United Airlines stated it is not threatened by Delta Air Lines and V Australia’s planned trans-Pacific alliance, adding no recent developments in the market have deterred it from remaining on the route (The Australian, 30-Jul-2010). United Vice-President Resources Planning, Greg Kaldahl, stated the airline is the only one now offering first and business class on all flights on the route and has updated its premium product to rival “anything available in the marketplace”. He added the carrier has a competitive edge in the market as there is no significant US destination it cannot continue on to with one stop through San Francisco or Los Angeles and Delta has nowhere near the same connectivity. Mr Kaldahl also noted the airline industry requires structural change and United’s consolidation with Continental Airlines is the right step to “provide a return to shareholders”.
United Airlines: “I think everybody has to look at their results and decide whether this is the best use of an airplane. For us, this certainly is the best use of the airplanes that we dedicate to this market … Linking with V Australia doesn't change that [Delta’s fewer US connections]. It doesn't add, for example, 15 new routes out of LA to take customers into the interior of the US. And let me drive that point home with this: United had the right to object to this application with the Department of Transportation and very purposefully chose not to. And that's not something that we forgot to object or anything. We looked at that link-up and said there's nothing about that link-up that we find objectionable or, frankly, threatening from a competitive perspective,” Greg Kaldahl, Vice President Resources Planning. Source: The Australian, 30-Jul-2010.