JetBlue Airways agrees to buy Spirit
JetBlue Airways offered to buy Spirit for $3.8 billion after a merger between Spirit and Frontier airlines fell through Wednesday. Spirit was originally opposed to the JetBlue deal, saying antitrust regulators wouldn’t let it go through, but Spirit’s board of directors couldn’t get its shareholders on board with the Frontier merger. If antitrust regulators let the deal go through, it would be finalized in early 2024, and JetBlue would become the fifth largest airline behind the big four—American, United, Delta, and Southwest.
Will ticket prices go up? Some, like the anti-merger American Economic Liberties Project, said the deal would increase other budget airlines’ prices. But JetBlue CEO Robin Hayes said a larger company would be competition for the big four, which together control about 80 percent of the U.S. market. The combined companies would be based out of JetBlue’s home in New York and have a 458-plane fleet.
Dig deeper: Listen to Mary Reichard on The World and Everything in It tell the true tale of a flight attendant who delivered a baby 40,000 feet above the ground.
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