DALLAS American Airlines and US Airways have agreed to merge in an $11 billion deal that would create the world’s biggest airline.
The combined carrier will be called American Airlines and be based in Fort Worth, but US Airways Chief Executive Officer Doug Parker will run it.
The merger would reduce the number of major U.S. airlines to four: the new American, United, Delta and Southwest.
The deal is a coup for smaller US Airways Group Inc., which pushed for a merger almost as soon as American parent AMR Corp. filed for bankruptcy protection in November 2011.
While Parker runs the company, AMR CEO Tom Horton will serve as chairman until its first shareholder meeting, likely in mid-2014.
The boards of both companies approved the deal Wednesday. The companies announced it early Thursday and expect it to close in the third quarter of this year.