Delta CEO: NW Integration Underway
Even before the European Commission this month cleared the merger of Delta Air Lines and Northwest Airlines, the transaction was on track for finalization by the end of the year, Delta CEO Richard Anderson told journalists during a press meeting at the National Business Travel Association Annual Convention and Exposition in Los Angeles last month. Anderson said Delta and Northwest already have "26 teams that are chaired by either an executive from Northwest or an executive from Delta" working on integration, with IT one of the biggest challenges. The two carriers will take a "best-in-breed" approach on integrating back-office systems, he said. "It will take some time to do the reservation system. We are a bit fortunate in that both our reservations systems are maintained on the same mainframe and operated by Travelport. Technology is such that now the front end and the back end can be made to harmonize, so regardless of which reservation system you pick, the interface the employee sees can be either."