We'll have more details about this decision soon from J. David McSwane, who attended today's announcement press conference. In the meantime, look below for the official press release and check out our photo gallery of shots by Frontier pilot Ken Odey from a recent "Save the Animals" rally. The participants' cries were heard -- and Griz and company will live to roar, squawk, growl and tweet another day.
Apr 13, 2010
Republic Airways Announces Branding Decision
Animals Stay, Brand Promise Combines Best of Two into One
DENVER, April 13, 2010 -- Republic Airways Holdings (NASDAQ: RJET) today revealed that the Frontier name and famous "spokesanimals" will be the face of the unified branded airline. The announcement was made this morning during simultaneous press conferences in Frontier's hometown of Denver and Midwest's hometown of Milwaukee.
"This decision was an emotional one for everyone involved," said Bryan Bedford, president, chairman and CEO of Republic Airways Holdings, Inc. "While the research showed that customers preferred the Frontier brand, they also expressed a strong loyalty to both brands based on affordability, convenience, destinations and delivery of a differentiated experience. As we work to integrate these two brands into a unified Frontier Airlines, you can expect to see a lot of influence from the Midwest brand. This will include the introduction of the iconic Midwest Airlines chocolate chip cookie on all Frontier flights this summer."
Bedford went on to say, "This airline is now bigger and stronger, with an immense opportunity for sustainable, profitable growth in Milwaukee, Denver and across our network. We are launching service to new destinations out of our Milwaukee and Denver hubs and we are adding more jobs in the communities we serve."
The 2010 growth includes ten new destinations out of the Denver hub and five new destinations out of the Milwaukee hub. As a result, the carrier will grow by seven percent in seat miles this year, three times the industry average. Additionally, the Company employs more than 5,700 aviation professionals across its branded network with 1,200 employees in Milwaukee and 4,100 employees in Denver, with more to come as Frontier's expansion continues.
Republic purchased Midwest Airlines in July 2009 and Frontier Airlines in October 2009. Since then, the two carriers have operated as partners with the goal of eventually integrating into one carrier. Over the last few months the Company has conducted extensive independent research with both consumers and employees to help in the decision-making process.
"This decision is a critical milestone for Republic's branded operation and allows us to focus on serving our guests better," said Ian Arthur, Republic's vice president of marketing and branding. "Together as Frontier Airlines we make a very important brand promise to our guests. Our promise is to deliver a better and different flying experience, because it is the best care in the air."
The Company has set a very aggressive integration timeline of 12-18 months. In that time, the Company will work to integrate the customer experience and cultivate the attributes that will set Frontier Airlines apart in the industry. A Web site has been developed to communicate with the public throughout this process at FrontierMidwest.com. The site will include a timeline of all the major milestones that the Company will achieve throughout the integration; including the move to one Web site, one frequent flyer program and the implantation of new product attributes.
"There's still a lot of work to be done in integrating these two carriers," stated Arthur. "Throughout this process we will keep an open ear to our customer's wants and needs. We appreciate your patience and support as we continue to develop an airline that treats our customers with respect, and will strive to provide those little things that make all the difference in our guests' travel experience."
For more information, please visit FrontierAirlines.com.
About Frontier Airlines
Frontier Airlines is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Republic Airways Holdings, Inc., an airline holding company that owns Chautauqua Airlines, Lynx Aviation, Midwest Airlines, Republic Airlines and Shuttle America. Currently in its 16th year of operations, Frontier operates more than 550 daily departures and arrivals from its three hubs at Denver International Airport, Milwaukee's General Mitchell International Airport and Kansas City International Airport. Frontier offers routes to more than 70 destinations in the United States, Mexico and Costa Rica.
On April 13, 2010, Republic Airways announced that its two branded carriers, Frontier and Midwest, would combine under the Frontier Airlines name. The integration of these two airlines is expected to take 12-18 months.
For more in-depth information on Frontier Airlines and to book tickets, please visit its Web site at FrontierAirlines.com.