The consolidation of the American aviation industry takes many forms. In the wake of the failure of its negotiations with US Airways, United Airlines (UAL) resumed language with Continental Airlines to create the first global company to Delta Air Lines, with a market capitalization of $ 6.6 billion. As in previous discussions with US Airways, officially halted on April 22, United Airlines has still refused, this weekend, to confirm these negotiations. But, according to Bloomberg, who cites several sources close to the record, the proposed merger by Exchange of shares could be finalised in a week. General analysts believes the Continental-United Airlines merger, which had already been the subject of a first attempt in 2008, is one that offers the most benefits, both in terms of geographical complementarity and integration. But, given the multiple previous attempts, the result is not acquired.
"We look at the options and we will take any initiative that we believe in the best interest of our shareholders, customers and employees, has cautiously said, on 22 April, the pattern of Continental Airlines, Jeff Smisek. According to the envisaged scheme, it could become the CEO of the new set, while the pattern of UAL, Glenn Tilton, would inherit the Presidency. According to Bloomberg, the two companies would already reached an agreement in principle on an exchange of shares without the bonus of fusion, but have not yet arrested the exchange ratio.
With a workforce of 47,000 employees and a turnover of $ 16.3 billion in 2009, UAL displays a capitalization of $ 3.6 billion, significantly higher than that of Continental Airlines ($2.9 billion). The combination of the two companies would give birth to a set of 29 billion dollars in revenues, just in front of Delta Air Lines (28 billion of turnover).
"Now that there are more third party involved, things could move very quickly", said an analyst at New York. For its part, the CEO of US Airways, Doug Parker, made it clear that lack of agreement with UAL, his company intends to remain independent, at least in the foreseeable future. The merger of three numbers and four of the US aviation industry could give rise to a new giant, controlling 40 percent of Atlantic traffic and 53 of roads in the Pacific, with two "hubs" major on the East Coast, Washington, Dulles and Newark (New York). Although the two companies are still deficits, with a net loss of 651 million dollars for UAL and Continental Airlines $ 295 million in 2009, synergies should largely compensate for the costs of integration. Some experts believe, however, that the withdrawal of the US Airways set reduces the potential for UAL.
Hard experienced by the outbreak of the oil in 2008 and the financial crisis, the two American companies see the consolidation the only true "emergency exit". Ten years after a first attempt of reconciliation US Airways-UAL, retoquÃ©e by trade unions in 2001, they will have to show their employees that consolidation is the best way to ensure their recovery with fuel prices soaring.