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RyanairGuru
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Wed Sep 02, 2020 1:54 pm

Until a year or so ago, reading a different thread on this website about the final NW livery, I always thought that the triangle was pointing DOWN. It blew my mind to realise it was a compass point like the bowling show livery!

I always thought the livery looked completely stupid, as - to me - it was just a series of geometric shapes, with a triangle inside a circle. The reason that I saw it this way is that the top side of the triangle is horizontal, if the compass direction had been angled slightly more I think it would have made more sense, albeit maybe not look quite so clean and modern.
 
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einsteinboricua
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Wed Sep 02, 2020 2:11 pm

PANAMsterdam wrote:
Honestly, I can't think of any other reason as to why the Delta widget on the tails are pointing to the Northwest, it must be (at very least) a little nod or wink to NW


I've been saying the same thing ever since the new (current) livery was unveiled. But as usual (and evidenced on the thread), it's either a happy coincidence or complete BS.

If Delta just wanted the Widget back on the tail, they could've placed it upright like it is in the fuselage and many other places.
 
bourbon
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Wed Sep 02, 2020 2:45 pm

Cointrin330 wrote:
12 years later, the DL/NW merger, which was widely panned by the business press when it was first announced, remains a text book case in how to merge two airlines. Sure, they had a lot of advantages going into it. They both filed Chapter 11 at roughly the same time. Their CEO's had enough knowledge of the other's operations. There was less overlap and an opportunity to deconstruct two hubs (MEM, CVG) and reassign the assets to other more profitable stations. Merging airlines is an extremely complex process and there are so many issues and tasks, many of which seem mundane, that, if not handled properly, can have a ripple effect on operations and the entire process can be unforgiving. DL/NW handled it very well. Of all the airline mergers in the US that happened since 2005 when the wave of consolidation kicked off with US/AW, the DL/NW one from a process standpoint, is a standout for all the right reasons. IMHO, AA/US comes in second. Although a forced marriage in some ways, from an execution standpoint, there were few disruptions that had a major impact on operations and the technology platform merger seemed quite smooth. UA/CO was, by contrast, a complete mess that took about 8 years to get the kinks out.

US/AA is one of the worst mergers in history ...
 
MIflyer12
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Wed Sep 02, 2020 3:02 pm

The OP's link to Simple Flying shows just how worthless it is for analysis and comment. There is nothing new to be said:

- pilot widebody fences came down years ago

- FA integration and training across types was completed long ago

- elections to retain NW unions were completed a ~decade ago

- the fleets were rationalized

- the route network was rationalized

- some exec positions are already in the 2nd or 3rd gen of post-merger selections

Simple Flying may as well be citing a 4th grade history textbook on the Spanish-American War: really, it adds nothing new to understanding. It seldom does.

They're not informing you - they're monetizing your page views. Don't be used.
 
Cointrin330
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Wed Sep 02, 2020 3:07 pm

bourbon wrote:
Cointrin330 wrote:
12 years later, the DL/NW merger, which was widely panned by the business press when it was first announced, remains a text book case in how to merge two airlines. Sure, they had a lot of advantages going into it. They both filed Chapter 11 at roughly the same time. Their CEO's had enough knowledge of the other's operations. There was less overlap and an opportunity to deconstruct two hubs (MEM, CVG) and reassign the assets to other more profitable stations. Merging airlines is an extremely complex process and there are so many issues and tasks, many of which seem mundane, that, if not handled properly, can have a ripple effect on operations and the entire process can be unforgiving. DL/NW handled it very well. Of all the airline mergers in the US that happened since 2005 when the wave of consolidation kicked off with US/AW, the DL/NW one from a process standpoint, is a standout for all the right reasons. IMHO, AA/US comes in second. Although a forced marriage in some ways, from an execution standpoint, there were few disruptions that had a major impact on operations and the technology platform merger seemed quite smooth. UA/CO was, by contrast, a complete mess that took about 8 years to get the kinks out.

US/AA is one of the worst mergers in history ...


From an integration standpoint, it actually was not. There were no major disruptions to customers and operational issues as it went along, so from an IT perspective, it went well. The problem with the US and AA merger is that the US way of doing business largely took over and blended with the bean counting DNA that has always been part of AA's process (remember when they famously touted saving $1 million removing olives from salads in the 1990s?) The AA/US merger was one of necessity. Neither carrier could survive as stand alone carriers given the scale DL/NW and UA/CO achieved. What AA and US have not done well is rationalize the network (before COVID19). AA could have been a bigger player in the northeast and taken advantage of it and US's footprint in the BOS market and instead doubled down on PHL because it has so much less competition there.
 
mikedelta720
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Wed Sep 02, 2020 5:35 pm

southwest1675 wrote:
I wish DL would do retro/historic liveries.


Me too. AA and UA do it. Even UA has a plane that completely spells out Continental Airlines!

DL should, especially being the first of the major airlines to merge. I hope I see a NW heritage livery soon. The Bowling Shoe livery is the best IMO because the symbol wouldn't flip on the other side of the plane.
 
