The following has been taken from Jane's Transportation Magazine. Jane's is a Worldwide Military/Civilian Aviation authority.
Continental Airlines Buyback
Continental Airlines will attempt to buyback a controlling stake held in the company by Northwest Airlines. The two sides have been in talks for sometime but Northwest, which holds 51% of Continental's A shares, is unlikely to give up the stake in the near future. Continental has proposed the buyback in a drive to simplify its equity structure.Northwest purchased its 51% share of the A shares from Air Partners in a deal costing the carrier $519m in 1998. Continental's independence was preserved by limitations on Northwest's voting powers. But the US Justice Department has filed a lawsuit which charges that the transaction was anti-competitive. Both parties work together in an existing alliance. Minnesota-based Northwest and Continental, which is headquartered in Houston, Texas, are the US's fourth and fifth largest carriers.
Cathay Pacific to Split Order, No one interested in A3XX
Sources say Cathay Pacific will split an order for B777s, A340-600s and possibly -500s. The size of the order has not been formalised. Separately, Cathay Pacific is said to be one of a number of carriers including Air France, Japan Air Lines, Lufthansa, British Airways, Singapore Airlines and All Nippon Airways, which have apparently given Airbus the thumbs down on its proposed A3XX jumbo. Sources say that taking a pass on being a launch customer does not preclude ordering the jumbo once it goes into production.
US Airways Looking?
A market source says that Boeing is making a third trip to US Airways this week, pitching the B-717. Boeing is said to be amenable to taking trade-ins on the carrier's B-737s, MD-80s whereas Airbus seems not to be. US Airways also flies 34 DC-9s, 34 B-757s and 40 Fokker 100s among other older planes. Warren Lamb, a Boeing spokesman charged with divulging some information on the B-717, said Boeing will no longer give production schedules. It is estimated that 30 B-717s will be produced this year, ramping up to 60 units next year. Boeing has booked 130 firm orders for the model - 12 of which have been delivered. Of that amount, 50 are earmarked for struggling TWA. That carrier reported losses of $353.4m for 1999, with most of the shortfall due to a fourth-quarter loss that grew sharply from a year earlier. The company said it was still suffering from the effects of labour uncertainty last spring and summer. TWA's losses mean the carrier has not turned an annual profit since 1988. TWA has said it will use the B-717s to replace its DC-9s. Deliveries were slated to begin this month. Source of financing yet to be determined.