The airline auction battle for bankrupt Frontier Airlines picked up a headwind today as Southwest bid $170 million for the carrier.
Southwest’s bid is well above a previous bid of about $109 million by Republic Airways Holdings Inc., which recently acquired Midwest Airlines.
Assuming Republic stays in the running, this sets the stage for an bankruptcy court auction Thursday, Southwest said.
The cash proposal is 50 percent more than the $113.6 million preliminary offer made July 30, the airline said.
Acquiring Denver-based Frontier would broaden Southwest’s foothold in the Rocky Mountain region, enable it to operate flights outside the U.S. for the first time and gain access to Atlanta, the world’s busiest airport.