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Old August 17th, 2006, 01:33 AM   #221
pricemazda
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But the open skies has been delayed because of the mid-terms elections, and Congress won't pass a key provision on allowing 49% ownership of US airlines, but only 25% of the voting rights because of anti-terror fears, or in other words old fashioned protectionism.

So because they won't pass that, the EU won't implement their side of the deal until the US does.
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Old September 2nd, 2006, 07:40 AM   #222
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Delta Argues to Drop Pilot Pensions
By BARBARA ORTUTAY
1 September 2006

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. (AP) - Delta Air Lines Inc. told a bankruptcy judge Friday it has no choice but to eliminate its pilots' pension plan if it is to come out from bankruptcy and remain afloat.

The nation's third biggest air carrier had asked to end its pension plan for pilots effective on Saturday, saying that keeping it in place would mean a "crippling" operational and financial crisis that would prevent it from emerging from Chapter 11 protection as it hopes to do by mid-2007.

But the plan, for now, stayed in place, as the hearing was set to continue on Tuesday and Wednesday after Labor Day. If Judge Adlai Hardin decides to terminate the plan next week, he can do so retroactively, which Delta said it will request.

While Delta's active pilots have said they would not object to the termination as part of a broader concessions deal, a number of individual retired pilots as well as a group known as DP2 representing more than 100 of them have filed objections to Delta's request over the past few weeks.

A larger group, known as DP3, which represents 2,850 retired pilots, more than half of Delta's retired pilots, has asked to delay the hearing but has not come out against the Delta's request to terminate its pilots' pension plan.

Timothy Coleman of the Blackstone Group, Delta's financial adviser, testified during the hearing that if the plan stays in place, the carrier won't be able submit a restructuring plan and exit lenders will likely be unwilling to take the risk of financing it.

Delta's pension plan had allowed pilots to retire at the age of 50 and take out half their entitlements in a lump sum, receiving the rest in annuity. The company estimated that 800 to 1,000 pilots would retire early if they were able to take the lump sum payment. They have not been able to take the lump sum since Oct. 1, 2005 due to a liquidity shortfall in the pension fund. The plan's termination would mean the end of the lump sum payouts.

Currently, 1,820 pilots are eligible for early retirement, said Marshall Huebner, a lawyer for Delta, during the hearing. By July 2010, that number would nearly double.

"If the lump sum door opens, the plan will be drained by pilots retiring early," he said. The lump sum door is set to open Oct. 1, according to Delta.

But Sherwin Kaplan, a lawyer for DP2, the splinter group representing retired pilots who oppose the plan's termination, said pilots would not retire early and take the lump sum payments at the levels Delta estimates. DP2 also disagrees with Delta's assertion that a large number of its senior pilots would retire early with little or no notice if the option becomes available, leaving the carrier with fewer experienced pilots to fly planes and leading to thousands of canceled flights.

Coleman said regardless of how many pilots would take advantage of it, the "sheer existence of the lump sum possibility is daunting," in or out of bankruptcy.

The carrier says it does not have enough money to cover the pilot pensions. As of July 1, the pilot pension plan was projected to have assets of 39 percent of its current liability -- $1.6 billion of assets versus $4.1 billion in liabilities -- according to a Delta court filing from Aug 4.

Huebner likened DP2's opposition to playing "Russian roulette" with Delta.

The court's approval of the pension's termination would mean the federal government's pension insurer, the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp., would take over the plan and pay active pilots reduced pension benefits -- based on factors such as their retirement date. The retirees who don't want the plan eliminated oppose it for this reason. PBGC, Kaplan said, acts "like every other insurance company," and will try to lower its payouts.

But Huebner said even if the plan is eliminated, pilots will receive 85 percent to 90 percent of their pension benefits, including the lump sum.

Delta says currently retired pilots will receive, on average, about $75,000 a year even if the plan is terminated.

Atlanta-based Delta has said it hopes to keep the pension plan for its ground workers and flight attendants, which does not have a lump sum option.