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NWAESC
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Wed Sep 02, 2020 6:13 pm

MIflyer12 wrote:
Simple Flying may as well be citing a 4th grade history textbook on the Spanish-American War: really, it adds nothing new to understanding. It seldom does.

They're not informing you - they're monetizing your page views. Don't be used.


This definitely screamed "content marketing creation" to me.

One could write a really in-depth piece about what all went wrong (plenty), what went right (also plenty), and how everything came to hit on all cylinders right up to COVID.

Maybe I'll do that someday... Just look for the keywords and links. :D
 
FSDan
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Wed Sep 02, 2020 8:49 pm

Cointrin330 wrote:
The merger was a net positive for NW and DL employees, customers, and even though some of it was smoke and mirrors, the merged company has done a lot to make flying a generally better experience. I can say that from experience when things go wrong, having flown Delta amid snowstorms, mechanical issues, and other operational delays. The response times, options provided, and service levels were a cut above what I experienced at the time from the other US3 (2014-2018).


I agree with this. As a Y passenger, DL has stood out to me as the major that put the most effort into actually making the customer experience enjoyable, and not just for those paying multiple times more to sit up front. The good experiences have been better than the best experiences I've had on competitors (and the best experiences on DL have actually been memorable), and the bad experiences have been handled better for the most part as well. In the last few years I've had some solid experiences on UA as well. AS and WN have always been dependably solid for me, but nothing too memorable. AA has just not made me feel like anything more than a contribution to a higher load factor. I've yet to fly B6 as I've never lived closer than 2 hours from an airport they serve (and they've had only a handful of daily flights in those cases), but from what I hear they're up there with DL.
 
N649DL
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Wed Sep 02, 2020 11:15 pm

bourbon wrote:
Cointrin330 wrote:
12 years later, the DL/NW merger, which was widely panned by the business press when it was first announced, remains a text book case in how to merge two airlines. Sure, they had a lot of advantages going into it. They both filed Chapter 11 at roughly the same time. Their CEO's had enough knowledge of the other's operations. There was less overlap and an opportunity to deconstruct two hubs (MEM, CVG) and reassign the assets to other more profitable stations. Merging airlines is an extremely complex process and there are so many issues and tasks, many of which seem mundane, that, if not handled properly, can have a ripple effect on operations and the entire process can be unforgiving. DL/NW handled it very well. Of all the airline mergers in the US that happened since 2005 when the wave of consolidation kicked off with US/AW, the DL/NW one from a process standpoint, is a standout for all the right reasons. IMHO, AA/US comes in second. Although a forced marriage in some ways, from an execution standpoint, there were few disruptions that had a major impact on operations and the technology platform merger seemed quite smooth. UA/CO was, by contrast, a complete mess that took about 8 years to get the kinks out.

US/AA is one of the worst mergers in history ...


I thought UA and CO was worse. Everybody knows that they took the cheap route and took the worst from both airlines starting with the paint job. People have short term memories I guess. AA didn't have it's CEO forced to resign in embarrassment (yet.)

DL and NW was a world class merger that literally started out with the BOD in a conference room and sticking post-it notes on a wall outlining the best parts of each airline. They later went on to implement all of them and it worked. Many actually came from NW as did many of it's top level employees. DL apparently also stole quite a bit of talent from CO by offering them huge pay raises to lure them over before the merger.

DL and NW I really do think were planning this scenario out for a long while as both file for BK on the same day. DL did it's rebranding 2007, which I really do think the tail is supposed to represent the Northwest Compass. They probably knew then that they were going to eventually merge and got ahead of it with the subtle tilted Widget on the tail.
 
Lootess
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Thu Sep 03, 2020 12:19 am

Sometimes I forget how Delta was once the largest airline in the world because of the merger. You hear Ed even say It in the merger video.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Acr5HIEVADs
 
nwadeicer
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Thu Sep 03, 2020 12:41 am

Took me the longest time to realize the white line makes it a "N" and "W" and also makes the compass point towards NW.Image
 
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DL_Mech
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Thu Sep 03, 2020 1:25 am

N649DL wrote:
DL and NW I really do think were planning this scenario out for a long while as both file for BK on the same day.


Until US Airways came along to throw a spanner in the works, then "Keep Delta My Delta" was born.
 
N649DL
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Thu Sep 03, 2020 4:41 am

DL_Mech wrote:
N649DL wrote:
DL and NW I really do think were planning this scenario out for a long while as both file for BK on the same day.


Until US Airways came along to throw a spanner in the works, then "Keep Delta My Delta" was born.


And I also don't think it's too much of a coincidence that some form of the USAirways logo made it onto the tail of AA's current fleet and the "Eagle" was then rebranded (the tail being another "Nod" to US, like what DL did with NW). I actually like what AA did with the "Eagle" logo, but the current tail is way too busy looking and the "American" logo always looks weird for breaking text over the exit doors on many of it's aircraft. Another mystery is why the DL text on the side of the plane is super small on some planes like the A332 but was much larger on the MD-88.

