TEMPE, AZ - US Airways CEO Doug Parker told shareholders Thursday that a merger with his airline is the only way American Airlines can reclaim leadership of the industry.
A combined US Airways-American could "compete with anybody," Parker said.
American has lost market share to Delta and United over the past five years, a trend that Parker says won't be fixed through bankruptcy reorganization.
The merged airline would be the market leader across two-thirds of the country, he said at US Air's annual shareholder meeting.
American's parent, AMR Corp. filed for bankruptcy protection on Nov. 29.
Its CEO, Tom Horton, has repeatedly said he wants his airline to emerge from bankruptcy before considering a merger.
Parker hasn't been that patient. He struck a deal with American's three main unions to support a merger.
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