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TWA772LR
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"What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

Sat Jun 11, 2016 5:25 am

What if we had a different combo of mergers during the Great Merger Mania of 2008-2013?

First proposal: NW/AA
Hubs in LAX, DTW, MSP, MEM, DFW, MIA, JFK, ORD, NRT, and a focus city in SEA. Huge Asian network, decent European network out of JFK, and awesome Latin America coverage, which NW had nearly 0. Large fleet of DC-9s being replaced by Airbii, and possibly AA 737s. Most likely didn't happen because of the MSP-ORD-DTW proximity and AAs bad financial situation at the time.

Second proposal: UA/DL
Hubs in LAX, SFO, NRT, ATL, DEN, ORD, SLC, ATL, CIN, JFK, and a focus city in BOS. Uniteds second-to-none Asia network coupled with DL's Latin network and 2 young-ish fleets would have a lot of flexibility, especially with 757s and DLs large regional fleet to further help UA make up for the 737 retirement. Most likely didn't happen with UA being in worse shape than AA at the time financially and bad labor relations, along with the proximity of SLC and DEN.

Third proposal: CO/US
Hubs in IAH, PHX, CLE, PHL, CLT, GUM and EWR. CO had the best Latin network west of the Mississippi, as well as the largest airline in NYC. US was on it's first big upswing in a long time. The downside is CO had an all Boeing fleet whereas US was mostly Airbus, and neither were particularly strong in Asia (CO had IAH-NRT and the rest of the Asian continent flights were all out of EWR). The closure of the CLE hub would've allowed some flexibility to stregthen the PHX hub out west or even start a focus city out west (CO wanted DEN really badly, and in fact were ready to pounce had UA gone under). CLT probably would have gotten the most reductions of the large hubs, but still retained some international longhaul to key cities, and PHL may have been reduced to mostly 757s and 767s for longhaul. Most likely didn't happen as CO recognized the need for a true Asian network and larger brand awareness.


What do y'all think?
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LAX772LR
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RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

Sat Jun 11, 2016 5:37 am

Probably better suited for the Hobby forum...


...but they probably could've made it work:

  • AA/NW would likely have the best network on paper, with major ops in every large state in the country.

  • UA/DL would come close, but would be conspicuously absent in Texas and the south-central. Major corporate culture class.

  • CO/US would be completely screwed. Highly regional, rift with redundant hubs, and highly leveraged fleet,
  • I myself, suspect a more prosaic motive... ~Thranduil
     
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    intotheair
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sat Jun 11, 2016 5:43 am

    Quoting LAX772LR (Reply 1):
    UA/DL would come close, but would be conspicuously absent in Texas and the south-central. Major corporate culture class.

    From what I remember, UA and DL were in serious discussions around 2006/7 but the culture issue was a big sticking point. That, along with the fact that UA didn't want to leave ORD, and DL didn't want to leave ATL. I remember Glenn Tilton saying shortly after the UA/CO merger was announced that he wanted UA to merge with someone, but that he wouldn't compromise on the merged entity being called UA and being based in Chicago. Everything else was negotiable to him.

    The OP has an interesting though experiment, though I don't see how CO and US would have ever been a likely merge. CO/NW was much more likely to happen.
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    grbauc
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sat Jun 11, 2016 5:46 am

    AA with NW um I like that one so so, way back when I was kinda hopping AA would pick up NW.
    The delta UA merger would of made one hell of beast.
    US/Co I agree with LAX772LR it would of been completely screwed.
     
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    Ytraveller
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sat Jun 11, 2016 5:48 am

    Quoting LAX772LR (Reply 1):
    Probably better suited for the Hobby forum...

    Where no one will read it...
     
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    intotheair
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sat Jun 11, 2016 5:51 am

    Oh, oh oh! Anyone also remember when US tried to pull a hostile takeover of DL? Those were interesting times.
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    UA444
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sat Jun 11, 2016 7:40 am

    UA and DL were close to merging in the late 1990s and were going to form a codeshare of some sort and the pilots shot it down.
     
    a380787
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sat Jun 11, 2016 8:31 am

    NW/AA would have 3 super large hubs in the Midwest - MSP ORD DTW. Particularly ORD+DTW would simultaneously vie to be THE pacific hub and THE Atlantic hub of the Midwest.