In terms of all 3 merger liveries, I think UA did the worst job. Literally scraping off "Continental" and pasting "United" onto it and then rebranding a 20+ year old livery onto UA's fleet replacing a newer livery that was recognizable and fresh. It then took them 10 years, but they finally refreshed the scheme but it still looks completely uninspiring (for the most part.) It can look OK on some aircraft but I still get a bellyache seeing that the "Globe" is still around in some form. Again, way too busy looking and they should've updated it in some form.

Something else to consider is CO had it's chance to merge with NW (it seemed way too close in the late-1990s with it's code share agreement) and then DL swooped in. I wonder if they had done so what the CO/NW network would look like today? NW held that "Golden Share" rule as well. NW was also apparently very close to merging with Pan Am & incorporating KLM as well in 1989 but all talks bailed last second. In a book I read, Pan Am folks didn't get along with the Dutch and had trust issues with the banks to get it done.
 
Lootess
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Thu Sep 03, 2020 5:14 am

N649DL wrote:
DL_Mech wrote:
N649DL wrote:
DL and NW I really do think were planning this scenario out for a long while as both file for BK on the same day.


Until US Airways came along to throw a spanner in the works, then "Keep Delta My Delta" was born.


And I also don't think it's too much of a coincidence that some form of the USAirways logo made it onto the tail of AA's current fleet and the "Eagle" was then rebranded (the tail being another "Nod" to US, like what DL did with NW). I actually like what AA did with the "Eagle" logo, but the current tail is way too busy looking and the "American" logo always looks weird for breaking text over the exit doors on many of it's aircraft. Another mystery is why the DL text on the side of the plane is super small on some planes like the A332 but was much larger on the MD-88.

In terms of all 3 merger liveries, I think UA did the worst job. Literally scraping off "Continental" and pasting "United" onto it and then rebranding a 20+ year old livery onto UA's fleet replacing a newer livery that was recognizable and fresh. It then took them 10 years, but they finally refreshed the scheme but it still looks completely uninspiring (for the most part.) It can look OK on some aircraft but I still get a bellyache seeing that the "Globe" is still around in some form. Again, way too busy looking and they should've updated it in some form.

Something else to consider is CO had it's chance to merge with NW (it seemed way too close in the late-1990s with it's code share agreement) and then DL swooped in. I wonder if they had done so what the CO/NW network would look like today? NW held that "Golden Share" rule as well. NW was also apparently very close to merging with Pan Am & incorporating KLM as well in 1989 but all talks bailed last second. In a book I read, Pan Am folks didn't get along with the Dutch and had trust issues with the banks to get it done.


As for the A330 DELTA logo, I remember thinking why was the widget so far from 2R, because if it was closer they can make the font larger. But you'll notice the marks near the door and window. Obviously over time it has changed and the marks are behind the logo.

First ever A330-300 242 tonne in TLS:
Image
Image

First NEO delivery:
Image

Speaking of fun Airbus photos. This was the best A350 paint decision ever.

Image

Image
 
n7371f
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Thu Sep 10, 2020 5:03 am

Simple Flying is bot-level, high school journalism crap.

NWAESC wrote:
MIflyer12 wrote:
Simple Flying may as well be citing a 4th grade history textbook on the Spanish-American War: really, it adds nothing new to understanding. It seldom does.

They're not informing you - they're monetizing your page views. Don't be used.


This definitely screamed "content marketing creation" to me.

One could write a really in-depth piece about what all went wrong (plenty), what went right (also plenty), and how everything came to hit on all cylinders right up to COVID.

Maybe I'll do that someday... Just look for the keywords and links. :D
 
ERAUMBA
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Thu Sep 10, 2020 7:22 am

What an interesting thread and so informative to read. It is amazing how the direction of a sideways triangle and the particular shade of red, and, dates when bankruptcies were filed could produce such a fruitful joining of two world renowned companies.

I am surprised, however, that no one has mentioned the following (please excuse my bias towards that unmentionable Delawre-incorporated, Minnesota-based, longest same-name recognition carrier in existence, the quiet pioneer of the Pacific, the US Air Mail original, “Northwest Airlines” as they were my employer for 31 years):

-Northwest & Delta’s commitment to a single SOC (for those unaware, that’s industry acronym speak for “Single Operating Certificate”) which was obatIned faster, and with incredible support from the FAA and DOT, than any other merger in history

-The ability of the Agent and Flight Attendant workgroups to come together on seniority and integration rules in a light-speed fashion

-The combination of the NWA Bldg F Dispatchers/Ops/Meteorological/Navigation/NATCO work group with Delta’s Flight “Superintendent”/Dispatch/Meteorology work groups - which was seamless.

-The combination/integration of two training companies and philosophies (NATCO/DELTA) and the SOPA/SMAC synergies obtained when Northwest opened their flying books to Delta.

-The financial synergies presented post-bankruptcy

-The benefit of aircraft and engine commonalities (especially with regard to the PMNW 757, especially -5600 ETOPS fleet)

-A complimentary route structure, giving special review and consideration to Northwest’s AMS Joint Venture and South of Tokyo flying and Delta’s extensive Europe and South America flying.

