Citing airline industry executives and analysts, the newspaper said the merger could lead other airlines to pursue mergers. United Airlines and Continental Airlines have explored the possibility of merging, the newspaper said.
Pilots at Delta and Northwest have yet to agree to a formula for merging their ranks in a new company, and pilots at Northwest said they would oppose the merger, the newspaper said.
The deal reached late Monday provides that Northwest shareholders receive 1.25 Delta shares for each of the more than 230 million Northwest shares outstanding, The Times reported.
The new airline would be known as Delta and would be governed by a board made up of seven board members from the current Delta and five from Northwest. The Air Line Pilots Association would also have a seat on the board.
Delta Chief Executive Richard H. Anderson would run the new entity and Delta Chairman Daniel A. Carp would remain as chairman, with Northwest board member Roy J. Bostock serving as vice chairman, the newspaper said.