    UA/DL would have ORD JFK DEN over-shadowing CVG IAD SLC. As much as we love to say "relieve hub", the long term outcome still would be some form of rationalization. It would also have 3 of the best located mid con hubs - DEN for mountains, ORD for Midwest, and ATL for southeast

    CO/US would have crazy NYC between CO EWR and US LGA, plus hub / focus city presence in BOS PHL DCA, essentially locking down the entire Acela corridor. EWR and PHL would be hubs of 400+ flights each within stone throwing distance. However, it's sole presence in the Midwest would still be CLE, and for all practical purposes, non-competitive on west coast, Hawaii, and TPAC. It would've TLV coverage from both EWR and PHL, and not sure if both could survive.
     
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sat Jun 11, 2016 8:49 am

    Quoting intotheair (Reply 5):

    US+DL made little sense considering how much divesting would be required at LGA and DCA. A combined entity with no divesting would make those 2 a fortress hub overnight.

    Another strangeness would be the proximities of ATL+CLT. For all practical purposes, fares for LGA DCA and southeast would spike up to fortress levels.

    LAX would've been developed into the TPAC hub instead of SEA.
     
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sat Jun 11, 2016 8:55 am

    CO/US would be the perennial third and would be structurally weak in many parts of the country, but with blanket coverage of the Acela corridor plus CLT and IAH ... that would have still been a very powerdul network. Obviously nothing compared to the truly national networks all three have today, but nonetheless nothing to sneeze at.
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    johnclipper
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sat Jun 11, 2016 9:09 am

    UA/DL would have reunited PAN AM's route authorities...
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    klwright69
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sat Jun 11, 2016 9:17 am

    A trip down memory lane...I am pretty certain DL and CO were talking much earlier than that. I think it was the late 90's. This article is from 96.

    http://www.deseretnews.com/article/5...TINENTAL-MERGER-IS-OFF.html?pg=all

    Also the CO people were just going to get a raw deal so it didn't move forward. I remember this clearly, the offer was unattractive to CO. I remember reading a WSJ article saying the DL/CO merger would be good because both airlines have some overlap and that would support the overall goal of trimming overcapacity in the US airline market. Overlap meant JFK/EWR and two Ohio hubs CVG/CLE. Also at this time DL still had a focus city in DFW (not really a hub) and of course IAH for CO. So DFW/IAH were lumped in as overlap hubs. I remember DL having regional jets from DFW to both IAH/HOU and DEN in 2002 (I took the flights). I was unable to find this article on google, it's a very long time ago.

    DL and UA would have been an amazing combination. But I agree, which brand and name were going to survive? I see that being a deal breaker as pointed out above. But DL and UA might have been too big and might have required large divestiture of assets to competitors as the government mind order.

    AA/NW that would be interesting.

    US/CO? That's just picking the crumbs up off the floor. CLT would have been great for CO. US would have gotten some good international routes. But it would have been a bit too geographically locked in.
     
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sat Jun 11, 2016 9:41 am

    Quoting intotheair (Reply 5):
    Oh, oh oh! Anyone also remember when US tried to pull a hostile takeover of DL?

    I thought of that, too - and I am sure DL is still happy it never happened. US didn't bring anything to the table; UA (and ultimately NW) would bring Asia, which is what DL was really missing.
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sat Jun 11, 2016 12:36 pm

    Of the three hypothetical mergers AA/NW I think would have been the best match. UA/DL would have been too huge and too very very diff cultures. Look how badly UA/CO culture clashed it would have been even worse and on a bigger scale! As noted CO/US would have been a weak player. Nothing on the west coast with overlap EWR/PHL. Perhaps CO/US/AS could have made an interesting combo.

    One positive CO/US would have had was at least everyone involved already knew how to use SHARES! Lol
     
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sat Jun 11, 2016 12:57 pm

    I wonder how this would have shaken out alliance wise.
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sat Jun 11, 2016 1:23 pm

    Given that UA/US looked at merging and CO/DL were close, if those mergers had happened then AA/NW would have been quite natural. What intrigues me is the ORD/DTW/MSP dynamic - and if it happened in the early 2000s throw STL into the mix!

