Topic Author
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EAL Question

Wed Nov 14, 2001 1:23 am

Do you beleive that EAL became too big aside from the bad manamgment from Lorenzo/Borman managment scandal. Before they went under they we're flying MIA-LGW and ATL-LGW and in South America and the Carribean they inherited from Braniff. Do you beleive that if EAL never got the South American routes that they would be around or was it soley on managment?
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Joined: Sat Nov 18, 2000 12:54 am

RE: EAL Question

Wed Nov 14, 2001 2:14 am

EAL had been suffering for a good long while, even through the 70s. In addition, they placed large orders for 757s and A300s at a time when interest rates were high ('77 - '78) and they had to live with this until their demise. I'm not sure how Latin America really affected their balance sheet but with such a large existing presence in MIA it seems like it was a good idea. Just my $0.02, we might have some real experts here.

RE: EAL Question

Wed Nov 14, 2001 3:23 am

Bad management? Try just about the most unscrupulous union leadership in the history of the airline business. Eastern was doomed from about 1970 onwards.
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Joined: Tue Oct 09, 2001 12:22 am

RE: EAL Question

Wed Nov 14, 2001 3:43 am

Bad management AND nasty unions = disaster!!! Remember it was Charlie Bryant and the machinist union that wouldn't take pay cuts. This forced Frank Borman to sell to Frank Lorenzo, who in turn started dismantling the airline. Then it was Charlie and the unions who struck(striked). You know the rest. Eastern was my ABSOLUTE favorite airline. It still pisses me off to this day!!!!!  Sad
"We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope." - Martin Luther King, Jr.
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Joined: Fri Oct 13, 2000 11:53 pm

RE: EAL Question

Wed Nov 14, 2001 4:30 am

A lot of Eastern's problems can be traced back to Eddie Rickenbacker, a geniune war hero but not a good airline CEO. He insisted on keeping the props when all the competition was going to jets. Eastern got behind, and never caught up. A very sad story, but a history lesson we should remember.

Flying Colors Forever!
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Joined: Tue Oct 09, 2001 12:22 am

RE: EAL Question

Wed Nov 14, 2001 5:53 am

By the way I don't think Eastern flew Atlanta- London
"We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope." - Martin Luther King, Jr.
Posts: 453
Joined: Mon Oct 08, 2001 2:04 pm

RE: EAL Question

Wed Nov 14, 2001 6:42 am

On a small side note, it's funny to me that a bunch of ex-airlines have had their names resurrected. Consider Midway, Braniff (at least 3 times), Pan Am.... No one has considered resurrecting Eastern. Damn shame too...what a fine airline.

As for the route structure, it seems like the european routes were not a good idea--but on the other hand, they had very few of them, so you can't say that it brought down the airline (but I can't help but wonder how much good it was to have been maintaining a few DC-10's for a Tristar carrier.)

I think the LatAm routes fit well with Eastern--they were able to bring passengers from other parts of the country and connect them onto flights going to Latin America in a way that I suspect Braniff was never able to do. The routes had to have been profitable in some way...otherwise they couldn't have sold them to American. (Perhaps some of this board will disagree, but as a rule, airlines on the verge of bankruptcy first sell their most profitable routes. Pan Am first sold their pacific routes to UAL, then their euro routes to Delta...Eastern sold their LatAm routes to American.)
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RE: EAL Question

Wed Nov 14, 2001 7:30 am

A (Poor management decision making, i.e. loans and aircraft purchase terms 1970's, not Frank Lorenzo's doing, he wanted EA to survive with CO and eventual merger) + B (Stuborn Union leadership, where is Charlie today? Could not face econ. reality of the time) + C (Eddie Rickenbacker resistence to jet aircraft and love of the Connie's... competative disadvantage) + D (Constant cuts, furloughs, employee morale was at an all time low) = Z. (Out of business 1st Spring 1989, and finally Winter 1991.)

Too bad, long live the falcon, I loved working with the talented optimistic team at that airline. Bf.
Tom in NO
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Joined: Thu Nov 11, 1999 10:10 am

RE: EAL Question

Wed Nov 14, 2001 7:37 am

For a good read on the Eastern Airlines decline and bankruptcy, check out "Grounded" by Aaron Bernstein.

Tom in NO (at MSY)
"The criminal ineptitude makes you furious"-Bruce Springsteen, after seeing firsthand the damage from Hurricane Katrina

RE: EAL Question

Wed Nov 14, 2001 8:01 am

Hey JonPaulGeoRngo, LOVE the name!  Smile/happy/getting dizzy

RE: EAL Question

Wed Nov 14, 2001 9:56 am


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