American Airlines and US Airways have agreed to merge into the world’s biggest airline.
The boards of American parent AMR Corp. and US Airways approved the deal late Wednesday, according to four people close to the situation.
The deal has been in the works since August, when creditors pushed for merger talks so they could decide which earned them a better return: a merger or Horton’s plan for an independent airline.
American has been restructuring under bankruptcy protection since late 2011. AMR creditors and possibly its shareholders will own 72 percent of the stock, and US Airways Group Inc. shareholders will get the rest, three of the people said.
The reported deal would need approval from competition regulators and a US bankruptcy court before going ahead.
If the deal is approved by American’s bankruptcy judge and antitrust regulators, the new American will have more than 900 planes, 3,200 daily flights and about 95,000 employees, not counting regional affiliates. It will expand American’s current reach on the East Coast and overseas, the AP reported.