-ALPA’s willingness to have seniority integration and very liberal widebody fencing with regard to both pilot groups (at Northwest, until mid2000-ish we still had a vastly divided and fenced-out pilot group...Red Book/Green Book guys)...

-The benefit of write-downs and charge-offs that the merger allowed to benefit the merged entity...

My list is endless, but, yeah. The new paint job is great. I love that my old A330’s have “DELTA” written across the belly. That’s the best thing that’s come out of this merger, for sure. Paint jobs and the new Biscoff’s.

Biscoff’s. Yes - that’s what I appreciate most about the merger with Delta. Biscoff cookies.
 
MichiganFlyer
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Fri Sep 11, 2020 11:46 pm

Les we forget the words spoken by Richard Anderson and Douglass Steenland that no hubs would close. Memphis folks would say different. Also what Richard Anderson said to Detroit at the grand opening of the new McNamara terminal that Northwest would remain a independent carrier. If i could post the videos from my phone i would. By the way i was there in Detroit when he said that and got a picture with him and Van.Wyk from KLM.
 
stratosphere
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Sat Sep 12, 2020 2:50 am

meh130 wrote:
It was a well-executed merger, and set the standard for the UA-CO and AA-US mergers. I remember reading at the time the merger was helped by the fact the fleets, except for the 757-200, were mostly different. The allowed the pilot seniority lists to operate independently until the details were worked out. The fact the pilots agreed to a new contract made things simpler too. Getting the pilot buy in early was a big deal, and allowed management to hold them up as an example. IIRC, no pilots initially lost in the deal. They bumped up the pay rate in the new contract to whichever airline had the higher pay for that class of airframe. The FAs were more of a challenge, as NW's FAs were unionized and DL's were not. Ultimately, this was worked out as well going through two unionization votes. The fact NW's militant machinist union had been broken after their ongoing strike also helped. I had a NW pilot friend who said the mechanics lost all of the support of the pilots and FAs after they took pay cuts after 9/11.


Why because the pilots and F/A's were willing to take concessions from the assholes who ran NW and the mechanics didn't? We fought like hell to get rid of the IAM and paycuts from 1993 that all groups took. In return for us giving up pay in 1993 the IAM negotiated (rolls eyes) to get preferred stock (the pilots got common stock) we were promised a "put" price on that stock after 10 years. Well 10 years came and went and NW being incorporated in Delaware a corporate friendly judge said nah you don't have to honor that promise. We thru the IAM to the curb and voted in AMFA. So when NW came around asking for a handout after 911 we told them just what they told us go pound it. So NW did their thing and forced us out in 2005 actually worked out better for me in the long run but I lost almost 20 years and had to start over but I don't regret standing our ground even if it cost me my career.
 
n7371f
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Sat Sep 12, 2020 4:14 am

The Landor-designed NW compass in 1989 is one of the best airline logos ever. Right up there with the Saul Bass UA Tulip, Pan Am globe and Delta widget.
 
n7371f
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Sat Sep 12, 2020 4:15 am

Times change. Economies change. Survival changes. That said...Richard's Memphis comment was widely viewed as bunk when it was said.

MichiganFlyer wrote:
Les we forget the words spoken by Richard Anderson and Douglass Steenland that no hubs would close. Memphis folks would say different. Also what Richard Anderson said to Detroit at the grand opening of the new McNamara terminal that Northwest would remain a independent carrier. If i could post the videos from my phone i would. By the way i was there in Detroit when he said that and got a picture with him and Van.Wyk from KLM.
 
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spinotter
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Sat Sep 12, 2020 9:08 am

n7371f wrote:
Times change. Economies change. Survival changes. That said...Richard's Memphis comment was widely viewed as bunk when it was said.

MichiganFlyer wrote:
Les we forget the words spoken by Richard Anderson and Douglass Steenland that no hubs would close. Memphis folks would say different. Also what Richard Anderson said to Detroit at the grand opening of the new McNamara terminal that Northwest would remain a independent carrier. If i could post the videos from my phone i would. By the way i was there in Detroit when he said that and got a picture with him and Van.Wyk from KLM.


DL and NW probably knew on the day that MichiganFlyer references that CVG and MEM were going to have to close, like CLE for UA/CO and JFK for AA/US, but they had to keep up the party line to get the mergers approved.
 
brilondon
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Sat Sep 12, 2020 11:44 am

n7371f wrote:
Simple Flying is bot-level, high school journalism crap.

NWAESC wrote:
MIflyer12 wrote:
Simple Flying may as well be citing a 4th grade history textbook on the Spanish-American War: really, it adds nothing new to understanding. It seldom does.

They're not informing you - they're monetizing your page views. Don't be used.


This definitely screamed "content marketing creation" to me.

One could write a really in-depth piece about what all went wrong (plenty), what went right
(also plenty), and how everything came to hit on all cylinders right up to COVID.

Maybe I'll do that someday... Just look for the keywords and links. :D


It's just a blog. Like most blogs it's nothing I would get excited over. Just the writer's opinion.
 
machbullet
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Sat Sep 12, 2020 4:16 pm

I think looking back, its easy to take for granted that DL and NW would merge, but at that time, that was not as obvious and to be honest, DL/NW could have merged with anyone else.

