Delta Air Lines today
unloaded for more than $82 million two regional airline subsidiaries that it
picked up during its merger with Northwest Airlines, though the carrier said it
would continue to use both Mesaba and Compass Airlines as
regional affiliates. The carrier said it
would use the proceeds of the sale to fund "general corporate
Delta is selling Mesaba to
Memphis, Tenn.-based Pinnacle Airlines Corp. for $62 million and Compass to St.
Louis-based Trans States Holdings for $20.5 million. The sales leave Comair as
Delta's last remaining wholly owned regional airline subsidiary.
"Comair was considered
by interested parties during the exploratory sale process," a spokesperson
said. "However, no offers were made by these interested parties to
purchase Comair." The spokesperson, however, said Delta would
"continue to explore alternatives" for Comair.
Delta said it is entering
into new Delta Connection agreements with Mesaba and Compass for regional operations, noting that the sale would
not impact routes or flight schedules. "Compass and Mesaba's combined
fleet of nearly 130 aircraft will continue to be dedicated to flying Delta
routes," the carrier said.
Delta Connection senior vice
president Don Bornhorst in a statement today said, "In recent years, the
Delta Connection carriers have made substantial progress in creating a
consistent customer experience across our brand with more First Class cabins,
enhanced food service, jetbridge boarding and other amenities Delta customers
expect when they fly Delta or Delta Connection flights. This transaction is
another step in positioning our regional airlines for future success and we
look forward to delivering even more improvements to customers in the more than
260 communities our partners serve."