Reuters reports a federal jury ruled in favor of the former airline, ending an 11-year lawsuit against global distribution system Sabre.
Sabre Used Monopoly Power, but Did Not Harm US Airways
The original lawsuit was brought to court in 2011 by the former Phoenix-based airline. In their complaint, US Airways alleged that Sabre abused their monopoly power to make it difficult for travel agents to book lower cost seats on their flights, while creating a restrictive agreement to be on their system.
After five days of deliberations, the jury found that Sabre did abuse their monopoly power, creating harm for US Airways. However, the group fell short of saying the restrictions were unreasonable and caused undue competition problems for the airline. As a result, US Airways was awarded $1 in damages.
Attorneys for American – which merged with US Airways in 2013 – claim a moral victory from the suit, saying the decision should “…discourage further misconduct by Sabre and bring needed competition to airline distribution.” Representatives for Sabre say the $1 decision directly reflected the evidence presented against them and were “pleased” with the decision.
This decision closes a door on one of the most interesting lawsuits in modern aviation. Sabre was spun off from American Airlines in 2000 to create an independent company, while US Airways would effectively take over American – then controlled by AMR Corporation – to form American Airlines Group.
Sabre Continues Operations in Three Sectors
Although the lawsuit will affect the aviation space, consumers may not see much of a change in their business. Sabre sold online travel agency Travelocity in 2015, and now operates as a technology provider for the commercial aviation and hospitality industries.
Source: frugal travel guy