Pilot's Union Lauds Return Of 'Spirit Of Delta'
Delta Air Lines Inc. announced Monday its reorganization plan
has received enough creditor support to be approved, based on
unofficial voting results... clearing the path for the carrier to
emerge from bankruptcy April 30.
The Atlanta-based airline said the preliminary results are
showing more than 95 percent of ballots cast favored the plan,
according to the Associated Press.
Delta creditors also voted on a reorganization plan by Delta's
wholly owned regional airline subsidiary, Comair... and it, too,
appears to have been approved.
Final tallies will be filed with the US Bankruptcy Court in New
York later this week with a confirmation hearing scheduled for
"We appreciate our creditors' strong vote of confidence in our
plan, which we believe both maximizes their recovery and builds a
foundation for Delta's long-term success," said Ed Bastian, Delta's
chief financial officer.
Both of Delta's plans would typically have to be approved by
holders of two-thirds of the claims and a majority of the number of
individual creditors for it to pass.
As ANN has reported, the
carrier's reorganization plan allows for unsecured creditors to get
between 62 percent and 78 percent of the amount of allowed claims
and the company estimates it will be worth $9.4 billion to $12
billion when it emerges from Chapter 11.
Delta, the nation's third-largest carrier, filed for bankruptcy
protection in September 2005.
Even the union that represents Delta pilots states the airline
has come a long way from a year ago, when it faced the threat of a
pilot strike. The airline ultimately got $280 million in annual
concessions from its pilots, and there was no work stoppage.
"Early on, it was pretty ugly here," Lee Moak, chairman of the
executive committee of the Air Line Pilots Association said. "Right
now, we're exiting bankruptcy with the opportunity to make our
first dollars. It's starting to look like it's going to be a
profitable airline, as long as everyone executes the business
The carrier has projected it will have a pretax profit of $816
million in 2007, excluding any special and reorganization
Moak said the emergence from bankruptcy has boosted employee
morale as well.
"It's a lot like it was 20 or 30 years ago when people were
hired by that Delta Air Lines," he said. "I watch what the aviation
reporters write about the spirit at a lot of these low-cost
carriers, the entrepreneurial spirit of JetBlue and Southwest. We
have that spirit back."