Lucid ramps up production as supply chain issues ease



A union representing JetBlue flight attendants called on federal officials to block the merger, but Spirit Airlines' union agreed to back it. Joe Radle/Getty Images

WITHINBUCKS - Unions representing workers at JetBlue Airways and Spirit Airlines are divided over the proposed merger of the two companies, with one union supporting the deal and the other urging federal authorities to take it up. I urge you to pick it up. I'm begging you to stop.

In a letter Thursday, the Transportation Workers Union, which represents 6,800 JetBlue flight attendants, called on Attorney General Merrick B. Garland and Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg to block the merger. Unions are concerned that JetBlue, which bought Spirit, will not honor its contracts with workers afterward, arguing the deal violates antitrust laws and undermines competition. he added that he was worried

Two days later, Spirit's Cabin Crew Association (C.W.A.), which represents 5,600 flight attendants, celebrated the deal. Union leaders approved an interim deal with Spirit that included higher wages and improved quality of life while supporting the merger. General members of the union have not yet voted for the agreement.

The Justice Department will soon decide whether to file a lawsuit to block the merger. Spirit shareholders approved the deal in October, and the two airlines have responded to the ministry's request for additional information, most recently in December. As a result, Spirit CEO Ted Christie told investor analysts and reporters in early February that he expected a decision on the lawsuit "in the next 30 days or so." rice field.

Under President Biden, the Justice Department has taken a proactive approach to antitrust concerns, investigating the practices of large corporations, filing lawsuits to stop large corporate mergers, and jettisoning Boston and New York. Fired. A lawsuit was filed to block the partnership between Blue Airlines and American Airlines.

The agency is expected to get at least concessions from Spirit and JetBlue before the deal goes ahead unless it files a lawsuit to block the deal. offered to Opponents of the merger have called on the Department of Transportation to block the transfer of business certificates between the two airlines.

Transport Workers' International President John Samuelsen said in a letter Thursday to the Departments of Justice and Transportation that "these airlines will not operate until the management of the proposed airlines indicates their willingness to operate on favorable terms." will continue," he said. "We asked them to take necessary measures to prevent the relationship of trust between employees and passengers from collapsing."

The letter alleges that if the acquisition goes through, JetBlue management "does not intend to fully honor" the union agreement between JetBlue and Spirit workers.

JetBlue and his union negotiated his first workplace contract more than a year ago, but the union said the airline had failed to comply with rules, including new rules regarding flight attendant schedules.

In a message to airline flight attendants on Thursday night, JetBlue Chief Executive Officer Robin Hayes said the company will work closely with transportation unions to address concerns about the deal and merger. said he was doing. he said

He also said the airline plans to retain all JetBlue and Spirit employee bases, where employees typically start and end shifts, and that the airline's long-term commitment to no furloughs.

The Cabin Crew Association (C.W.A.) said it would support the merger after securing improvements and protection from management. This includes salary increases now and over the next two years, plans to improve cabin crew, and a promise to protect airlines from JetBlue. Seniority earned by spirit workers.

“I agree with the skepticism that the merger has created tremendous power for some airlines,” union president Sarah Nelson said in a letter to top lawmakers in Washington on Tuesday. The merger of JetBlue and Spirit will bring more competition to the airline industry and give workers more power along with options that benefit consumers."

Hoping the merger will go ahead, JetBlue has begun paying Spirit shareholders as agreed under the contract. This includes the $272 million paid out in his final three months of 2022, with an additional $130 million paid each month this year. JetBlue agreed to pay Spirit her $70 million and Spirit shareholders her $400 million if regulators block the deal.

JetBlue CEO Robin Hayes said the airline has begun preparations for the merger despite awaiting Justice Department action. Kevin Ditch / Getty Images

JetBlue's Hayes said in a call to investor analysts and reporters last month that even if a lawsuit were filed, his airline would complete the deal early next year if attempts to block the merger failed. said he could. He said he could. he said he wants

Previously, it took him 12-18 months to integrate the airlines after the merger was completed. To facilitate that process, Hayes said JetBlue has begun planning the necessary decisions.

In the transport union, some progressive lawmakers and consumer groups have expressed concern that the merger will further concentrate power in a tightly integrated industry. I worry that the economy will take away the competitive advantage that helped keep fares down in fast-growing markets, hurting consumers and workers.

His year's worth of flights on more than a dozen routes on his provider's Cirium, according to Aviation Data's New York Times analysis of his schedule, means that even after the sale, he will continue to invest in JetBlue as well. His Spirit had no monopoly either. We were able to acquire an overwhelming market share. Become. Most of these routes depart from Florida, where each airline has a strong presence.

JetBlue and Spirit claim the merger will boost competition. Together, these airlines account for about 10% of the U.S. airline market, still well below the 15% share of the fourth largest carrier, United Airlines. Alaska Airlines, the second largest airline, has 6% of his.

This acquisition will allow JetBlue to rapidly expand its network. That's a goal the company has had since at least Virgin's loss to Alaska in his 2016 bidding war in America. If the acquisition of Spirit is completed, JetBlue will retain its name, New York headquarters, and Hays leadership. Spirit's plane has been modified to match his jet-blue appearance and seat configuration with added legroom.

Even if regulators allow trade, airline integration can be difficult, requiring the integration of computer systems, aircraft, corporate culture, and trade unions with various workplace rules.

Lucid ramps up production as supply chain issues ease

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