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View Full Version : AirTran future?


grasshopper
08-23-2007, 11:38 AM
Hey gang...what do you see in the crystal ball with regards to AirTran post Midwest mess? Long term?

Thanks!


SherpaLifter
08-23-2007, 06:13 PM
The Good: We have 65 B-737-700's to be delivered over the next 5 years. Profitable every year since 2001 (only airline beside SWA that has consistently made money since (9/11). Debt is relatively low and non-fuel CASM is best in industry which means we can compete well even in a down economy. Any change to age 60 retirement age will have little impact here.
Marketing seems to know what they are doing, which is a very good thing. Long term prospects are as good as anyone else's if we can remain independent and grow outside of ATL. Balance sheet is strong (for an airline) and profits continue to be forecast through next year.

The Problems: Anyone hired in the last year will not upgrade to captain without further aircraft orders. Expect to be in the right seat for a long time. We are out of gates in ATL. That means we have to find other cities to fly the 65 aircraft to and from. The Midwest deal offered a good solution to developing a non-ATL hub. However, you never want to overpay in any deal so maybe it's a good thing it failed. Union leadership has failed the pilot group in the current round of negotiations and the company has taken advantage of all the turmoil. Look for a recall of the union pres/vice pres to be successful. New TA (or TA2 as it is being called) is not much of an improvement. I bet it fails as well if they ever put it out for a vote. Junior pilot group would not fair well if we were to be acquired by another carrier.

grasshopper
08-23-2007, 07:42 PM
Thanks Sherpa! That was exactly the kind of info I needed. Any speculations that they will be bought?


Boogie Nights
08-24-2007, 12:11 PM
I do not think this deal is over yet........


"American Antitrust Institute president Albert Foer says: "I don't see how Northwest can invest 'passively' in a rival." Raymond James & Associates analyst Jim Parker suggests Northwest is only using TPG as "a front" to buy Midwest and keep AirTran's low-fares competition out of its home region. "



JP Morgan analyst Jamie Baker suggests AirTran does not need Midwest and will seek larger deals within the next two years. AirTran had tried in late 2004 to buy ATA Airlines and its Chicago Midway hub, but private equity firm Matlin Patterson instead purchased the carrier in a deal including codeshare partner Southwest Airlines

Midwest Airlines sale could lead to merger


McClatchy Newspapers
Published Monday, August 20, 2007 (http://columbiatribune.com/2007/Aug/20070820Busiindex.asp)

MILWAUKEE - Midwest Airlines will continue to fly solo with its impending sale to an investors group, but the transaction might eventually deliver Milwaukee’s hometown airline to another company with a less-appealing reputation.
Northwest Airlines Corp. could eventually take over Midwest Air Group Inc., corporate parent of Midwest Airlines and Midwest Connect, for Midwest Air’s new owner to cash out its investment, it was disclosed Friday.
Northwest is part of an investors group, organized by TPG Capital, that has agreed to buy Midwest Air for $17 a share, or $450 million. That sale, announced late Thursday night, requires shareholder and regulatory approval and is expected to close by the end of the year. The sale to TPG Capital, a private equity firm based in Fort Worth, Texas, will allow Midwest Airlines and Midwest Connect to keep their identities as independent carriers, said Timothy Hoeksema, Midwest Air chairman and chief executive officer



I read yesterday but can't find an arcticle from TPG saying the investment group could be looking at a cash deal for their part of Midwest, leaving NWA with ownership. This buyout was obiviously a veiled takeover by NWA to keep AIRTRAN out. This still has to pass antitrust test.
I think the dicision is not in. If I had it I would sell MEH while it is high because if this does not pass the antitrust then it may become a fire sale.

GuardDawg14
08-26-2007, 06:31 PM
How long do you think it will take to upgrade nowadays???

rvr350
08-26-2007, 08:43 PM
In the schoolhouse, they'll tell you upgrade expect to be less than 3 years (yeah, right), but optimistically, i'd give 5-6 years if you're hired this year.

FliFast
08-27-2007, 10:58 AM
Boogie,

Good posting and good info. But rhetorically, if Air Tran bought Midwest how would that pass the anti-trust test ?

Thx,

FF

320ToBearz
08-27-2007, 06:30 PM
I do not think this deal is over yet........