    In my view, STL would have been toast a lot sooner. I wonder though whether a combined AA/NW would have pulled down ORD (either focus city or completely) where they would be jostling with UA to focus on DTW and MSP where they would be a clear No. 1.

    AA/NW would also bring an interesting alliance dynamic. The NW/KL relationship was extremely well entrenched, so if the AF/KL merger had happened already would AA have jumped ship to SkyTeam if it was before AA/BA got ATI? If it was all still to play for in Europe (and again before AA/BA got ATI), would BA have worked harder to get a merger with KL right? That would have been extremely interesting to see AA/NW + BA/KL together. You'd have likely seen AF/IB forced together - and I wonder what state IB would be in if that had happened!
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    mtnwest1979
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sat Jun 11, 2016 1:46 pm

    Do you think if AA and NW had combined, they would have kept both ORD and MSP as hubs? MSP would have dwindled down
    and DTW probably stagnant. I certainly couldn't see DTW MSP and ORD maintaining as the hubs they were at the time.
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    IndianicWorld
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sat Jun 11, 2016 1:54 pm

    The more I read this thread, the more I feel nostelgic  

    The last 15 years have seen dramatic changes across the globe for aviation, but the US has certainly had significant movement.

    To think how much more diverse things were back then it is sad in a way but at the same time the built in inefficiencies were evident.
     
    9w748capt
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sat Jun 11, 2016 2:00 pm

    More importantly - a NW/AA tie-up would've dominated my hometown AZO!  
     
    a380787
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sat Jun 11, 2016 3:00 pm

    UA+US fails to solve 2 of PMUA's biggest deficits - LATAM and NYC. The PMUS presence at LGA, maybe 25% or so market share, wouldn't provide sufficient synergy with PMUA at JFK to make a meaningful player beyond select markets.
     
    CIDFlyer
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sat Jun 11, 2016 3:12 pm

    Quoting FlyCaledonian (Reply 15):
    Given that UA/US looked at merging and CO/DL were close, if those mergers had happened then AA/NW would have been quite natural. What intrigues me is the ORD/DTW/MSP dynamic - and if it happened in the early 2000s throw STL into the mix!

    And lest we not forget MEM down the road from STL. So AA/NW would have had MSP, ORD, DTW, STL, MEM and DFW pretty much competing for the same traffic flows. It definitely would have been mid continent heavy. STL and MEM probably would have gone for sure, but as people have pointed out how would MSP/ORD/DTW been handled? One would think you just cant walk away from Chicago, yet MSP & DTW are fortresses where you could be #1.


    One combo I am surprised was never considered was NW/US. Those airlines were extremely complimentary. Hubs in MSP, DTW, PHL, DCA, CLT, MEM, PHX, focus in SEA. MSP/DTW/MEM, would have been the middle US needed for its barbell route map (PHX out west and CLT/PHL in east).

    Its always fun to see what could have played out. I also wished US would have looked at TWA before AA. STL would have also provided them a mid continent hub as well. But they were dancing with UA at the time.

    All in all what we have now with the combo's we ended up with seems like the best logical pairings looking back at it all.
     
    deltal1011man
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sat Jun 11, 2016 4:23 pm

    Quoting TWA772LR (Thread starter):

    Second proposal: UA/DL
    Hubs in LAX, SFO, NRT, ATL, DEN, ORD, SLC, ATL, CIN, JFK, and a focus city in BOS. Uniteds second-to-none Asia network coupled with DL's Latin network and 2 young-ish fleets would have a lot of flexibility, especially with 757s and DLs large regional fleet to further help UA make up for the 737 retirement. Most likely didn't happen with UA being in worse shape than AA at the time financially and bad labor relations, along with the proximity of SLC and DEN.

    This is really the merger I wanted to see happen. I think they fit better than DL/NW, JMO.

    Quoting a380787 (Reply 7):

    UA/DL would have ORD JFK DEN over-shadowing CVG IAD SLC. As much as we love to say "relieve hub", the long term outcome still would be some form of rationalization. It would also have 3 of the best located mid con hubs - DEN for mountains, ORD for Midwest, and ATL for southeast

    IAD/SLC/CVG were done if this merger happened.

