Alaska/Virgin Clear Last Major Obstacle to Merger


On Tuesday, I wrote about the breaking news that the Department of Justice had granted Alaska Airlines anti-trust immunity for their purchase of Virgin America, the last major legal step AS needed to take before closing the deal with Virgin. This immunity came at the cost of a large part of American’s partnership with Alaska, with codesharing ties between AA and AS being significantly reduced.

While it looks like the US government is on-board with the merger, many consumers are not. Several months ago, ‘private plaintiffs’ filed a lawsuit against Alaska, saying that Alaska’s acquisition of Virgin America would reduce competition in the industry in a way that would hurt consumers. Alaska said at the time that they considered the claim to be ‘without merit’ and that they would fight the lawsuit in court.

However, yesterday Alaska settled the lawsuit out of court for an undisclosed amount. This lawsuit was the last thing standing between them and a merger, so I guess they decided that, since they had approval from the government, they might as well settle this lawsuit so there wasn’t anything left to chance before the deal closed.

I’m not sure what the plaintiffs think they’re getting by just getting a crap-ton of money from Alaska, when what they were asking for was the prevention of a merger. Kind of weird…

Many people are saying that the merger should close soon, which means that Alaska can finally take that special Virgin America/Alaska livery 737 out of storage…


About the Author

I'm Alex, and I am an enthusiast in all things travel: miles and points, airplanes, airline products, and more. On this blog, you can read my take on recent travel/ commercial aviation news, trip reports, ramblings, rants, and opinions, and I'll even share some of my aviation photography from time to time. Hope you enjoy reading, and happy travels!