AMR maintains deal terms as suitors circle
US Airways Group, Delta Airlines and private equity firm TPG Capital are all exploring a potential deal, according to people familiar with the matter. British Airways, meanwhile, is keen to protect its partnership with AMR in the international oneworld airline alliance and would be open to making a minority investment if needed to solidify that relationship, separate sources said.
Unwelcome bidding has little chance of success under bankruptcy law that grants AMR exclusive rights to submit a reorganisation plan for up to 18 months. That makes it difficult for anyone to attempt a merger without AMR's blessing. Instead, with no shortage of courtship from would-be suitors, American Airlines can probably afford to choose a partner of its own liking if it concludes it needs one at the end of the restructuring process, the sources said.
Everyone's positioning themselves for when American Airlines does emerge from bankruptcy and everyone's covering their options. But just because you're building the battleship, doesn't mean you're going to succeed.
AMR CEO Tom Horton, who said the company is focused on thriving as a stand-alone carrier, said last month that opportunists could attempt a merger with AMR as it restructures.
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