Republic Airways Holdings has elected to use the Frontier name for its branded operations, which means the Midwest Airlines name will cease to exist within roughly 18 months.
It's an end to a tumultuous last couple of years for Midwest, which fended off a takeover attempt by AirTran in 2007 before being sold to TPG and Northwest Airlines in a deal that was finalised in early 2008. After floundering for most of the last two years, Midwest was sold to Republic in July of 2009. The US regional operator closed on its acquisition of Frontier in October of the same year after Frontier exited Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.
Midwest officially launched scheduled operations in June 1984, and was known for its unique customer service championed by its famous chocolate chip cookies offered on its flights. It origins date back to 1948 when Kimberly Clark began providing air transport to its executives.
Today during the official announcement that Frontier would be the preferred name for the branded operations Republic vice president of marketing Ian Arthur said the combined entity would add 15 new routes this year, which equates to roughly 7% growth.
Republic's decision to select the Frontier name concludes extensive research conducted by the company of Frontier and Midwest employees, frequent flyers and "uncommitted" flyers, says Arthur.
Republic estimates the operations integration of Frontier and Midwest will be complete by November of this year followed by the official combining of the brands in October 2011. Arthur says the famous cookies will also remain as part of the Frontier brand.