    Quoting a380787 (Reply 8):

    Also the balance sheet would have been a complete cluster. IIRC the net debt of the combined company would have been over 30 Billion. Delta leadership made it pretty clear the airline would drastically cut capacity and probably end up going back into BK.

    I would love to have an off the record talk with Parker about it. I feel like the man can run an airline but I really don't understand what in the hell he thought DL/US was going to be. All of US's hubs over lapped with a DL hub. (PHX/SLC, PHL/JFK, CLT/ATL)

    Quoting klwright69 (Reply 11):
    Also at this time DL still had a focus city in DFW (not really a hub) and of course IAH for CO. So DFW/IAH were lumped in as overlap hubs. I remember DL having regional jets from DFW to both IAH/HOU and DEN in 2002 (I took the flights). I was unable to find this article on google, it's a very long time ago.

    Not really a hub? 300 or so flights a day is one hell of a focus city.......
     
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    mayor
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sat Jun 11, 2016 4:26 pm

    Quoting klwright69 (Reply 11):
    Also at this time DL still had a focus city in DFW (not really a hub)

    REALLY?? Since when was DFW NOT a hub for DL (in that time period)?
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    LAX772LR
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sat Jun 11, 2016 4:42 pm

    Quoting intotheair (Reply 2):
    From what I remember, UA and DL were in serious discussions around 2006/7 but the culture issue was a big sticking point

    you're about 8yrs behind. They had the most intensive discussions circa 1999, and even began a domestic FFP arrangement... but nothing became of it.


    Quoting Ytraveller (Reply 4):
    Where no one will read it

    Then why have it?
    I myself, suspect a more prosaic motive... ~Thranduil
     
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    mayor
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sat Jun 11, 2016 4:46 pm

    Quoting LAX772LR (Reply 23):

    you're about 8yrs behind. They had the most intensive discussions circa 1999, and even began a domestic FFP arrangement... but nothing became of it.

    Also in 1966, between Mr. Woolman and Bob Six of CO.........again, the culture was the sticking point, both leaders wanted to maintain their airline as the survivor.
    "A committee is a group of the unprepared, appointed by the unwilling, to do the unnecessary"----Fred Allen
     
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    intotheair
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sat Jun 11, 2016 5:28 pm

    Quoting LAX772LR (Reply 23):
    you're about 8yrs behind. They had the most intensive discussions circa 1999, and even began a domestic FFP arrangement... but nothing became of it.

    No, there were also some serious discussions again around 2007/8 before DL chose NW as its suitor.

    From 2008:
    Delta-United merger rumors fly | The Denver Post
    http://www.denverpost.com/2008/01/10/delta-united-merger-rumors-fly/

    Quote:
    The Wall Street Journal reported online Thursday that Delta directors will consider today whether to allow the airline’s chief executive to begin formal merger discussions with United parent UAL Corp. and Northwest Airlines Corp., planning to eventually choose between the two.

    Shares of all three airlines rose sharply Thursday, with United shares closing up 23.7 percent, Northwest up 32 percent and Delta shares up 18.2 percent.

    Delta’s board may decline the request, send Delta executives back to do more work or approve talks with one carrier, and if talks start they may not yield a deal, according to the Journal.

    In November, hedge fund Pardus Capital Management urged Delta to merge with United. Delta said it had formed a special board committee to review and analyze strategic options, including potential consolidation transactions.

    Ultimately, history played out in the most logical way. NW was always considered to be the more likely pick, though I guess DL always wanted to keep some options open, just like how UA was still talking to US about merging when CO was showing cold feet.

    In my opinion, I'm glad it played out the way it did. I see DL/UA being a bigger disaster than UA/CO. The only way I wish it played out differently is that I wish UA/CO integrated better and with different leadership. The AA/US tie-up also still doesn't sit all that well with me, and I wish we saw AS tie-up with HA, and VX with B6 instead of AS and VX. But I digress...
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    lhcvg
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sat Jun 11, 2016 6:13 pm

    About the culture clash aspect of a UA/DL tie-up, what is the "Cliff's Notes" of that? Is this just another case of the toxic internal culture at PMUA, or is there a specific aspect that would have made DL a particularly bad partner?
     
