Atlanta-based Delta Air Lines, Inc., announced Thursday that it
has agreed to sell two of its wholly owned regional airline subsidiaries,
Eagan-based Mesaba Airlines and Minneapolis-based Compass Airlines, for a
combined $82.5 million.
Mesaba Airlines has been sold to Memphis, Tennessee-based
Pinnacle Airlines Corporation for $62 million, and Compass Airlines has been
sold to St. Louis-based Trans States Holdings, Inc., for $20.5 million.
Under the terms of the agreements, Mesaba and Compass will
continue to serve Delta customers with long-term, extendable agreements, which
range from seven to 12 years depending on aircraft type.
In addition, both Mesaba and Compass will continue to be
headquartered in the Twin cities and their current presidents, John Spanjers of
Mesaba and Tim Campbell of Compass, will continue leading the airlines under
the new ownership.
Both subsidiaries are, and will continue to be, members of the
Delta Connection program—a group of carriers that are under service agreements
Delta said that proceeds from the sales will be used for general
Pinnacle Airlines Corporation is the parent company of Pinnacle
Airlines, Inc., and Colgan Air, Inc. Pinnacle Airlines, Inc., operates a fleet
of 142 regional jets and Colgan Air, Inc., operates a fleet of 48 regional
turboprops as Continental Connection, United Express, and US Airways Express.
Trans States Holdings, Inc., is the parent company of two
regional airlines, Trans States Airlines and GoJet Airlines. Together, Trans
States Holdings’ regional airlines serve nearly five million passengers
annually to 69 cities on 330 daily flights. Trans States currently operates
flights as United Express and US Airways Express.