FORT WORTH –– American Airlines is moving ahead with its first livery redesign in more than 40 years following a companywide vote.
In a newsletter sent Thursday, CEO Doug Parker announced that 60,000 of its 100,000 employees took part in the vote. Fifty-two percent voted for the flag livery over the longtime AA logo that donned the tail of its jets.
The vote is the first employees were asked to participate in since the Fort Worth-based airline merged with US Airways last month. The redesign, which included a new logo, was unveiled last January. Former CEO Tom Horton said it had been in the works since 2011.
Richard Nixon was president the last time American underwent a redesign.
More than 1,100 planes will be painted with the new design. These previously flew in fleets for both American and US Airways, prior to the merger. It will take seven days to paint the smaller planes and up to 17 for the larger ones.
“As I said early in this process, I was indifferent as to which option we chose, I just wanted you to be able to choose,” Parker wrote in the newsletter. “Now that the votes are in, I’m really pleased to have a firm decision we can all embrace. This is the airplane we will fly as we restore American to the greatest airline in the world –– and that is exciting.”
Upon its unveiling last year, Virasb Vahidi, American’s chief commercial officer, said doing away with the airline’s iconic polished aluminum skin was because the airline’s new fleet of Boeing 787 Dreamliners and Airbus jets will be made of composite and not metal.
Officials hope the new logo will usher in a more modern feel for the company and boost its image, which took a hit due to the yearslong process climbing out of bankruptcy.