When Allegiant President John Redmond adds the CEO title in June, he'll have to deal with some of the same issues, such as the pandemic, that he's trying to handle now. Add one more thing to the list: Frontier could become a more formidable flight competitor if it gets the OK to merge with Spirit.
Allegiant Travel, the flight and leisure trip package seller, appointed its current president, John Redmond, as the company’s new CEO beginning June 1.
Redmond, who has served as president for the past five years and been a board member for around 15, will replace current CEO Maurice Gallagher Jr. Gallagher, who is Allegiant’s largest shareholder after taking control of the airline in 2001, will transition from chairman to executive chairman.
Allegiant’s announcement Monday about the changing of the guard at the CEO slot occurred coincidentally on the same day that Frontier announced it would merge with and take control of Spirit Airlines in a deal that values Spirit at $6.6 billion.
That merger, if it secures regulatory approval this summer, could heighten competition among low-cost airlines. Frontier and Allegiant have well more than 100 overlapping routes, and Allegiant and Spirit fly the same routes minimally.
Allegiant, though, is very much a hybrid airline and leisure travel package provider, bundling flights, hotels and car rentals so doesn’t compete with Frontier and Spirit in a significant way when it comes to trip packages.
Allegiant is traditionally among the highest profiting U.S. airlines, although in the fourth quarter its net income fell 28 percent year over year to $10.7 billion. Executives cited the cost of compensating passengers for cancelled flights because of crew shortages and Covid disruptions as dragging down earnings.
Allegiant currently flies more than 600 routes to more than 130 U.S. cities, but could be expanding substantially in Mexico. Allegiant has a proposed deal, which is pending regulatory approval, with Viva Aerobus to merge their Mexico-U.S. networks.
“I am honored to be named the next CEO of Allegiant Travel Company,” Redmond said in a statement. “Under Maury’s transformational leadership, Allegiant has evolved from a single airplane airline to a fully-integrated travel company and completely redefined how consumers think about leisure travel. I could not be more excited about the opportunities ahead.”
The CEO transition at Allegiant is not an isolated incident: There has been a bevy of CEO changes recently.
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Photo credit: An Allegiant Air Airbus A319. John Redmond will take over as Allegiant Travel CEO on June 1, 2022. Allegiant Air