"American Antitrust Institute president Albert Foer says: "I don't see how Northwest can invest 'passively' in a rival." Raymond James & Associates analyst Jim Parker suggests Northwest is only using TPG as "a front" to buy Midwest and keep AirTran's low-fares competition out of its home region. "



JP Morgan analyst Jamie Baker suggests AirTran does not need Midwest and will seek larger deals within the next two years. AirTran had tried in late 2004 to buy ATA Airlines and its Chicago Midway hub, but private equity firm Matlin Patterson instead purchased the carrier in a deal including codeshare partner Southwest Airlines

Midwest Airlines sale could lead to merger


McClatchy Newspapers
Published Monday, August 20, 2007 (http://columbiatribune.com/2007/Aug/20070820Busiindex.asp)

MILWAUKEE - Midwest Airlines will continue to fly solo with its impending sale to an investors group, but the transaction might eventually deliver Milwaukee’s hometown airline to another company with a less-appealing reputation.
Northwest Airlines Corp. could eventually take over Midwest Air Group Inc., corporate parent of Midwest Airlines and Midwest Connect, for Midwest Air’s new owner to cash out its investment, it was disclosed Friday.
Northwest is part of an investors group, organized by TPG Capital, that has agreed to buy Midwest Air for $17 a share, or $450 million. That sale, announced late Thursday night, requires shareholder and regulatory approval and is expected to close by the end of the year. The sale to TPG Capital, a private equity firm based in Fort Worth, Texas, will allow Midwest Airlines and Midwest Connect to keep their identities as independent carriers, said Timothy Hoeksema, Midwest Air chairman and chief executive officer



I read yesterday but can't find an arcticle from TPG saying the investment group could be looking at a cash deal for their part of Midwest, leaving NWA with ownership. This buyout was obiviously a veiled takeover by NWA to keep AIRTRAN out. This still has to pass antitrust test.
I think the dicision is not in. If I had it I would sell MEH while it is high because if this does not pass the antitrust then it may become a fire sale.

Boogie,

So SWA "passively" invests in ATA, at a time when ATA was larger than Midwest, with a private equity firm at a much larger airport MDW, but NWA cannot? Yeah right.

In addition, Oberstar is from which state? Sen. Kohl likes the fact that Midwest is independent.

CarlSpackler
08-28-2007, 08:27 AM
Midwest ain't gonna happen in any capacity. AirTran will continue smart growth and "hopefully" open new domiciles soon. Merging with another company is possibly in the cards though. Frontier has been mentioned about 1000 times. That one would take a lot of work though. Gotta get rid of the bus and put 73's in it's place. There goes our 65 more airframes and growth slows at the tranz. As a junior FO I hope we go it alone. That's the best chance for upgrade and QOL. My crystal ball caught a cold as of late so who the F knows.

First item on the agenda is to vote HELL NO for the newest, newest, newest TA. :rolleyes:

grasshopper
08-30-2007, 04:35 PM
Thanks Carl and rvr...good info...good luck on taking down the new...err...newest TA! :D

embatp
08-30-2007, 07:16 PM
why does everyone assume we would not get rid of the 717? i know there isn't really a market for it, but i thinks a combined airbus/737 fllet would make more sense, as far as range etc. goes...you cant sub a 717 for a 737 on a long flight but you could a 319/320 for a 737...

cactusmike
08-30-2007, 10:30 PM
I think it is interesting that AirTran is going to start MKE to PHX. Sound like what NWA used to do to Reno Air.

BTW, our CEO, Doogie Parker had a poor opinion of AirTran's prospects, saying that they have too many jets coming without enough places to put them. I don't think much of Parker, he has trouble enough running his own airline, but it is an interesting question.

flyinDego
09-30-2007, 07:27 PM
speaking of growth, any words about hires? Still doing so or not?

RobLAX
09-30-2007, 08:52 PM
Anyone look at the AAI stock? It is not even double digits! There is going to be very little growth and buying another airline...lol. Air Tran is Value Jet hiding behind the name FYI.

TRS531
10-01-2007, 01:48 AM
8 straight years of profitability, 137 airplanes with 65 more coming, 8 new cities this year,etc, etc....I guess "Value Jet(spelled Valujet)" is doing pretty well...hard to believe that merger happened 9 years ago.

I think we'll be fine....

RobLAX
10-01-2007, 07:23 AM
Yeah having the second lowest stock price I am sure valuejet aka airtran will be fine...NOT. Jet who (blue) started off the same way and now they are struggling. Grasshopper go to LUV, a legacy or cargo. They have hit bottom and are back on top. AAI is just going to swim at the bottom until the doors close or someone big buys them out (AA TWA). Think long term rather then short term! Good luck.

PS If it helps I had 3 freinds that initially went to AAI. They are now with a legacy and LUV. Actions speak louder then any words.

grasshopper
10-01-2007, 09:19 AM
thanks rob...already done!

TRS531
10-01-2007, 11:32 AM
So companies like Jetblue and AirTran who have stock prices hovering below $10 will be gone in the somewhat distant future?....i fail to see the whole using the stock price as the only determinent of what an airline's future is or will be....who would want to buy any type of airline stock anyways?

