Virgin America has been flying to Dallas Fort Worth International Airport for over five years. Now Alaska Airlines has just announced that they have bought Virgin in a huge $4 billion deal. This expands Alaska Air’s west coast routes considerably. This further reduces the number of airlines now operating in the United States. The U.S. has lost many major airlines in recent years, which may become a problem for prices and the level of service as competition is eliminated. The Federal government is watching the situation closely.
Alaska Air Group announced that this acquisition extends their reach across the U.S. and also brings in more transcontinental service. They will be flying in and out of Dallas Love Field. Virgin stockholders $57 per share for stock that was recently valued at only $38.90 per share. With the inclusion of aircraft leasing and other debts, the total deal will come to approximately $4 billion USD. Richard Branson helped launch Virgin America in 2007. While Virgin’s shareholders must still vote on the buyout, it is not a hostile takeover, so it is expected to be accepted without any problems.
Many airlines have merged or gone out of business in the last 10 years. The most recent before this deal was the merger of US Airways and American Airlines in 2013. It is yet to be determined how this will change the usage of the gates at Dallas Love Field. This is especially an issue as American Airlines has been looking for more gates at the airport. This story was reported in The Dallas Morning News.