UAL Corp.'s United Airlines, the second-largest carrier in the country, terminated its pilots' pension plan in 2004, while it was under bankruptcy protection. A federal judge upheld that termination in June.

----------------

AP Business Writer Harry R. Weber contributed to this story.
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Old September 15th, 2006, 12:43 AM   #223
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Delta to offer on-demand movies, TV shows, music on some long domestic flights
13 September 2006

ATLANTA (AP) - Delta Air Lines Inc., the nation's third-largest carrier, said Wednesday it will offer on-demand movies, television shows and music to all customers on some long-haul domestic flights.

First-class customers will receive the new entertainment features for free, while coach class customers will pay a $5 charge per movie and receive television, music and trivia for free, spokeswoman Betsy Talton said. To play a collection of games will cost a $5 flat fee for coach class customers, Talton said.

TV screens will be in customers' seat backs and those who have to pay for certain services can swipe a credit card on machines in the seatbacks, Talton said.

The new service, which will be phased in over a period of time, will be available to all passengers on select Delta flights over four hours, or more than 1,750 miles, including those from Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport and New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport to cities including Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Salt Lake City, San Francisco and Seattle.

The service will first be available on Delta's fleet of 48 former Song Boeing 757s on certain domestic, transcontinental flights. By the end of November, all flights from JFK to the West Coast will include the service.

The service includes 24 channels of live television, more than 20 movies, music and 10 video games. Delta offers similar on-demand entertainment in its BusinessElite class on international flights. However, for the time being, it is not available in coach class on international flights, Talton said.

Atlanta-based Delta has been operating under bankruptcy court protection for about a year. It has a hub in Salt Lake City.
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Old October 4th, 2006, 02:49 AM   #224
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Delta Air Lines Reports Monthly Results for August 2006
Corporate Press Release
http://news.delta.com/article_displa...ticle_id=10399

ATLANTA, September 29, 2006 – Delta Air Lines today filed its Monthly Operating Report for August 2006 with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York.

Key points include:
Delta’s August 2006 net loss was $11 million.
As of August 31, 2006, Delta had $3.0 billion of unrestricted cash, cash equivalents and short-term investments.
Delta reported a net loss of $11 million in the month of August 2006, a $147 million improvement compared to the net loss of $158 million in August 2005. As of August 31, 2006, Delta had $3.9 billion of cash, cash equivalents and short-term investments, of which $3.0 billion was unrestricted.

Restructuring Progress
In September 2005, Delta announced a comprehensive restructuring plan intended to deliver an additional $3 billion in annual financial benefits through revenue improvements and cost reductions by the end of 2007. During the month of August, Delta’s progress in restructuring its business is reflected by: Reducing mainline non-fuel CASM(1) to 6.66 cents for the month, a 7.6 percent reduction from August 2005.
Increasing consolidated passenger unit revenue to 10.64 cents, a 12.8 percent improvement compared to August 2005.
“During the month of August, Delta continued to make progress as evidenced by our revenue and cost performance,” said Edward H. Bastian, Delta’s executive vice president and chief financial officer. “While we have more work ahead of us to achieve sustained profitability, we are encouraged by our results to date and are on track with our restructuring plan.”
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Old October 4th, 2006, 07:42 AM   #225
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i flew Delta from Atlanta to Gatwick in 2002. Gatwick was nice. the express was great had I known there was a cheaper train i would have used it - the express was 11 GBP at the time a little pricey for my budget
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Old October 8th, 2006, 01:54 AM   #226
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Why didnt Delta just fly from JFK to London Stansted or even London Luton Airports in the past rather then spending so much on buying slots at Gatwick? Both Airports are large enough to handle 767/A340 type aircraft and arent any less convienient from London then Gatwick?
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Old October 11th, 2006, 07:26 AM   #227
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Delta to roll out lie-flat seat from 2008
By Chris Reiter

NEW YORK, Oct 10 (Reuters) - Delta Air Lines Inc. <DALRQ.PK> on Tuesday said it planned to begin introducing lie-flat seats in business class in 2008 as the bankrupt carrier works to lure high-end international travelers.

