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December 07, 2012

AMR CEO Horton says with pilot agreement completed, decision on US Airways merger to come "soon"

AMR chief executive Tom Horton told employees on Friday that with the new pilots agreement, American Airlines' restructuring is coming to an end.

Horton also said that it is evaluating the merits of a merger for US Airways and is close to completing a review of other strategic alternatives.

"While we are confident the new American will be very strong, we are evaluating whether such a combination could create value for our owners and a positive outcome for our people and our customers," Horton said in a letter sent to employees. "We expect to have a conclusion on this soon."

Keep reading for the full letter from Horton.

-Andrea Ahles

Dear American Team:

It has been just over a year since we began our journey to restructure American for a successful future. It has not been easy, but much has been accomplished.

Today we crossed an important milestone - the conclusion of a new agreement with our pilots. We now have new contracts with each of our labor groups and have nearly completed the changes for our independent workgroups. It's fair to say this was a challenging process for all, and I'm appreciative of everyone who worked so hard to get this done. We are approaching the end of the restructuring and the beginning of the new American. An American set to offer growth and opportunity for our people.

It's a good time to pause and consider how far we've come. We have restructured debt and leases, optimized the fleet and facilities and negotiated improved supplier contracts. All of this, along with streamlining the management structure and the many changes we have made to be more efficient in every facet of our business, will achieve our targeted cost savings. We have made great progress improving revenue performance and topped the industry for six consecutive months. We returned to profitability in the second and third quarters, quickly closing the gap with our competition, and I am confident this momentum will accelerate in the months ahead.

We're modernizing the entire travel experience, with a steady stream of industry leading products and services that offer our customers the ultimate ease, comfort and connectivity. We are poised to have the most modern and efficient fleet in the industry. In fact, we will introduce 60 new aircraft to the fleet in 2013, including the new Airbus 319 and 321 and our new Flagship, the Boeing 777-300ER. And, as you may have heard, we have exciting work underway to renew and refresh our iconic brand in the very near future.

Above all, we have the best people in the business. Despite all the distractions, our team has stood tall and continued to deliver for our customers. Of course, a successful American must also deliver for our people, and these two things, more than anything, will ensure our future success.

As we bring our restructuring to a close, we are also completing our review of strategic alternatives. As you know, we have been evaluating the merits of a combination under a non-disclosure agreement with US Airways. While we are confident the new American will be very strong, we are evaluating whether such a combination could create value for our owners and a positive outcome for our people and our customers. We expect to have a conclusion on this soon.

Regardless of outcome, I hope you share my optimism and can feel the recovery that's started. Because of you, the new American is about to take flight. Thanks for all you do!

Sincerely,
Tom

 

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Comments

fw1421

As usual,Horton doesn't mention the people he"s laying off or the sacrifices he has forced down our throats.

I would like to know why in bankruptcy management can break and gut our contracts but the their contracts aren't touched. Why should a management team that led a company into bankruptcy,lost 11 Billion dollars of investors money,be able to keep their golden parachutes,and receive bonus compensation? Where is the justice in all of this? Where is the accountability?

Raf

This past year Delta Airlines made over 1 Billion dollars in net income the third quarter(Can you imagine what their profit would have been in a good national economy?) and it still isn't even happy with it's size by trying to take over Virgin Atlantic. American Airline's future is at a cross roads. A merger will give American Airlines the scale to compete for the lucrative business travel market where American Airlines lags behind. A merger with US Airways will let American dominate the domestic market escpecially the lucrative east coast with Washington's Reagan National (with the richest collection of local real estate and highest medium income not to mention the seat of power in the entire country) in the crosshairs. Change of management will give American Airlines a new beginning and a great opportunity for American Airlines to get back all of the customers that have left to fly on other competitors and start with a clean slate.

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Regardless of outcome, I hope you share my optimism and can feel the recovery that's started

Andrew

Alright, forgive me, but what is the obsession with a change of management...or at least a change of management to Doug Parker of all people. Parker's experience is making an airline profitable by holding down labor costs and not negotiating with his own employees.

He has done precisely what American's management refused to do until last year (make the airline profitable by going through bankruptcy and holding down labor costs), and for that, the unions believe that he deserves to run the company? Could someone explain that to me?

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