MIAMI — Alaska Airlines CEO, Brad Tilden, commented that there is still debate whether both brands, Alaska and Virgin America, should be kept separated. The Seattle Times reports.
The Seattle-based carrier recently announced plans to buy Virgin America, a deal which would transform the airline into a major powerhouse on the West Coast.
“We are looking at that because we do believe in the power of the Virgin America brand and we don’t want to lose all that loyalty and revenue that exists today,” Tilden said at the end of a speech at The Wings Club. As plans for the merger were announced last month, there were some concerns on what it might be lost from both carriers.
Although there is not a final decision made yet, Tilden remarked that there is a precedent for this and some European carriers. In the case of the mergers in the United States, especially from the last decade, the acquired company lost its brand.
According to The Seattle Times, Alaska enjoys a strong support in its hometown, while Virgin America is well positioned as well, particularly in Silicon Valley, “with its funky mood lighting, in-flight internet and individual TVs at each seat. Passengers can order meals or drinks from the screens and can even send a drink to another passenger.”