONEY, VP OPERATIONS CONTROL CENTER & AIR TRAFFIC CONTROL (2010-09).
RON THOMAS, MANAGING DIRECTOR, FLIGHT TECHNICAL OPERATIONS.
MS CHRISTINE KELLY SINGLEY, MANAGING DIRECTOR CORPORATE COMMUNICATIONS, EX-(DAL) (2013-07).
CAPTAIN RON SCHILLING, DIRECTOR FLIGHT TRAINING & STANDARDS.
CAPTAIN PAUL MORELL, 757/767 FLEET CAPTAIN.
CAPTAIN JOHN LEDNAK, 737-300/-400 FLEET CAPTAIN.
FRANK CORTEZ, MANAGING DIRECTOR PHILADELPHIA AIRPORT OPERATIONS (2004-03).
MS LIZ JACKSON, DIRECTOR MAINTENANCE INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY (IT), FINANCE & ADMINISTRATION.
MARK SWEARINGEN, DIRECTOR MAINTENANCE OPERATIONS CENTER/PLANNING (2002-12).
BRIAN DAVIS, DIRECTOR MAINTENANCE QUALITY ASSURANCE (QA) (2002-12).
BASIL BARIMO, DIRECTOR SAFETY (2000-04).
MS LINDA SRABIAN, DIRECTOR AIRBUS INTEGRATION (1998-01), EX-(UAL).
STEVE RATCLIFFE, DIRECTOR POWERPLANT MAINTENANCE (1999-08).
MARK RUDO, DIRECTOR ENGINEERING & E-PUBLICATIONS (2001-09).
MS ANDREA RADER, DIRECTOR CORPORATE COMMUNICATIONS, EX-(AAL) (2006-04).
MS MELODY ANDERSEN, DIRECTOR CUSTOMER STRATEGY.
DAVE DRISCOLL, MANAGER QUALITY ASSURANCE (QA).
JOHN MANUEL, MANAGER COMPONENT & SUPPORT SHOPS.
MS IRENE DOUGLAS, MANAGER APPLICATION DEVELOPMENT
BOB MATSON, MANAGER PROPULSION ENGINEERING.
NORM WHITE, 737 FLEET MANAGER.
DAVID SHIELDS, 737 ENGINEERING MANAGER, EX-(AMW) (2000-01).
WAYNE DUFFALA, SENIOR RELIABILITY ENGINEER 757/767.