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Fighting to fly solo, Delta narrows its November losses

Fighting to fly solo, Delta narrows its November losses

Delta Air Lines Inc. reported Friday it narrowed its loss in November to $49 million (euro37.2 million), which an analyst said may bode well for the third largest U.S. carrier to fly solo when it emerges from bankruptcy.
The news comes as Atlanta-based Delta is trying to fend off a hostile takeover bid from Tempe, Arizona-based US Airways Group Inc.
The November figure compares with a $181 million (euro137.4 million) loss it posted for the same month a year ago, the company said in a monthly operating report it filed with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in New York.
"It's a move in the right direction. And if they want to remain independent, continuing improvement and results are necessary," said George Hamlin, vice president of business consulting for aviation firm Morten Beyer & Agnew.
Ed Bastian, the airline's chief financial officer, said the results "continue the momentum" that could lead the airline back into the black next year.
The airline is credited with helping to transform Atlanta's airport into the world's busiest and the city itself into an economic engine of the Southeast. But Delta was sent reeling after the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks. Delta filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in 2005, a year the company reported a $2 billion (euro1.5 billion) loss.
Bastian said the company has rebounded since then, and that the airline expects to narrow its 2006 losses to $350 million (euro265.8 million) and could turn a modest $450 million (euro341.7 million) profit next year. A reorganization plan the company filed earlier this month calls for it to emerge from bankruptcy by the middle of next year as a stand-alone carrier.
Delta's creditors are currently weighing the proposals from both airlines.
Delta has tried to move the takeover struggle beyond the boardroom by organizing protests that have drawn thousands of Delta employees and by rallying influential decision makers to its cause. Once at odds with each other over Delta's cost-cutting moves, the airline's management and pilots union joined forces to oppose the takeover bid.
US Airways, meanwhile, has said it is not backing off. Chief Executive Doug Parker said in an interview Thursday that his company does not intend to increase its $8.4 billion (euro6.4 billion) offer for Delta and that he believes its offer for its archrival provides more value than Delta's stand-alone plan.
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On the Net:
http://www.delta.com
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Associated Press writer Harry R. Weber in Atlanta contributed to this report.


Updated : 2021-03-03 05:06 GMT+08:00