American Airlines Eyes Frontier Airlines For Merger

Republic Airways Holdings Wants To Sell Frontier

American Airlines is interested in a merger, and Frontier Airlines is one of five airlines the company has considered, according to the Wall Street Journal.

"They've got some pretty attractive routes that they fly, especially into Mexico," said Dr. Mac Clouse with the University of Denver Daniels College of Business when Frontier went up for sale last November. "That may be a way that someone could get those routes."

"In my opinion, based on finances and routes the likelihood of a Frontier/American 'merger' is very unlikely," said 7NEWS aviation analyst Steve Cowell. "Frontier walks the wire on its financial condition and was in the not too distant past near bankruptcy themselves. They add minimal benefit to American's finances."

American is in bankruptcy protection, but its CEO is still interested in looking at merger options.

"It now makes sense to carefully evaluate a range of strategic options, including potential mergers," said Tom Horton, American's chief executive, in a letter to employees.

Frontier was among five airlines identified Wednesday as potential merger partners in a Wall Street Journal article that cited unnamed sources familiar with the airline's plans.

The other airlines being considered are US Airways, JetBlue, Alaska Air and Virgin America.

Republic Airways Holdings bought Frontier out of bankruptcy in 2009. In November 2011, Republic said it was looking at options for selling the airlines.

Frontier operates approximately 500 daily flights from its three hubs at Denver International Airport, Milwaukee's General Mitchell International Airport and Kansas City International Airport.

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Information from the Wall Street Journal: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702303567704577518980624743426.html

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