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Article from BTNews 20 SEPTEMBER 2010

Continental on the home run

CONTINENTAL AND UNITED (UAL) are now in the home straight to become the world’s largest airline following more than 98% vote at a Continental's shareholders meeting on Friday to approve UAL's US$3.17bn all-stock purchase of the Houston-based carrier.  UAL investors also approved the acquisition.  The airlines' aim is to complete the combination of their operations within the next 18 months and to realise US$1bn – US$1.2bn.  Jeff Smisek of Continental will move to Chicago becoming CEO and whilst some very senior appointments have already been made what happens further down the management pyramid is not clear.  A typical case is London, a major hub.  Here Continental, based in Horley, a leftover from Gatwick days, has been very successful in moving into Heathrow (where it will go to five services in November and six next spring).  United, with Heathrow offices, has abandoned New York and concentrated on Chicago. www.continental.com www.united.com

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