Delta Air Lines-Northwest Airlines merger
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Most common symbol for the merger
On April 15, 2008, Delta Air Lines and Northwest Airlines announced a merger agreement. The merger of the two carriers formed, at the time, the largest commercial airline in the world, with 786 aircraft. The merged airline is called "Delta Air Lines."
| [hide] |
|1 Leading up to the announcement |
|2 Announcement |
|3 After the Announcement |
|4 Transition from Northwest to Delta |
|5 The "New" Delta Air Lines Fleet |
|6 See also |
|7 References |
Leading up to the announcement
It had been reported as early as January 2008 that Delta and Northwest were in merger discussions. News reports covering the event and the official press release reported that the new airline would use the Delta name and its world headquarters in Atlanta. The proposed merger partners lost a combined $10.5 billion in Q1 2008, an amount that exceeded their combined market capitalization.
When the airlines combined, the "new Delta" would be based in Atlanta with a network focused on its hub at Atlanta and WorldGateway at Detroit, along with hubs at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport, John F. Kennedy International Airportin New York City, Salt Lake City International Airport, Memphis International Airport, Narita International Airport near Tokyo, Amsterdam Airport Schiphol, and Paris-Charles de Gaulle Airport.
On April 14, 2008, both Delta and Northwest Airlines announced that they would merge to create the world's largest airline under the Delta name. The Atlanta-based combined airline will have $17.7 billion enterprise value. The company also stated on April 14, 2008 that it agreed with its pilot union to extend the existing collective bargaining agreement through the end of 2012. The agreement, subject to a vote by the pilots, provided Delta pilots a 3.5% equity stake in the created new airline.
After the Announcement
On September 26, 2008 it was announced that both Delta and Northwest's shareholders had approved the merger. Approval by a federal antitrust review board's blessing was the last step needed to finalize the deal. The proposed merger "is likely to produce substantial and credible efficiencies that will benefit U.S. consumers and is not likely to substantially lessen competition," the Justice Department said in a statement issued by its Antitrust Division.
The deal passed through anti-trust overview from the Department of Justice; as most analysis expected, the deal was not blocked, due to the minimal overlap between the two airlines' routes and very little threat to competition in the industry. The merger was also expected to be the subject of several hearings on Capitol Hill. Representative Jim Oberstar of Minnesota, who also serves as chair of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, made clear his opposition to the merger, and he fought it in Washington. There was also strong support for the merger at the Capitol from legislators from Georgia, including Representative Lynn Westmoreland, Representative David Scott, and Senator Johnny Isakson. On August 7, 2008, the merger won regulatory approval from the European Union. 
After a six-month investigation, government economists concluded the merger would likely drive down costs for consumers without curbing competition. On October 29, 2008, the United States Department of Justice approved Delta's plan to acquire...