"We think (the new seats along with improved food, wine, and in-flight entertainment features) will attract more premium customers," said Delta spokeswoman Betsy Talton.

In-flight amenities have become a hot battleground, especially for Delta and other traditional U.S. airlines, which are expanding international routes in the face of intense competition domestically from low-cost carriers. But this in turn has created an arms race for cabin comforts.

British Airways Plc <BAY.L> was the first to introduce lie-flat seats in 2000 to appeal to long-haul travelers. Numerous others have since followed suit and then some.

Air Canada, for instance, offers a soothing menthol foot spray for international executive class passengers and washrooms that feature Fruits & Passion spa amenities, while Virgin Atlantic offers double beds in some of its Upper Class Suites.

"It's a competitive disadvantage not to have a lie-flat seat," said Kevin Mitchell, chairman of the Business Travel Coalition. "If I have a choice, I'm going to pick the premier product."

Delta plans to have the seats in all 77 Boeing Co. <BA.N> 777 and 767 aircraft, which fly long-haul routes between the United States and Asia, Africa, and the Middle East, by 2010.

The new seat, which includes a privacy screen and stowaway video monitor, folds out to a 6-foot 3-inch flat bed.

The seats will first be installed on 10 Boeing 777 aircraft, costing more than $2 million per plane and reducing the business-class cabin to 43 seats from 50, Delta's Talton said.

Delta says its seat is the first by a U.S. carrier that allows passengers to lie completely flat, unlike seats by rivals that "offer an angled lie-flat product," Delta's Chief Operating Officer Jim Whitehurst said in a statement.

In July, American Airlines, owned by AMR Corp. <AMR.N>, unveiled a lie-flat seat and in-flight entertainment improvements. UAL Corp.'s <UAUA.O> United Airlines has upgraded to its premium service on transcontinental flights, which includes lie-flat seats. Northwest Airlines <NWACQ.PK> also has a fully reclining seat.

Delta, which hopes to emerge from bankruptcy in the first half of 2007, has a lot at stake in appealing to international travelers. Through September, the Atlanta-based carrier had increased international capacity 20.1 percent, while decreasing domestic capacity 13.9 percent.
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Old October 12th, 2006, 11:34 PM   #228
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Delta adds flights to Europe, Seoul, Dubai

WASHINGTON, Oct 12, 2006 (AFP) - Delta Air Lines said Thursday it would add flights from the United States to new European cities and to Seoul and Dubai in 2007.

The carrier, which is under bankruptcy protection, said it was "building on the success of the largest international expansion in its history with new nonstop service to some of the fastest growing economies in the world."

Delta said it was adding nonstop flights from its base in Atlanta, Georgia, to Prague and Vienna in May.

Also from Atlanta, the airline will add service to the South Korean capital in June and to Dubai in May. Delta will additionally expand its service to Sao Paulo, Brazil to twice daily.

The carrier said it would be adding a flight from New York to Pisa/Florence in May and to Bucharest in June. It will add nonstop service to Shannon, Ireland in June, replacing one-stop service from Dublin.

From New York, Delta will expand service to London's Gatwick airport to twice daily.

"Delta customers have responded overwhelmingly to the more than 50 new international routes added in the last year and have made the largest international expansion in our history an extraordinary success," said Delta chief executive Gerald Grinstein.

The announcement came a day after Northwest, also in bankruptcy and like Delta a member of the SkyTeam Alliance, said it was adding flights from Detroit to Brussels and to Dusseldorf, Germany, next year.

Northwest will also add a flight to Amsterdam from Hartford, Connecticut.
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Old October 13th, 2006, 05:44 AM   #229
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hkskyline View Post
[size=4][b]

Northwest will also add a flight to Amsterdam from Hartford, Connecticut.
And thats pretty much the most random flight ever.
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Old October 13th, 2006, 07:01 AM   #230
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And thats pretty much the most random flight ever.
Yes, that sounded quite weird when I read it, too!

