Encore: Southwest vs American Airlines | The Darling of Deregulation | 4


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As deregulation dawns, Southwest Airlines’ founder and CEO are locked in a power struggle. In the middle is Herb Kelleher, Southwest’s corporate attorney. And after 18 months serving as a punching bag for the company’s top brass, he’s had enough.

But as Southwest deals with a succession crisis, American Airlines is facing another emergency. It needs money, fast. The company is cash-poor after investing in its proprietary online reservation system, SABRE. The situation is so dire CEO Al Casey turns to a drastic option — moving the company’s headquarters from its homebase in New York City to Dallas.

Just as American is getting a financial lift, Southwest takes a nosedive. Deregulation has the company eyeing expansion routes, but the powers that be will do anything to stop it.

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