In the end, UA emerged as by far the biggest winner of the mergers with an unrivalled hub network and the highest premium O/D of the big 3, mainly because they were the first ones to pick a merger so they got to pick from the best. UA/CO paid the price for it by being 1st, but long-term, it worked out better than DL/NW, as being 2nd place entails.
 
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Boeing757100
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Sat Sep 12, 2020 4:44 pm

Despite that people think NW should merged with UA or CO or something, I thought it was perfect. NW's poor Europe/Africa/South America availability went nicely with DL's poor Asia availability. The networks mesh nicely together.
 
JAMBOJET
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Sat Sep 12, 2020 5:05 pm

machbullet wrote:
I think looking back, its easy to take for granted that DL and NW would merge, but at that time, that was not as obvious and to be honest, DL/NW could have merged with anyone else.

In the end, UA emerged as by far the biggest winner of the mergers with an unrivalled hub network and the highest premium O/D of the big 3, mainly because they were the first ones to pick a merger so they got to pick from the best. UA/CO paid the price for it by being 1st, but long-term, it worked out better than DL/NW, as being 2nd place entails.

Huh? UA/CO merged first?
 
CMHARJ
Topic Author
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Sat Sep 12, 2020 5:09 pm

I know with NW pre bankruptcy, NW had TONS of 4 Hour Rule stations, which basically had mainline employees in small stations working mostly RJs with maybe one or two mainline planes. I know there were quite a bit of stations that didn't see mainline planes in year, but were still mainline employees (eg: FWA, DAY, AZO). After the bankruptcy, with the exception of 40 stations, those 4 Hour Rule stations were outsourced. How many of those former 4 Hour Rule stations eventually became mainline again once the merger happened. I know DAY was mainline for DL, but outsourced for NW, eventually that station becoming all mainline.
 
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NWAESC
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Sat Sep 12, 2020 5:30 pm

Now is the perfect time to bring 4-Hour rule stations back.
 
NW
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Sat Sep 12, 2020 5:48 pm

JAMBOJET wrote:
machbullet wrote:
I think looking back, its easy to take for granted that DL and NW would merge, but at that time, that was not as obvious and to be honest, DL/NW could have merged with anyone else.

In the end, UA emerged as by far the biggest winner of the mergers with an unrivalled hub network and the highest premium O/D of the big 3, mainly because they were the first ones to pick a merger so they got to pick from the best. UA/CO paid the price for it by being 1st, but long-term, it worked out better than DL/NW, as being 2nd place entails.

Huh? UA/CO merged first?


Big huh? CO could not do anything merger wise without NWs blessing till the golden share NW held over CO was redeemed. The share was not redeemed till NW/DL announced their merger.
 
CMHARJ
Topic Author
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Sat Sep 12, 2020 10:09 pm

NWAESC wrote:
Now is the perfect time to bring 4-Hour rule stations back.


I agree to a point. It will allow people to retain their jobs. However, I was bitter at times because those employees were basically only working the SAABS and RJs, but still on the pay scale of mainline employees working mainline planes on a regular basis. To each their own I guess.
 
TYWoolman
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Sun Sep 13, 2020 2:11 pm

gaystudpilot wrote:
Agree that it was a well executed integration from many perspectives. I also believe DL did a tremendous job building the brand post integration.

I would, however, be curious to read the merger business case presented to the DL BOD, specifically regarding the TPAC network, market share and revenue potential. Given how DL’s TPAC network has evolved since the merger, I wonder how different it is today from the DL-NW business case presented.



That would be interesting for sure. Perhaps the business case was to eventually steal JAL away from American. We all know how that went. Not having JAL made the legacy Northwest Tokyo hub/Pacific network de-valued IMO.
 
TYWoolman
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Sun Sep 13, 2020 2:17 pm

Boeing757100 wrote:
What if I am a fan of DL but I also miss NW??



Go to Detroit, close your eyes and pretend the engines you hear are Northwest 757-100s. That's what I would do.
 
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Boeing757100
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Sun Sep 13, 2020 3:04 pm

TYWoolman wrote:
Boeing757100 wrote:
What if I am a fan of DL but I also miss NW??



Go to Detroit, close your eyes and pretend the engines you hear are Northwest 757-100s. That's what I would do.




You mean 757-200s?
 
bigred10k
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Sun Sep 13, 2020 4:10 pm

For southern Ohio, the merger was absolutely devastating. CVG was a thriving airport, but with the highest average fares in the lower 48. It quickly became a ghost of its former self following the merger. Terminal 2, which had served NW and other airlines, was torn down. Concourse C demolished. The merger literally tore down CVG.

DAY and CMH had as many as 8x daily flights to CVG, and those markets were very competitive on price. I always found DAY more convenient than driving into KY to catch a flight, so I regularly flew out of DAY and connected in CVG. NW also had good connections from DAY to places like RNO that were not regularly served as non-stop routes from CVG (I never cared for connecting in SLC with its outdoor terminal).