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sat Jun 11, 2016 7:07 pm

    Quoting CIDFlyer (Reply 20):

    NW+US would be zero long haul hubs from the top 5 largest metros - NYC LAX CHI WAS SFO+SJC, and a lack of truly optimized hub for both TPAC and LatAm.
     
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    intotheair
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sat Jun 11, 2016 9:55 pm

    Quoting lhcvg (Reply 26):

    About the culture clash aspect of a UA/DL tie-up, what is the "Cliff's Notes" of that? Is this just another case of the toxic internal culture at PMUA, or is there a specific aspect that would have made DL a particularly bad partner?

    I think a lot of it had to do with unions. UA is heavily unionized, and in comparison DL is not. NW was heavily unionized as well, though I don't think to the same extent as UA was/is. There were also a lot of other differences. UA was a founding member of Star; DL Skyteam; UA didn't want to leave Chicago; DL didn't want to leave ATL; DL wouldn't want to give up Deltamatic. There were also a lot of potential antitrust concerns with UA and DL, particularly at JFK and LAX.

    I don't think UA and DL ever got into advanced negotiations, but DL and NW just made more sense: same alliance, same partners, complementary hubs, and complementary route systems. Fleet commonality was a bigger issue with DL/NW than it would have been at DL/UA, but DL amazingly turned its varied fleet into one of its biggest strengths.
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sat Jun 11, 2016 11:50 pm

    I always thoughts CO's best option would actually have been to let AA and UA merge and then pick up UA's ORD and LAX hubs/respective networks plus the LHR/NRT overlap. It would have left CO four really powerful hubs in NYC, HOU, CHI and LA. Sure it would have made them smaller than "UAA" and DL/NW but without all the headache.

    Incidentally, in that situation, UAA would have been pretty darn amazing with IAD, MIA, ORD, DFW, DEN, SFO and LAX plus small/focus hubs in JFK, LGA, LHR and NRT. (That said, if people think UA/CO was a labor mess, AA/UA would be a night mare of epic proportions.)
     
    Dreamflight767
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sat Jun 11, 2016 11:54 pm

    Maybe this deserves its own topic but I thought HA/VX would be a good merge.
     
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sun Jun 12, 2016 12:44 am

    Even if a DL/UA merger had been proposed, at the end of the day it wouldn't have been approved by the Govt. on anti-competitive grounds as both carriers were too large. The other scenarios, however, could have played out.
     
    visakow
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sun Jun 12, 2016 12:55 am

    Really,

    The biggest isnt't enough. I miss the "Meatball" & the "Tulip"! . A super airline will never exists, not in the terms your thinkin of. Emirates seems to have the majority but I always envisioned something based outta Volgograd, Russia. We all have dreams.
     
    OSL777FLYER
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sun Jun 12, 2016 12:58 am

    Interesting topic,

    My view is that AA or UA together with NW would not have worked due to cannibalization. You would then have had 3 major hubs with MSP, ORD and DTW all within a 500 mile distance. Too close.

    The only real alternative for NW was DL.

    UA/DL would probably not have been allowed by the competition authorities.
     
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sun Jun 12, 2016 1:29 am

    Quoting OSL777FLYER (Reply 33):
    The only real alternative for NW was DL.

    There was also CO. NW and CO were pretty close for a long time, and for a while, NW/CO looked more likely to happen than DL/NW. In terms of route network, NW/CO would have been great internationally, but really poor domestically with DTW and CLE so close and nothing in the western U.S.
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    a380787
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sun Jun 12, 2016 1:37 am

    Quoting intotheair (Reply 34):

    NW+CO would miss out on both California and the southeast (let's not pretend MEM or GSP are viable)
     
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    antoniemey
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sun Jun 12, 2016 2:09 am

    Quoting a380787 (Reply 35):
    (let's not pretend MEM or GSP are viable)

    You mean GSO? Because that's where CO set up a minihub in the mid-90s. I was there (I was 10, but I was there).
    Make something Idiot-proof, and the Universe will make a more inept idiot.
     
    a380787
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sun Jun 12, 2016 2:12 am

    Quoting antoniemey (Reply 36):

    Yea GSO, bad typo
     
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    jetblastdubai
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sun Jun 12, 2016 2:26 am

    Quoting a380787 (Reply 35):
    NW+CO would miss out on both California and the southeast

    Interesting observation.