Here's the press release from Delta :
http://news.delta.com/article_displa...ticle_id=10411
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Old October 14th, 2006, 06:49 AM   #231
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Friday October 13, 3:35 AM
Delta CEO to retire after airline exits bankruptcy

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Delta Air Lines Inc. Chief Executive Gerald Grinstein said on Thursday he plans to retire after the airline emerges from bankruptcy protection, but he declined to say who would succeed him.

Atlanta-based Delta filed for Chapter 11 protection in September last year and expects to emerge from bankruptcy in the first half of 2007.

"It will be a little while after that," Grinstein told reporters during an event in New York to promote Delta's international expansion plans.

Grinstein, 73, declined to say whether the No. 3 U.S. airline had a succession plan in place. "The board will make its decision when the time comes," he said.

In the past, Grinstein has said a successor is likely to come from within the company, and he has named COO James Whitehurst and CFO Edward Bastian as possible candidates.

Grinstein also said that Delta intends to emerge from bankruptcy as an independent carrier, dismissing speculation over the past few months that consolidation might be in the works.

Industry leaders such as UAL Corp. Chief Executive Glenn Tilton and US Airways Group Chief Executive Doug Parker have been outspoken proponents of consolidation.

Grinstein said Tilton had talked to him about a possible merger more than 18 months ago, while Parker had asked him earlier this year, but he had told them that he was not interested.

"I told (Parker) that we did not want to have any discussion like that," Grinstein said. "Our plan is to come out independent and stand-alone."

But Grinstein added that he did expect a different form of consolidation to happen in the industry, where one airline could buy parts of another's business.

"I don't think it is going to look very different two years from now in terms of the number of carriers, the number of hubs and the scale of them," Grinstein said.

Grinstein, a director at Delta since 1987, was named its chief executive in January 2004.

He has also been the chairman and chief executive of Burlington Northern Inc., where he oversaw the acquisition of Santa Fe Pacific Corp. to create Burlington Northern Santa Fe Corp. . He retired from Burlington Northern in 1995.

From 1985 through March 1987 he was the chief executive of Western Airlines Inc. Delta and Western then merged.

"I think it is quits this time," Grinstein said.
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Old October 15th, 2006, 04:47 AM   #232
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Sounds a little wierd, doesn't it? But it makes sense. Bradley tends to serve as an alternative airport now to those people who live in southern CT and commute into NY every day. a very affluential group, and this gives Northwest a great advantage. People can now fly through Bradley without having to go to JFK, and in Amsterdam they are part of KLM's hub.
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Old October 21st, 2006, 03:15 AM   #233
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Delta seeks extension on deadline to file restructuring plan with bankruptcy court
20 October 2006

NEW YORK (AP) - Delta Air Lines Inc. filed a court motion on Friday seeking to postpone an upcoming deadline to file a reorganization plan in its bankruptcy case.

The nation's third-largest airline asked to move back the deadline for filing the plan to Feb. 15, 2007, from Nov. 8, and the deadline to solicit approval of it to April 16, 2007, from Jan. 8.

It is the third extension Delta has sought. It entered bankruptcy protection on Sept. 14, 2005, amid industry problems stemming from tougher competition and higher fuel costs.

Delta is pursuing cost cuts as it tries to emerge from Chapter 11 by the middle of next year.

On Thursday, Judge Adlai Hardin of the Southern District of New York approved a Delta plan to cut retiree health benefits by $50 million annually. The company has also reached an agreement with pilots to terminate their pension plan.
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Old October 21st, 2006, 05:10 PM   #234
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Korean Air already flies from ATL to ICN, which makes my mom happy. Adding Delta to that list makes me happy since I hate Korean Air. It's about time Delta fly to an East Asian city besides Tokyo.
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Old October 23rd, 2006, 03:53 PM   #235
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^ United by far has the most extensive Asian network beyond Tokyo. I don't know why the other airlines don't fly more often to the other cities. Perhaps air rights is an issue.

Delta seeks extension to file reorganization plan

NEW YORK, Oct 23 (Reuters) - Delta Air Lines Inc. has asked a federal bankruptcy court for an extension of about three months to file a reorganization plan, according to court documents filed on Friday.

