American-US Airways Merger Moves A Step Closer With Bankruptcy Judge Approval

Things took another step closer to culminating the merger between American Airlines and US Airways yesterday when the bankruptcy judge approved the merger.  This was not a surprise, just a necessary mechanism in the process.

The next step is for the creditors to formally vote on the proposal.  I’d be utterly shocked if the creditors veto the arrangement.  One of the only things that the creditors have publicly squawked about is American CEO Tom Horton’s severance package.  They don’t have to worry about an up or down vote on that since the judge threw that part out.

Ultimately, I think that’s unfair, but from other articles I read it’s likely he’ll still get paid something similar to this before he rides off into the sunset.  The judge also intimated he’d be willing to look at the matter again before American files its final bankruptcy reorganization plan.

It’s likely that the creditors will approve the final plan quickly and that American will be back in front of the judge sometime in May to close things out.  That leaves congress and some regulatory agencies to appease, and then the largest merger in airline history happens.

I’m still nervous but accepting the new reality.  I’m hoping Doug Parker decides to keep the smart people American has, those that have worked hard to move the company forward in technology and in-flight products over the past couple years.


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