Here's how things are stacking up. The Integration Steering Committee (ISC) will be made up of the following officers:
- Glenn Tilton, Chairman and CEO
- Kathryn Mikells, EVP and Chief Financial Officer
- Pete McDonald, EVP and Chief Administrative Officer
- Jeff Smisek, Chairman, President, and CEO
- Zane Rowe, EVP and Chief Financial Officer
- Jim Compton, EVP and Chief Marketing Officer
There are only two things surprising about this announcement. One, it's shocking that they've only been able to create three TLAs (Three-Letter Acronyms) here. I expected so much more. Two, as you can see, John Tague is nowhere to be found. The most important commercial execs at both airlines are on this team . . . except for Tague.
What does that mean? I suppose the argument could be made that Tague will focus on running the airline while everyone else is tied up, but I don't buy it. If that's the case, you'd think that they would have at least mentioned him in the letter sent to employees, but I haven't seen him mentioned in quite some time . . . anywhere.
More likely is that Tague will not be a part of the combined airline, and that's exactly what I would have expected. It's clear that Jeff Smisek will be running this ship, and John Tague was the greatest potential threat in terms of a power struggle. If I were Jeff, I wouldn't want Tague around, and that's what appears to be happening. Continental is taking the reins.
Photo via United Airlines