Delta, which has been operating under bankruptcy protection since September 2005, has asked for such extensions twice before. The No. 3 U.S. carrier has said it expects to exit Chapter 11 in the first half of 2007.

Atlanta-based Delta asked a judge to extend until Feb. 15 the time it has to exclusively file a plan, and push back a deadline for soliciting acceptances for the plan to April 16.

Competing plans cannot be filed during these periods, which are currently scheduled to expire on Nov. 8 and Jan. 8, respectively.

Delta said it needs the extra time "to complete work currently under way on a variety of issues, including labor, pension, aircraft fleet, claims reconciliation and exit structuring," according to the court filing.

The airline is looking to raise $3 billion annually in cost cuts and revenue increases before it emerges from bankruptcy.
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Old October 25th, 2006, 07:05 PM   #236
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rail Claimore View Post
Korean Air already flies from ATL to ICN, which makes my mom happy. Adding Delta to that list makes me happy since I hate Korean Air. It's about time Delta fly to an East Asian city besides Tokyo.
Delta's expansion to Seoul is a little strange. As you stated Korean Air already flies a daily 747-400 from Atlanta nonstop to Seoul and they are a SkyTeam partner of Delta. Korean has worked very hard to build up that flight and it's even code-shared with Delta, meaning that Delta already gets to sell a certain number of seats on Korean Air's plane. Perhaps there is enough demand on the route for both Korean and Delta to operate a daily nonstop flight. Hopefully that's the reason.
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Old December 5th, 2006, 09:42 AM   #237
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Delta reaches deal to drop pilots' pension plan
By John Crawley

WASHINGTON, Dec 4 (Reuters) - Delta Air Lines <DALRQ.PK> would be allowed to terminate its pilots' pension plan under an agreement announced on Monday, clearing a significant hurdle in its bid to restructure and exit bankruptcy next year.

Delta said the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corp. (PBGC), the federal agency that insures corporate pensions, would become trustee for the pilots' pension plan under the agreement which must still be finalized by the PBGC and approved by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York.

The airline also pledged to preserve pension accounts covering 90,000 nonunion workers and retirees, including flight attendants, when it steps out of court protection. The pilots are the airline's only major unionized work force.

Delta hopes to emerge from bankruptcy in the first half of 2007. Its management is working on a reorganization plan to emerge as a stand alone company and opposes an unsolicited $8.5 billion offer from US Airways Group Inc. <LCC.N>.

Legislation enacted this summer gave Delta and Northwest Airlines <NWACQ.PK>, also bankrupt, substantially more time to meet pension obligations as a way of discouraging them from terminating plans, which companies are permitted to do under certain conditions in restructuring.

US Airways and United Airlines <UAUA.O> both terminated employee pension plans in bankruptcy.

Delta said in advance of the pension law overhaul that it could not afford the deficit-ridden plan for current and retired pilots.

When the PBGC takes over pension plans, not all beneficiaries receive the full amount of their promised benefits. Pension payments by the PBGC are funded by remaining plan assets, investment income, premiums, and bankruptcy recoveries like the deal struck with Delta.

The PBGC will receive an unsecured claim of $2.2 billion when Delta emerges from bankruptcy, representing the gap between assets and promised benefits of the pilots' plan, plus the amount the company should have contributed since its September 2005 bankruptcy filing.

If past practice is an indicator, the PBGC is likely to receive a percentage of its unsecured claim when the airline settles with its creditors. Delta also will distribute $225 million in unsecured debt to the PBGC.

PBGC's initial claim against the airline was just under $3 billion.

Delta said it would move quickly to terminate the pilots' plan if the agreement is finalized by the PBGC and approved by the court. Termination would be retroactive to Sept. 2.

The committee of Delta's unsecured creditors supports the PBGC settlement, the airline said.
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Old December 6th, 2006, 08:27 AM   #238
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Delta ends SAA’s monopoly on direct SA-US flights
Audrey D'Angelo
6 December 2006
The Star

Cape Town – The world’s third-largest airline, Delta, flew into Johannesburg’s OR Tambo Airport yesterday, ending SAA’s monopoly of a direct service between South Africa and the US.