    In a purely defensive (spoiler) move, since NW and DL already merged, had UA and US actually got together, this would have left only AA and CO as the remaining major merger partners. The overlap in an AA/CO tie-up would have surely been shot down early on by the DOT. It might have been worth it for UA/US to divest a bunch of DCA slots to approve their original merger. It's not like US kept all their DCA slots after their merger with AA anyway.

    With AA/CO co-located hubs in EWR and JFK plus DFW and IAH something would have to give. They were both the largest carriers in Latin and South America so another monopoly hurdle to clear. This merger would probably have been DOA leaving only 2 mega carriers (DL and UA) with AA and CO a distant 3rd and 4th. Having to de-hub CLE would be nothing compared to having to de-hub or relegate to "focus city" status for JFK and/or IAH assuming that EWR and DFW would be the surviving super hubs.
     
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    intotheair
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sun Jun 12, 2016 2:49 am

    Quoting jetblastdubai (Reply 38):
    It might have been worth it for UA/US to divest a bunch of DCA slots to approve their original merger. It's not like US kept all their DCA slots after their merger with AA anyway.

    When UA and US were in discussions in the early 2000s, UA/US proposed spinning off the DCA operations into an airline called "DCAir," which would have been partly or wholly owned and operated by AA. Needless to say, the DOJ didn't find this sort of simulated competition as an acceptable response to antitrust concerns.
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    TWA772LR
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sun Jun 12, 2016 3:03 am

    Quoting intotheair (Reply 34):
    There was also CO. NW and CO were pretty close for a long time, and for a while, NW/CO looked more likely to happen than DL/NW. In terms of route network, NW/CO would have been great internationally, but really poor domestically with DTW and CLE so close and nothing in the western U.S.

    I would've loved that. The 2 airlines I grew up with in one roof. CLE was on the decline in the 2008-era so it would've been closed anyway. I really think if CO mereged with anyone else by UA, that they could've made a good west coast hub somewhere out of the assets that came from CLE. SFO or even SJC probably would've been CO/XXs chance at making that happen, either breaking the UA fortress, or hitting the airport that was hit the least by the recession (outside of IAH).
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    jetblastdubai
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sun Jun 12, 2016 3:15 am

    Quoting intotheair (Reply 39):
    UA/US proposed spinning off the DCA operations into an airline called "DCAir," which would have been partly or wholly owned and operated by AA.

    I was under the impression that a large portion of the DCA slots, equipment and other US assets were proposed to go to BET-TV CEO, Robert Johnson's DCAir and not be part of AA. The DOT might have had reservations about the survival chances of a start-up carrier and didn't want to see a liquidation in the near future only to see UA/US pick up those same assets at a fire sale.

    http://www.blackenterprise.com/mag/will-dc-air-fly/
     
    global1
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sun Jun 12, 2016 4:06 am

    I recall that the negotiations between AA and NW failed primarily on the price that Al Checci and Gary Wilson were trying to extract for NWA.

    At the time I was disappointed. However, in retrospect, the NWA flight attendants may very well have suffered the fate that awaited TWA. There were no protections in place for 'fair and equitable' seniority integration at the time.
     
    strfyr51
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sun Jun 12, 2016 4:27 am

    Logistically? The way the mergers worked out? Were the best for the industry.
    United would have been in equally good shape with CO or US
    American would have been ok with US or NW and Delta would be ok with NW, CO or US.
    Only AA and CO, or DL and UA would have met regulatory hurdles and that isn't the way it worked out..
     
    lhcvg
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sun Jun 12, 2016 4:58 am

    Quoting intotheair (Reply 28):

    Thanks for that! It does make a lot of sense given both the structural issues (CHI vs ATL, etc.) and the union vs. non-union culture clash would definitely have been problematic. I always forget that part about DL frankly.
     
    klwright69
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sun Jun 12, 2016 1:57 pm

    Quoting mayor (Reply 22):
    Quoting klwright69 (Reply 11):
    Also at this time DL still had a focus city in DFW (not really a hub)

    REALLY?? Since when was DFW NOT a hub for DL (in that time period)?