After the merger, DL upped the frequency from DAY to ATL, but there was no similar in uptick to MSP or DTW. Ticket prices skyrocketed in DAY and also remained high in CVG with its reduced capacity. Upgrades, which were easy to come by on NW, became an impossibility on DL out of CVG. Too many platinum medallion members who continued to fly DL and pay the high ticket prices for diminishing returns.

Meanwhile AA stepped up its game in DAY, with increased non-stop frequencies to ORD, DFW, DCA, CLT and LGA. AA displaced DL as the no. 1 airline in DAY. I switched and haven't looked back, only flying DL occasionally out of CVG if the stars align and the single non-stops to places like LAX and SFO fit my schedule.
 
TYWoolman
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Sun Sep 13, 2020 6:46 pm

Boeing757100 wrote:
TYWoolman wrote:
Boeing757100 wrote:
What if I am a fan of DL but I also miss NW??



Go to Detroit, close your eyes and pretend the engines you hear are Northwest 757-100s. That's what I would do.




You mean 757-200s?


Yes, or the 300s, but I thought you knew of another derivative based on your name.
 
SurfandSnow
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Sun Sep 13, 2020 7:50 pm

CMHARJ wrote:
I agree that the two airlines complimented themselves with the fleet and routing, but the writing was on the wall from the very get-go in regards to keeping all the hubs. There was no way they could financially and realistically keep 4 hubs right on top of each other. CVG and MEM were bound to get de-hubed within time. However, in order to get the government approval for the merger, they had to promote that all hubs were safe.


The O&D figures for CVG and MEM had to be atrocious. I remember services like CVG-EGE on the 757 and MEM-ASE on the Avro RJ. IIRC CVG even had nonstops to places like ANC, FCO and HNL - it just didn't seem sustainable or a remotely realistic reflection of the local market needs. I think CVG was merely a way for DL to have a foothold in the heartland and specifically the Midwest (especially after DFW was de-hubbed), while MEM served a similar function for NW in the South. Mainline DC-9 service on routes like MEM-GPT also seemed like overkill, even at that time.

The NW merger, of course, gave DL not one but two hubs that could better serve the Great Plains and Midwest. Simply put, there was/is probably far more O&D demand for the Twin Cities and Southeastern Michigan than Cincinnati. At MEM, DL actually did try to build up the hub - IIRC they tried new services to AMA, DAL, LBB and even MEX. Even with additional hub feed and nonstop destinations for local FFers MEM just didn't work out, and of course, DL moved on to other opportunities: BOS, LAS, LAX, LGA, MCO, RDU, SEA, etc. I think the pandemic recovery will be very telling as to what has and hasn't worked out for DL since the merger. Nobody was surprised to see both CVG and MEM get reduced to spokes, of course.
 
Lootess
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Sun Sep 13, 2020 8:37 pm

DL/NW was a perfect match, and the lack of overlapping routes made the merger approval easy. Asia was always DL's sore spot, and Europe and South America was NW's weakness.

DL/CO probably would have required jettisoning a lot of slots in NYC area

DL/UA actually had some prelim conversations but each wanted to be the surviving entity. So that's a non-starter.

Delta did build-up MEM for awhile post-merger. Stuff like MEM-SEA really were stretching it's capacity, some MEM spokes moved to ATL easily like FSM, some had to be jettisoned like LBB, and MSL.

DTW probably benefited the most from the merger, getting more premier routes like DTW-GRU, DTW-HKG, DTW-HND among others.
 
mbooher
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Sun Sep 13, 2020 9:01 pm

Pinnacle Airlines sure took a shafting.
 
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NWAESC
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Sun Sep 13, 2020 9:12 pm

Mainline DC-9 service on routes like MEM-GPT also seemed like overkill, even at that time.


I worked in MEM for a little bit in the late '90's. A lot of those flights carried a lot of mail/freight.
 
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NWAESC
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Sun Sep 13, 2020 9:16 pm

CMHARJ wrote:
NWAESC wrote:
Now is the perfect time to bring 4-Hour rule stations back.


I agree to a point. It will allow people to retain their jobs. However, I was bitter at times because those employees were basically only working the SAABS and RJs, but still on the pay scale of mainline employees working mainline planes on a regular basis. To each their own I guess.


I hear ya. The counter to that is (rhetorically) asking why someone in a hub should be paid top-of-scale to just work the bagroom day in/day out.

In current stations that have, say, mainline upstairs & DGS outside I'd like to see us doing it all.
 
CMHARJ
Topic Author
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Sun Sep 13, 2020 9:33 pm

NWAESC wrote:
CMHARJ wrote:
NWAESC wrote:
Now is the perfect time to bring 4-Hour rule stations back.


I agree to a point. It will allow people to retain their jobs. However, I was bitter at times because those employees were basically only working the SAABS and RJs, but still on the pay scale of mainline employees working mainline planes on a regular basis. To each their own I guess.


I hear ya. The counter to that is (rhetorically) asking why someone in a hub should be paid top-of-scale to just work the bagroom day in/day out.

In current stations that have, say, mainline upstairs & DGS outside I'd like to see us doing it all.


