In an amended IPO filing with the US Securities & Exchange Commission, Gogo says Southwest on 23 January notified the Chicago-area company that it intended to de-install the Gogo system on the AirTran fleet “as part of the process by which Southwest Airlines’ and AirTran’s fleets will be merged”.
On 7 March, Gogo responded by filing suit in the Circuit Court of Cook County, Illinois “seeking a preliminary injunction barring AirTran from de-installing our equipment in violation of the inflight Internet connectivity agreement we entered into with AirTran”.
AirTran is a wholly owned subsidiary of Southwest.
Revenue from passengers using the Gogo service while flying on aircraft operated by AirTran accounted for less than 5 per cent of Gogo’s consolidated revenue for the year ended 31 December 2011, says Gogo in its amended filing. Nonetheless, Gogo has notified potential investors that if it does not succeed in its attempt to enjoin AirTran from de-installing its equipment, “our results of operations would be adversely affected”.
Southwest, which is in the midst of equipping its fleet with Row 44’s satellite-supported connectivity solution, recently began retrofitting AirTran Boeing 737s with Row 44, as well as its new Evolve interior. It is looking to lease the AirTran 717 fleet to Delta Air Lines.