American Airlines today made this announcement:
- American proposes acquiring a minority ownership stake in JetSMART allowing the carrier to rapidly grow its low-cost network in South America.
- Customers would be able to earn and redeem AAdvantage miles on JetSMART flights.
- Broad connectivity and robust loyalty program would create a compelling customer offering in Latin America.
- Proposed codeshare agreement between the two airlines would create more options for customers traveling between the United States and South America.
American Airlines and JetSMART have signed a letter of intent to create the broadest network and most rewarding customer offering in the Americas. This proposed partnership would uniquely tie together the full-service, global presence of American with the complementary network of ultra-low-cost carrier JetSMART in South America to offer competitive fares and expanded travel options for flyers throughout North and South America.
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Operating from Chile and Argentina, JetSMART is a portfolio airline of Indigo Partners, one of the world’s premier developers of new generation ultra-low-cost airlines. JetSMART operates a modern fleet of Airbus A320 aircraft and offers short-haul domestic and international service to 33 destinations throughout South America. American has served Latin America since 1942 and offers service to 17 destinations in South America from its U.S. hubs in Dallas-Fort Worth, Miami and New York. Through the two airlines’ codeshare, customers would be able to travel seamlessly throughout the Americas.
Under the proposed transaction, American would invest in JetSMART to facilitate this growth and give American a minority ownership stake in the short-haul South American carrier.
Additionally, American and Indigo Partners would jointly commit to provide additional capital to fund potential future opportunities in the region. American can strengthen and grow its South American network through this proposed partnership to attract more travelers in more markets. This proposed partnership, along with others in Latin America, would also give American customers access to more low fares and travel options on a network that is twice as big as other alliances.
The intended investments and codeshare agreements are subject to definitive documentation and any required governmental and regulatory approvals.