Delta will fly daily between Johannesburg and Atlanta – the world’s largest interchange hub – for six months before considering whether to double the service to 14 flights a week.

Jimmy Eichelgruen, Delta’s general sales agent for the Atlantic region, said the first flight was almost completely filled with paying passengers, with sales having exceeded expectations.

Forward projections indicated that 40 percent of passengers would be from the US and 60 percent from Africa. African passengers would include many from west Africa, boarding at the refuelling stop in Dakar, Senegal, to fly either to Atlanta or to Johannesburg. Demand for business class seats from west African passengers was high.

Eichelgruen pointed out that Delta passengers had been carried to Atlanta by SAA for a long period, given his airline’s insight into the market and how it was likely to perform.

He said Delta had the support of South Africa’s 12 biggest tour operators and of a large number of operators in the US. It had a code-sharing agreement with Air France, one of its partners in the Sky Team alliance, on the route.

This would give passengers the choice of taking direct flights between the US and Johannesburg lasting 17 hours or triangular flights by way of Paris on one leg of the journey. Alternatively, they could take a connecting flight from London-Gatwick with South African airline Nationwide, with which Delta would have code-sharing arrangements on flights in this country from next month.

Delta had new services connecting Gatwick with New York, Atlanta and Cincinnati and used the same terminal at Gatwick as Nationwide’s London flights.

Eichelgruen said Delta was expanding its international route network rapidly with no extra outlay on aircraft because it had “a large pool of Boeing 777 and 767 extended range aircraft suitable for long-haul flights, which, until recently, were used for domestic flights”.

There were 1 000 daily departures from Atlanta to 220 destinations, 420 from Delta’s Cincinnati hub to 125 destinations and up to 152 departures to 65 destinations from its New York hub at JFK Airport.

Delta employed 47 000 people, and carried 118 853 189 passengers in 2005.

Its new service would enable people from small towns in every US state to travel to Johannesburg with a connecting flight to Atlanta.
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Old December 6th, 2006, 06:21 PM   #239
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US Airways Won't Pursue Delta Deal If Mgmt Opposes-Report
6 December 2006

NEW YORK (Dow Jones)--US Airways Group Inc. (LCC) will give up its proposed takeover of Delta Air Lines Inc. (DAL) if management at Delta can't be persuaded of the benefits, US Airways CEO Doug Parker said, USA Today reported Wednesday.

The newspaper reported that Parker said he isn't prepared to fight Delta's management in bankruptcy court by submitting a merger plan to the judge without the backing of Delta officials.

"We have to get to a point where we are all working together on this, or it's not going to happen," Parker said at a meeting with editors and reporters at USA Today, the newspaper said. "This is all about convincing Delta's management that this plan makes sense."

US Airways has made an unsolicited takeover offer of $8.5 billion in cash and stock to acquire Delta, the USA's third-biggest carrier.

Delta's management has rebuffed the offer, saying it's too risky and that Delta is better off as an independent airline. Delta declined to comment on Parker's remarks, USA Today said. Delta CEO Gerald Grinstein has repeatedly voiced opposition to the merger proposal since US Airways announced it Nov. 15.

In a memo to employees Tuesday, Grinstein said Delta, "is making crucial progress toward becoming a strong, independent, stand-alone company," the newspaper added.
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Old December 7th, 2006, 04:07 AM   #240
Rail Claimore
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nick in Atlanta View Post
Delta's expansion to Seoul is a little strange. As you stated Korean Air already flies a daily 747-400 from Atlanta nonstop to Seoul and they are a SkyTeam partner of Delta. Korean has worked very hard to build up that flight and it's even code-shared with Delta, meaning that Delta already gets to sell a certain number of seats on Korean Air's plane. Perhaps there is enough demand on the route for both Korean and Delta to operate a daily nonstop flight. Hopefully that's the reason.
The flight I was on back in 2004 was packed both ways. The Korean population in the Atlanta metro area is booming as it is, so I'm guessing Delta can probably grab a share of the future growth of that route.
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