    Sorry you really got me there. It was a hub. But I passed through it then, and it was really only just an RJ hub. But yes it was a hub. I was debating whether or not to call it one when I was writing it. It was kind of cool that DL went to DEN, IAH, and HOU from DFW at that time.
     
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    mayor
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sun Jun 12, 2016 4:06 pm

    Quoting klwright69 (Reply 45):

    Quoting mayor (Reply 22):
    Quoting klwright69 (Reply 11):
    Also at this time DL still had a focus city in DFW (not really a hub)

    REALLY?? Since when was DFW NOT a hub for DL (in that time period)?

    Sorry you really got me there. It was a hub. But I passed through it then, and it was really only just an RJ hub. But yes it was a hub. I was debating whether or not to call it one when I was writing it. It was kind of cool that DL went to DEN, IAH, and HOU from DFW at that time.

    And SLC, ORD and of course ATL.......also LAX & SFO.........most of the larger stations were mainline flights. I think you may have gotten the impression that it was only an RJ hub because the regional flights all operated out of the satellite terminal, "Easy Street" while the mainlines operated out of the main terminal.
    "A committee is a group of the unprepared, appointed by the unwilling, to do the unnecessary"----Fred Allen
     
    mpdpilot
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Sun Jun 12, 2016 5:23 pm

    Quoting FlyCaledonian (Reply 15):
    AA/NW would also bring an interesting alliance dynamic. The NW/KL relationship was extremely well entrenched, so if the AF/KL merger had happened already would AA have jumped ship to SkyTeam if it was before AA/BA got ATI? If it was all still to play for in Europe (and again before AA/BA got ATI), would BA have worked harder to get a merger with KL right? That would have been extremely interesting to see AA/NW + BA/KL together. You'd have likely seen AF/IB forced together - and I wonder what state IB would be in if that had happened!

    That's interesting, I think that had AA and NW merged, I think you would have seen KL and BA merge instead of KL and AF. And I think that would be even more interesting than AA/NW. Think of how strong BA/KL would have been. Arguably the two strongest airlines across the Atlantic at the time and the two strongest airlines in the British isles. It would have been interesting.
    One mile of highway gets you one mile, one mile of runway gets you anywhere.
     
    F9Animal
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Mon Jun 13, 2016 12:49 am

    I remember when UA and US tried in the early 2,000's? I think it wold have been a good merger at the time. Didn't the DOJ jump in and block it? I wonder how things might be today had it worked? What would America West have done? Maybe go after TWA? I always thought America West and TWA would have been a healthier combo.
    I Am A Different Animal!!
     
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    TWA772LR
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    RE: "What If?" NW/AA. UA/DL, And CO/US

    Mon Jun 13, 2016 3:40 am

    Quoting F9Animal (Reply 48):
    I always thought America West and TWA would have been a healthier combo.

    They were getting pretty cozy in the 1990s, and a merger was strongly speculated. Had 9/11 not happened, I would say that a UA/TW merger would've been great. TW desperately needed an Asia network and it would've reinvigorated their LAX hub. UA was strong in JFK at the time, but on the decline, both were actually, so little, if not at all, divesting would have been necessary. The only tricky part would have been what to do with STL. It's close to ORD and DEN. However, 9/11 did happen, and AA was barely able to swallow TWA; looking at what happened to UA post-9/11, United definitely would have gone under.

    Looking at a then-possible UA/AA scenario would have made an amazing combo as far as network is concerned. Hubs in NRT, SFO, LAX, DEN, DFW, ORD, IAD, MIA and JFK. AA in LAX and ORD probably would've been forced to be divested, but with that amount of aircraft and other capital available, they could've easily made a fortress hub somewhere else, or used to augment existing hubs.
    When wasn't America great?


    The thoughts and opinions shared under this username are mine and are not influenced by my employer.

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