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Southwest Airlines planning ‘radical changes’ at AirTran

Southwest Airlines planning ‘radical changes’ at AirTran

Southwest Airlines plans “radical changes” at AirTran Airways, the low-cost airline it acquired in May.

Gary Kelly, chief executive at the Dallas-based carrier, said: “I think we can improve the profitability and so absolutely you are going to see a different offering there.”

In remarks following an address at the Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce, Kelly added: “I think we are going to make some radical changes to the AirTran flight schedule.

“We can improve the schedule. I think we can improve the fares.”

Southwest Airlines is the largest airline in the low-cost sector in the world. The carrier paid $1.4 billion for AirTran earlier this year.

Following the purchase, Southwest hops to expand in United States east coast markets, building a presence in New York, Washington and Atlanta.

Southwest celebrated its 40th anniversary in June.

Veronica Biggins

Southwest Airlines has also announced Veronica Biggins, a former executive at AirTran, will join its board of directors.

Biggins is presently a managing director in the Atlanta office of Diversified Search, a privately-held executive and board search firm focused on helping corporations build effective leadership teams.

She joined the company (formerly Hodge Partners) in 2007.

“We are honoured to have Veronica join the board, and we know that she will be a great addition to the comprehensive leadership that currently sits on the Southwest board of directors,” concluded Kelly.