Delta and American Express extend SkyMiles credit card partnership

Agreement provides Delta with more than $2 billion in combined incremental liquidity and contract enhancements

Agreement to result in expanded opportunities for American Express across Co-brand credit card, Membership Rewards, merchant services and travel

Delta Air Lines and American Express announced a multi-year extension of their exclusive Co-brand Credit Card partnerships, which commenced in 1996.

The companies also agreed to extensions of their other partnership arrangements, including American Express Membership Rewards, merchant acceptance and travel.

As part of the broad-based partnership agreement, Delta will receive an immediate $1 billion boost to its liquidity from a purchase of SkyMiles. Delta expects to receive an additional $1 billion from contract improvements through 2010.

In return, American Express will be able to grow the value of its Co-brand Cards and the Membership Rewards program. American Express Cardmembers will be offered expanded options for booking travel on the world’s largest airline. In addition, American Express will have the opportunity to increase merchant acceptance in more places in the Midwest region of the United States.

In late 2009, Delta plans to merge Northwest WorldPerks with SkyMiles to create the world’s premier airline loyalty program and a consolidated Co-brand Credit Card program. Northwest WorldPerks Co-brand Cardholders can continue to earn WorldPerks miles just as they do today on their U.S. Bank issued cards, and all WorldPerks miles earned prior to integration will be safe and transferred in full to Delta SkyMiles when the two programs are integrated.

About Devesh Agarwal

A electronics and automotive product management, marketing and branding expert, he was awarded a silver medal at the Lockheed Martin innovation competition 2010. He is ranked 6th on Mashable's list of aviation pros on Twitter and in addition to Bangalore Aviation, he has contributed to leading publications like Aviation Week, Conde Nast Traveller India, The Economic Times, and The Mint (a Wall Street Journal content partner). He remains a frequent flier and shares the good, the bad, and the ugly about the Indian aviation industry without fear or favour.

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