I agree 10000%. If a station has mainline upstairs, they should have mainline downstairs. Keep everything consistent and also another way to save jobs. However, DL is not going to budge and replace DGS with mainline employees. They don't have to worry about salaries and benefits. Plus from an economic standpoint, it's easier and cheaper to pay someone $10-11/hour with low priority flight benefits, verses paying out $15-$20/hour with better health benefits and flying S2/S3 non-reving.

On a side note, after the NW bankruptcy, wasn't there a rule with a former 4 Hour station that got outsourced, if a station retained 40 mainline flights per week for 9 months, that station would be converted back to mainline employees?
 
gaystudpilot
Posts: 307
Joined: Sat Dec 08, 2007 10:55 pm

Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Sun Sep 13, 2020 9:36 pm

TYWoolman wrote:
gaystudpilot wrote:
Agree that it was a well executed integration from many perspectives. I also believe DL did a tremendous job building the brand post integration.

I would, however, be curious to read the merger business case presented to the DL BOD, specifically regarding the TPAC network, market share and revenue potential. Given how DL’s TPAC network has evolved since the merger, I wonder how different it is today from the DL-NW business case presented.



That would be interesting for sure. Perhaps the business case was to eventually steal JAL away from American. We all know how that went. Not having JAL made the legacy Northwest Tokyo hub/Pacific network de-valued IMO.


My sense is there was more optimism for TPAC than what transpired. Building a fact base during due diligence can be challenging. Limited facts + assumptions + overly optimistic projections can create a business case far from reality. I wonder what was actually uncovered post deal. Certainly the eventual fate of NRT without a partner was built into the business case.

No doubt a play for JAL was factored in. Dismantling NRT and finding a new partner/developing a stronger existing partnership in a new market while trying to maintain combined corporate contracts, not lose newly combined market share and increase margins is not an attractive proposition. While DL+NW is incrementally better off from a TPAC profitability perspective (pre COVID-19) I believe there were aspirations of being a bigger, more profitable player than what transpired.
 
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NWAESC
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Sun Sep 13, 2020 9:37 pm

If memory serves, it had to be 70 mainline (or Compass) flights/week sustained over 9 mos. to reopen.
 
CMHARJ
Topic Author
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Sun Sep 13, 2020 9:41 pm

NWAESC wrote:
If memory serves, it had to be 70 mainline (or Compass) flights/week sustained over 9 mos. to reopen.


We all know that was never going to happen. If a station was able to hit that 70 mark in month 8, you know darn well in month 9, expect a few of those mainline flights to be replaced with 50 seaters.
 
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NWAESC
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Sun Sep 13, 2020 9:47 pm

Haha, Yep!
 
Lootess
Posts: 705
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Mon Sep 14, 2020 12:29 am

gaystudpilot wrote:
TYWoolman wrote:
gaystudpilot wrote:
Agree that it was a well executed integration from many perspectives. I also believe DL did a tremendous job building the brand post integration.

I would, however, be curious to read the merger business case presented to the DL BOD, specifically regarding the TPAC network, market share and revenue potential. Given how DL’s TPAC network has evolved since the merger, I wonder how different it is today from the DL-NW business case presented.



That would be interesting for sure. Perhaps the business case was to eventually steal JAL away from American. We all know how that went. Not having JAL made the legacy Northwest Tokyo hub/Pacific network de-valued IMO.


My sense is there was more optimism for TPAC than what transpired. Building a fact base during due diligence can be challenging. Limited facts + assumptions + overly optimistic projections can create a business case far from reality. I wonder what was actually uncovered post deal. Certainly the eventual fate of NRT without a partner was built into the business case.

No doubt a play for JAL was factored in. Dismantling NRT and finding a new partner/developing a stronger existing partnership in a new market while trying to maintain combined corporate contracts, not lose newly combined market share and increase margins is not an attractive proposition. While DL+NW is incrementally better off from a TPAC profitability perspective (pre COVID-19) I believe there were aspirations of being a bigger, more profitable player than what transpired.


If you remember this all started as early as the Delta CEO selection to replace Gerald Grinstein, and why the BOD chose Richard Anderson over COO James Whitehurst. One obviously had different merger thoughts than the other.

Personally I felt it was going to be successful when the Delta/Northwest pilots got their integration agreements well before the formal merger. Versus what we saw happen with the pilots between US Airways-America West.

Not oddly enough JAL-NW had a token relationship, aside from NRT interlining they allowed Worldperks redemptions on JAL. I still think they would have been better off with DL than AA.
 
wernerga3
Posts: 349
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Mon Sep 14, 2020 1:42 am

It's a shame Delta didn't take the initial NW 787s. They would've launched it instead of United, and went A350 instead.

