Report: Texas AG heading up group of AGs concerned with airline merger

By Jessica M. Karmasek | Jul 3, 2013

FORT WORTH, Texas (Legal Newsline) -- Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott is reportedly leading a group of state attorneys general who, along with the U.S. Department of Justice, are looking into a proposed American Airlines-US Airways merger.

On Monday, a spokesman for Abbott confirmed to the Star-Telegram that the office is heading up the group of 19 attorneys general.

The attorneys general, according to the newspaper, are concerned the merger will lead to their states losing air service or hubs.

The Justice Department already is investigating antitrust issues related to the merger, which was announced earlier this year.

In February, the boards of directors of both AMR Corporation, the parent company of American Airlines Inc., and US Airways Group Inc. unanimously approved a definitive merger agreement under which the companies will combine to a create a "premier global carrier" that will have an implied combined equity value of about $11 billion -- based on the price of US Airways' stock as of Feb. 13.

In a February news release, American Airlines said the combined airline -- which will be called American Airlines -- will offer more than 6,700 daily flights to 336 destinations in 56 countries and is expected to maintain all hubs currently served by both airlines, resulting in more travel options for customers.

The company will be headquartered in Dallas-Fort Worth, but will maintain a "significant corporate and operational presence" in Phoenix.

"The combined airline will have the scale, breadth and capabilities to compete more effectively and profitably in the global marketplace," Doug Parker, chairman and chief executive officer of US Airways, said in February.

"Our combined network will provide a significantly more attractive offering to customers, ensuring that we are always able to take them where they want to travel, when they want to go."

The merger is expected to close in September, but still needs government regulatory approval.

US Airways shareholders are expected to vote on the merger at a meeting next week.

From Legal Newsline: Reach Jessica Karmasek by email at jessica@legalnewsline.com.

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