American Airlines, one of the world’s largest airlines, has recently been in the news following their rebranding and the changing of their logo and exterior design. The new brand identity comes as the airline emerges from corporate restructuring after declaring bankruptcy in November 2011, and considers mergers with other airlines (Bender, 2013). According to the company’s CEO, Tom Horton, the airline’s new look is about creating a more modern and refreshing travel experience for the company’s customers (American Airlines Head: It's more than just new paint, 2013). Based on his statements, it is evident that the company completed some level of environmental scanning to determine the current needs and desires of its customers. However, in the wake of a recent Chapter 11 bankruptcy, the company has a long road to recovery. The airline industry, like most other industries, is forever changing. Using parts of Porter’s five forces model will help the airline to assess the competitive environment of the industry and to decide what other steps need to be taken in order to solidify the company’s restoration. The threat of new entries into the airline industry may be great because of deregulation. However, all of the price wars between airlines may discourage new entrants. The price wars between airlines may also increase the bargaining power of the customers. In recent years airlines like Delta and American Airlines have started to charge customers for things that were once free. This is aggravating and going forward, this may be something that American Airlines should consider changing in order to increase its customers’ loyalty.
All and all, it is refreshing to see a company like American Airlines bounce back from hard times. However, the company’s future rests with its management team. Rather than seeing their role as merely custodians of the status quo, today’s leaders must be proactive, anticipate change, and continually refine and, when necessary, make...
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