Frontier name to remain, Midwest name to be dropped
By Steve Raabe The Denver Post
Posted: 04/13/2010 10:18:42 AM MDT
Republic Airways officials announced this morning that Frontier will be the operating brand name for Republic's Frontier and Midwest carriers.
Republic's Vice President of Marketing Ian Arthur said that Frontier had stronger growth potential between the brand names Frontier and Midwest.
About 400 Frontier employees assembled at a Coors Field party suite for the announcement, stood and erupted in raucous cheers when the announcement was made.
Frontier's popular animal-themed marketing campaign will also survive and be the new brand's focus in future marketing. As a concession to Midwest, Republic officials said chocolate chip cookies will be served on all flights, a trademark amenity of Midwest.
The announcement followed months of speculation about the future of the Frontier and Midwest brands after Indianapolis-based Republic Airways bought the airlines last year.
Republic had said that it planned to "harmonize" the brands in a way that would recognize the identities of the airlines and their respective customer loyalty.
Frontier, born in Denver, is known for its "A Whole Different Animal" ad campaign, with talking tail animals and its seatback TVs.
Last month, about 150 Frontier employees and fans rallied in downtown Denver in support of preserving Frontier's name and animals.
"Workers at Frontier Airlines are proud of their hometown airline and their great customer service model," Teamsters union official David Bourne said in a letter this week to Republic chief executive Bryan Bedford. "I hope that you retain the strength of their pride in their service."
Midwest, based in Milwaukee, has a longtime motto of "Best Care in the Air" and is known for serving chocolate-chip cookies baked inflight.
Bedford said that in addition to slogans and ad campaigns, the rebranding decision involved unifying the airlines' policies, procedures, pay scales, benefits, labor unions, information technology systems, bookkeeping systems and management.