Low-Cost Carriers Spirit Airlines and Frontier to Combineby Daniel McCarthy /
Two of the U.S.’s most prominent low-cost carriers are merging.
Spirit Airlines and Frontier Group Holdings announced on Monday morning that they had agreed to a $2.9 billion cash-and-stock merger deal, which be valued at $6.6 billion with net debt and liabilities, coming together to create a major player in the ultra-low fare market.
The deal was approved unanimously approved by both boards of directors of both companies and is now expected to close in the second half of 2022.
Together, the two will be able to offer 1,000 daily flights to over 145 destinations in 19 countries along with $1 billion in annual consumer savings and increase access to ultra-low fares with new routes to “underserved communities across the United States, Latin America, and the Caribbean.”
“We are thrilled to join forces with Frontier to further democratize air travel,” Spirit CEO and president Ted Christie said on Monday.
“This transaction is centered around creating an aggressive ultra-low fare competitor to serve our guests even better, expand career opportunities for our Team Members and increase competitive pressure, resulting in more consumer-friendly fares for the flying public,” Christie added.
According to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics, Spirit was the 8th largest North American airline pre-pandemic, while Frontier was the 10th largest. The combined passenger count from 2019 would put the merged company at about the same passenger count as JetBlue Airways.