Aviation News

August 27, 2010

Department of Justice Greenlights United-Continental Merger

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By: BNO News
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United Airlines and Continental Airlines on Friday announced that the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) has approved the merger of the two airline companies and is closing its review pending the merge of the airlines.

United Airlines Chairman, President, and CEO, Glenn Tilton, said he was pleased that the milestone had been reached and looks forward to the stockholders’ vote in September and hopes to close the merger by October 1st. “The combination of United and Continental will create a world class airline, which will deliver an industry leading network for our customers and the communities we serve, career opportunities for our people, and value and return for our stockholders,” Tilton said.

Continental’s CEO, Jeff Smisek, said that “The completion of DOJ’s review is an important step on our journey of creating the world’s leading airline, benefiting our customers, co-workers, communities, and stockholders.” The decision by the DOJ will allow the merger between the two airlines to go forward.

Continental and United both acknowledged the efforts of the U.S. Department of Transportation and the Federal Aviation Administration in the merger process. Additionally, the two companies will be engaged in discussions with the attorneys general of both states who are both reviewing the merger.

The two companies announced an all-stock merger of equals on May 3, but are subject to stockholder approval and closing conditions. Both companies have scheduled stockholder meetings on September 17 for approval of the merger.

The two companies received clearance from the European Commission on the merger in July, who said that the transaction wouldn’t result in competitive concerns in European routes.

United Airline is one of the largest international carriers in the U.S., operating over 3,400 flights a day on United and United Express. Continental Airlines is the fifth largest airline in the world, and has more than 2,700 daily departures through various continents all over the world.