US Airways explores American takeover

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by BYRON HARRIS

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WFAA

Posted on January 25, 2012 at 7:46 PM

Updated Wednesday, Jan 25 at 9:47 PM

DALLAS - The CEO of US Airways, based in Scottsdale, confirmed Wednesday that his airline has hired a law firm to evaluate a potential merger with bankrupt American Airlines.

US Airways is itself a creature of bankruptcy.

It was merged with America West, which went bankrupt in 1991. The two carriers took the US Airways label in 2005.

If American were to merge with US Airways, the two would control about 20 percent of the U. S. market. Airline consultants say US Airways could not bid for American for at least 60 days.

Delta Airlines is also looking at American, but a merger of those two may face anti-trust opposition from the justice department.

A more likely takeover candidate than either of those two may be TPG Capital, which has roots in Fort Worth. TPG has experience in airline takeovers.

Airline consultant Mike Boyd in Denver said US Airways and Delta are in essence "kicking American's tires," because it makes good sense from a competitive standpoint.

E-mail bharris@wfaa.com

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