The whole "oh it's Valujet" argument is so 9 years ago....we're far from swimming at the bottom. That's your opinion and you're obviously entitled to it but I work there 5 sometimes 6 days a week.......there's a lot of good people here.....yeah it has it's issues but what airline doesn't. What it has become versus 9 or 10 years ago when it was "Valujet" is like night and day.....that company died a long time ago.

We won't be shutting the doors anytime soon....if you look at our balance sheet, we are actually a great takeover possibility....strong financials, young fleet, more a/c orders, strong route structure, ATL hub, etc, etc....so i do agree with you to a point that one of the "big boys" could be eyeing us for the future....

tazzzzed
10-01-2007, 12:57 PM
last i heard, minimum of 15 new birds next year. another 80 plus guys between now and end of the year. and about 300 forecast for next year. the next city is to be announced shortly and we hear speaking Spanish will be helpful. roblax needs to stop drinking the coolaide where ever he is and get over it already.

RobLAX
10-01-2007, 02:45 PM
Well TRS if you don't think stock is important just look at the history books. They speak for themselves. Whether the doors close or a big boy buys AAI that is for the future but AAI will never be a legacy or LUV, obviously.

taz, airplanes and new hires don't mean much and surely won't prevent a purchase. Remember TWA, they were hiring and taking on 717's...oops. Guess they should have had more coolaide hahaha.

tazzzzed
10-01-2007, 03:36 PM
now you are comparing us to TWA...... what's next.... get a clue already.me thinks u are related to skyhigh!

aupilot
10-01-2007, 03:56 PM
Let's try not to make this message board into another flightinfo. The one thing I have liked so far is there is no airline bashing over here just a place to come and find some good info. Try to keep it that way. Thanks.

RobLAX
10-01-2007, 03:56 PM
AAI would never be like TWA thats for sure!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

RobLAX
10-01-2007, 03:59 PM
I agree aupilot. When a poor pilot is trying to get info about a career path it is unfortunate a guy paints this pretty picture rather then the a real one!!!! I am glad grasshopper made a wise decision rather than a foolish one.

FliFast
10-02-2007, 06:17 AM
Remember TWA, they were hiring and taking on 717's...oops. Guess they should have had more coolaide hahaha.

Pretty ignorant quote.

TWA was a world class airline with a storied, historical past that was robbed, raped, and finally extinguished by the greedy.

FF

RobLAX
10-02-2007, 06:34 AM
Trust me I know that more then you will ever know! How is it ignorant? That is what really happened! My best friend was hired into the 717 and is still waiting for a recall...7 years later!!!!!!! Obviously you didn't read the comments above lol. Read the book not the cover oh wise one.

FliFast
10-02-2007, 06:42 AM
How is it ignorant? That is what really happened! My best friend was hired into the 717 and is still waiting for a recall...7 years later!!!!!!! Obviously you didn't read the comments above lol.

That is what really happened...we all drank Koolaide during the mass hiring and "a new airplane every 10 days"???

That's the farthest thing from the truth about the demise of TWA. I can't think of any of us at TWA that thought we were out of the woods during our expansion. In the wake of TWA Flt 800 and the fact that Carl Icahn was raiding our ticket inventories and then reselling them on lowestfare.com as a result of the Karabu agreement, we never thought the new airplanes and the mass hiring was a sign of prosperity. We leased planes because we had to, we hired due to unprecendented retirements and resignations...I don't remember the koolaide part.

If you're going to discuss AirTran...why not leave TWA out of it....thank you.
FF

RobLAX
10-02-2007, 06:50 AM
I don't need to ask, I was there! Sorry bubba. Your out of your league. Additionally, read the comments above and you might, just might understand the reference to coolaide. Again read the book not the cover. It shows your ignorance. You might want to read up on freedom of speech also. Just a thought.

Boogie Nights
10-07-2007, 11:39 PM
RobLAX what is your grudge? Great you don't like AAI, get over it. Yeah we are not perfect move on. You obiviously think you are superior but you add nothing to the discussion. Quick little quips, ingnorance in abundance. You primary purpose seems to be to encourage ire, and not of the topic at hand only ire towards you. You really must be some ego maniac to think so highly of your opinions and I got to wonder that it would really be a long 4 day with you in the seat next to me.

SaltyDog
10-08-2007, 12:15 AM
Roblax,
I think FliFast was there as well. You are a flamebaiter. Throwing around insults to posters and your weak logic leaves little for your reputation. But I bow to your almighty image of yourself.:D

Boogie Nights
10-08-2007, 12:27 AM
RobLAX those of us who flew, fought and won have no need to be reminded about the freedom of speech. We have sacraficed much of our lives to protect that freedom for you. We just ask you to keep, your inflated opinions of yourself crowding out useful discussion.