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Texas-Based American Airlines Closer To Merger With US Airlines
More than a year after filing bankruptcy, and months of negotiating with unions, the decision on the future of Fort Worth-based American Airlines appears to be only days away.
Sources tell KTVT in Fort Worth that the board of directors of AMR, American's parent company, will be meeting Monday to discuss the future of the airline and a merger with US Airways.
A deal could be announced as early as the next day. Analysts say all of the pieces appear to be falling into place.
Mark Drusch, a former executive at Delta and Continental Airlines, says months of confidential discussions point to a deal.
Just weeks after holding a splashy announcement unveiling American's new logo and paint scheme, sources say CEO Tom Horton will likely move out of the day to day managing of the new combined airline, and instead move to a seat on the board of directors.
US Airways' CEO Douglas Parker will likely run the new airline.
Sources say there were concerns that if Horton stays on as CEO, there could be operational problems such as delayed and cancelled flights American experienced last fall.
"You're looking at what's best for the combined company and right now. It looks like the US Airways management taking charge is what unions and creditors want," Drusch said.
Sources say US Airways and its shareholders may get about 30 percent of the new airline with AMR creditors getting about 70 percent.
Drusch says US Airways' strong 4th quarter profits can't be ignored in this deal.
"At the end of the day, the US Airways shareholders are going to get more now than they would have one year ago, six months ago, three months ago," Drusch said.
Both airlines have declined comment.
Most likely a merged airline would continue to be called American and remain based in Fort Worth. Drusch believes a merger could bring additional flights to DFW airport.