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Delta Works to Terminate Leases at Cincinnati and Los Angeles Airports April 30, 2006

Posted by Andrew in Commercial Aviation, Delta.
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On the heels of recent agreements with its pilot and flight attendant unions, Delta Airlines is now seeking to reject leases at Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport and at Los Angeles International Airport. Citing a desire to lower its real estate costs under bankruptcy protection, the carrier is working to void some of the leases at both airports. In Cincinnati, which is Delta’s second largest hub, the carrier wants to release some of its gate space in Terminal 3 and Concourse B. In a written statement to the Associated Press (AP), Delta urged customers that their desire to be released from commitments to some of their real estate would not affect passengers directly. Delta is merely attributing these moves, which came after failed negotiations with the respective airport authorities, as a necessary component of their plan to shave three billion in total costs. Still, some aviation analysts are warning that the desire to reject leases at Cincinnati is the opening stage in a concerted effort to cut back the number of flights arriving at and departing from Delta’s second largest hub. Within the past year, Delta Airlines has bolstered the number of flights it operates from New York City’s JFK and Salt Lake City’s SLC airport, while trimming back the number of flights originating from and arriving at Dallas Fort Worth Airport. With the collapse of low-cost subsidiary Song back into Delta mainline, the carrier’s latest moves are the rationalization of a legacy carrier formally bloated by high wages and over-expansion.


Delta Pilots, Management Avert Strike April 15, 2006

Posted by Andrew in Uncategorized.
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Up until midday Friday, many analysts and Delta employees were convinced that Delta’s pilots would go on strike over the Easter weekend. Such a strike would have the potential to bring the legacy carrier to its knees; however, late Friday afternoon a tentative agreement was forged between the pilot’s union (ALPA) and Delta management. Representatives from both parties were tight-lipped about specific details, but the deal likely means that both sides made concessions, ultimately moving toward their goal of making Delta Airlines profitable again. The agreement still must be ratified by Delta’s 5930 pilots. A few weeks prior to the tentative agreement, 95% of Delta’s pilots voted to authorize a strike. Delta pilot Keith Rosenkranz, senior Delta pilot, summarized the rationale for Delta pilots to strike: “There does come a point when you have to stand up for your profession and the things that you negotiated in good faith, and if the company is not willing to recognize that then I’m not going to vote for something that continues to take.” Bolstered by the favorable news, a Delta spokesperson encouraged passengers to “book with confidence.” Still, Delta has to overcome a multitude of issues, like the restructuring of one of its regional affiliates, Comair, before it can eke out a profit. The road to profitability is long for Delta, and as Lee Moak, the chairman of the union’s executive committee at Delta, said: “We will not hurry… but will proceed in an unrushed, methodical manner.”