Alaska Airlines CEO says he might keep Virgin America brand

    According to CEO Brad Tilton, "we don't want to lose all that loyalty and revenue that exists today,"

    NEW YORK (AP) — Alaska Airlines CEO Brad Tilden said Wednesday that he might keep the Virgin America brand, running it and Alaska as two different products within the same airline group.

    In April, Alaska plans to buy Virgin America for $2.6 billion, a deal which would make it a West Coast powerhouse. Both airlines have very loyal — but different — followings and almost immediately both groups expressed fears that the combination would kill off what they love about their own airline.

    A decision hasn't yet been made but Tilden noted that European carriers have kept their own identity following mergers.

    "We are looking at that because we do believe in the power of the Virgin America brand and we don't want to lose all that loyalty and revenue that exists today," Tilden said.

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