Alaska Air Acquires Virgin America for $4 Billion
It has been announced, just one week after the deal was given approval by regulators, that Alaska Air Group has closed the acquisition of Virgin America for the sum of $4 billion.
It has not been decided whether Alaska Air will retain the Virgin America brand, but this is expected to be revealed within the first quarter of this year.
Alaska Air Group notes that the consolidation of one of its biggest competitors will enable them to compete more effectively with the other major carriers that between them handle 84% of air traffic in the U.S. – Delta Air Lines, United Airlines and American Airlines.
According to a statement from Alaska Air Group a few days ago, ‘Alaska Airlines and Virgin America will spend the next year working to secure Federal Aviation Administration certification to allow the two airlines to operate as a single carrier.’ The group hopes to achieve certification by 2018.
The merger will give Alaska Air and Virgin a fleet of 286 aircraft, operating almost 1200 daily flights to 118 destinations across the U.S., Canada, Costa Rica, Cuba and Mexico.