Image
 
deltal1011man
Posts: 5399
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Mon Sep 14, 2020 3:09 am

N649DL wrote:
bourbon wrote:
Cointrin330 wrote:
12 years later, the DL/NW merger, which was widely panned by the business press when it was first announced, remains a text book case in how to merge two airlines. Sure, they had a lot of advantages going into it. They both filed Chapter 11 at roughly the same time. Their CEO's had enough knowledge of the other's operations. There was less overlap and an opportunity to deconstruct two hubs (MEM, CVG) and reassign the assets to other more profitable stations. Merging airlines is an extremely complex process and there are so many issues and tasks, many of which seem mundane, that, if not handled properly, can have a ripple effect on operations and the entire process can be unforgiving. DL/NW handled it very well. Of all the airline mergers in the US that happened since 2005 when the wave of consolidation kicked off with US/AW, the DL/NW one from a process standpoint, is a standout for all the right reasons. IMHO, AA/US comes in second. Although a forced marriage in some ways, from an execution standpoint, there were few disruptions that had a major impact on operations and the technology platform merger seemed quite smooth. UA/CO was, by contrast, a complete mess that took about 8 years to get the kinks out.

US/AA is one of the worst mergers in history ...


I thought UA and CO was worse. Everybody knows that they took the cheap route and took the worst from both airlines starting with the paint job. People have short term memories I guess. AA didn't have it's CEO forced to resign in embarrassment (yet.)

DL and NW was a world class merger that literally started out with the BOD in a conference room and sticking post-it notes on a wall outlining the best parts of each airline. They later went on to implement all of them and it worked. Many actually came from NW as did many of it's top level employees. DL apparently also stole quite a bit of talent from CO by offering them huge pay raises to lure them over before the merger.

DL and NW I really do think were planning this scenario out for a long while as both file for BK on the same day. DL did it's rebranding 2007, which I really do think the tail is supposed to represent the Northwest Compass. They probably knew then that they were going to eventually merge and got ahead of it with the subtle tilted Widget on the tail.

not trying to be rude, but one of the most uneducated conspiracy theories ever. I really don't get why it still sticks.

The US made drastic changes to its bankruptcy code/laws and Delta/Northwest waited till the last day to file before the law changed. This was mostly due to trying to work out a deal with its pilots in the hopes they wouldn't have to file. Nothing more, nothing less.
Not to mention that it completely ignores all sorts of anti-trust issues, different management teams than when the merger was announced etc. etc.


I still say to this day that had United not be larger or had its FAs and ACS/Ramp been non-union Delta would have gone that route. They went with the option that would leave them mostly non-union, IMO, while sacrificing a better network overall.
 
NYCVIE
Posts: 388
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Mon Sep 14, 2020 3:13 am

N649DL wrote:
Something else to consider is CO had it's chance to merge with NW (it seemed way too close in the late-1990s with it's code share agreement) and then DL swooped in. I wonder if they had done so what the CO/NW network would look like today? NW held that "Golden Share" rule as well. NW was also apparently very close to merging with Pan Am & incorporating KLM as well in 1989 but all talks bailed last second. In a book I read, Pan Am folks didn't get along with the Dutch and had trust issues with the banks to get it done.


I was actually randomly thinking about this today - what a CO/NW merger would have looked like. CLE still would have been de-hubbed but I wonder if MEM would have survived in some way or if DTW and MSP would have been larger than they are. CO/NW probably would have been a bad idea anyways, though, as they would have had an even bigger geographical dilemma than US, did with no hub West of Houston.
 
Lootess
Posts: 705
Joined: Sun May 13, 2018 6:15 am

Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Mon Sep 14, 2020 3:40 am

It comes in waves whether Delta should have kept the NW 788 order, they deferred it initially so they would have avoided the initial teething issues. Then on the other corner Richard was more than glad to take the first ever A330neos off the line.

NYCVIE wrote:
N649DL wrote:
Something else to consider is CO had it's chance to merge with NW (it seemed way too close in the late-1990s with it's code share agreement) and then DL swooped in. I wonder if they had done so what the CO/NW network would look like today? NW held that "Golden Share" rule as well. NW was also apparently very close to merging with Pan Am & incorporating KLM as well in 1989 but all talks bailed last second. In a book I read, Pan Am folks didn't get along with the Dutch and had trust issues with the banks to get it done.


I was actually randomly thinking about this today - what a CO/NW merger would have looked like. CLE still would have been de-hubbed but I wonder if MEM would have survived in some way or if DTW and MSP would have been larger than they are. CO/NW probably would have been a bad idea anyways, though, as they would have had an even bigger geographical dilemma than US, did with no hub West of Houston.


In a sense they were kind of trailing a marriage with the CO-NW "alliance". Support and first-class upgrades on either carrier, most NW hub flights had a CO codeshare, and not to mention they joined Skyteam at the same time. You'd see CO-AS logos at every NW gate at DTW, just like how it's DL-KL-AF today.
 
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Boeing757100
Posts: 741
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Re: DL/NW Merger....12 Years Later

Mon Sep 14, 2020 1:01 pm

TYWoolman wrote:
Boeing757100 wrote:
TYWoolman wrote:


Go to Detroit, close your eyes and pretend the engines you hear are Northwest 757-100s. That's what I would do.




You mean 757-200s?


Yes, or the 300s, but I thought you knew of another derivative based on your name.




I named myself after the proposed 757-100, which never really took off.

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