DALLAS -- American Airlines says it will list its shares on the Nasdaq Stock Market under the ticker symbol “AAL” after completing a merger with US Airways and forming the world’s biggest airline.
American’s parent, AMR Corp., had been listed on the New York Stock Exchange as “AMR” until the shares were removed shortly after the company filed for bankruptcy protection in November 2011. They are currently available only over the counter under the symbol “AAMRQ.”
Tom Horton, the CEO of AMR, said the Nasdaq “offers a most advanced trading platform driven by innovation and efficiency.”
Shares of AMR and US Airways Group Inc. will be canceled and exchanged for stock in the new American Airlines Group Inc., which will be based in AMR’s home in Fort Worth, Texas. AMR creditors, bondholders and shareholders will get 72 percent of the new company, and US Airways shareholders will get the other 28 percent. At Friday’s stock prices, the new company would have a market value of more than $16.6 billion.
Shares of the largest U.S. airline companies — United Continental Holdings, Delta Air Lines, Southwest Airlines and US Airways — trade on the NYSE. The Nasdaq is home for JetBlue Airways, Spirit Airlines and Allegiant Travel Co., which operates Allegiant Air.
Daniel Cravens, director of investor relations at US Airways, said both exchanges are capable but the companies picked Nasdaq based on cost, execution and public relations. While the Nasdaq has a technology-centric reputation, he said, “it has done a great job of attracting other industries and is simply just a better fit for the new company and the direction we want to go.”
Leslie Pfrang with Class V Group, which helps companies with strategic planning including stock-exchange listings, said the image of a fresh start was critical.
“They’re trying to rebrand themselves,” she said of the airlines. “The Nasdaq has a growth, tech, emerging-company brand image.”