American Airlines has confirmed plans to further solidify its partnership with Gol, the largest airline in Brazil.
Building on the two carriers’ initial codeshare offering, signed last year, the expanded partnership includes a larger and more lucrative loyalty program partnership.
It also expects to increase commercial cooperation with Gol to accelerate growth and create a more seamless experience for all customers.
American will invest US$200 million in 22.2 million newly issued preferred shares of Gol, in return for a 5.2 per cent stake in the company.
“American has long been the leading United States carrier to South America and our stronger partnership with Gol solidifies that leadership position,” said Robert Isom, president of American Airlines.
“Our long-haul network marries seamlessly with Gol’s strong domestic network in Brazil.
“Together, we will be able to offer customers flying to, through and from Brazil, access to the largest network with the lowest fares and the Americas’ biggest and best joint travel loyalty program.”
Gol will become American’s sole codeshare partner in Brazil and American will become Gol’s sole codeshare partner in the United States.
On their combined networks, customers can travel to more than 30 destinations served by American in the United States and more than 20 new destinations in South America served by Gol.
“This codeshare agreement between two of the leading airlines in the Americas combines our highly complementary route networks to offer customers a seamless travel experience with the largest number of flights and destinations in North and South America,” said Gol chief executive, Paulo Kakinoff.
“We believe that this will bolster Gol’s presence in international markets, accelerate our long-term growth, and maximize value for our shareholders.”
The strengthened relationship will also allow for further commercial cooperation in areas such as purchasing, sales tools and systems integrations, as allowed by regulatory and contractual limitations.
American will have the right to appoint one member to the Gol board of directors.