Continental Unites With United
Shareholders of Continental and United Airlines have finally voted to form a more perfect United Airlines, merging the two companies under United’s name to create the world’s largest airline service, overtaking its closest U.S. rival — the newly merged Delta and Northwest Airlines — and European carriers.
Although the merger was met positively by shareholders, many labor critics believe the union will actually lead to job cuts as the two companies join. –JCL
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The world’s biggest airline got clearance for take-off today as shareholders of United Airlines and Continental Airlines backed a multi-billion dollar merger that will create a carrier dwarfing rivals on both sides of the Atlantic.
The combined airline, which will adopt United’s name, is forecast to have $30bn of annual revenue, carrying 144m passengers a year to 59 countries. It will be larger than Europe’s top carrier, Air France-KLM, and will overtake its US rival, the newly merged combination of Delta Air Lines and Northwest.
Investors met to vote on the tie-up at twin meetings at Continental’s headquarters in Houston and at United’s base in Chicago. At Continental’s gathering, 98% of votes were cast in support of the share-swap deal, despite concerns among unions about job losses, plus opposition in some circles to the abandonment of United’s signature “tulip” logo.
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