Delta rings stock exchange closing bell, marks 10 years since stock relisting

Source: Delta Air Lines

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Source: Delta Air Lines

Delta Air Lines on Wednesday marked 10 years since its stock was relisted on the New York Stock Exchange after emerging from Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

CEO Ed Bastian and former CEO Gerald Grinstein, who headed the airline 10 years ago, marked the occasion by ringing the closing bell on the bell podium of the New York Stock Exchange on Wednesday.

Over the past 10 years, Delta has gone from struggling to financially thriving with billions of dollars in profits and a leading position in the industry. But it has also encountered some turbulence along the way.

Here’s a brief timeline of the last 10 years at Delta:

--April 25, 2007: Delta's reorganization plan is confirmed, allowing the company to emerge from bankruptcy after filing for Chapter 11 in 2005.

--May 3, 2007: Delta executives rang the New York Stock Exchange's opening bell from Atlanta, as their new post-bankruptcy stock began trading, pushing an electronic button that triggered a bell sound. Delta executives then flew to New York to ring the closing bell. "Welcome to independence day," said Ed Bastian, then-chief financial officer and now CEO.

-- Aug. 21, 2007: Richard Anderson is named the next CEO. He declares: "There is one plan at Delta, and that is to be profitable."

--Aug. 30, 2007: Delta CEO Gerald Grinstein, 75, retires after piloting the airline through bankruptcy and a campaign called "Keep Delta My Delta" to rebuff a hostile takeover attempt by US Airways. He leaves the company's headquarters as hundreds of employees line the driveway.

-- April 2008: Delta announces deal to acquire Northwest Airlines. The deal closes in October 2008, allowing Delta to leapfrog to the position of world's largest airline -- at least temporarily until it is surpassed by other airline mergers in subsequent years. The combination of the two carriers' route networks gives Delta the scale to become a dominant player in the airline industry.

--October 2010: United and Continental airlines merge. The deal would be followed by mergers that married Southwest and AirTran, and American and US Airways.

--November 2010: Delta flight attendants vote against unionizing, keeping company mostly non-union even after absorbing mostly-unionized Northwest.

--December 2011: Delta buys a stake in Brazilian carrier GOL for $100 million, the first in a string of such deals with foreign carriers to boost its international footprint.

--April 2012: Delta buys a Pennsylvania oil refinery.

--October 2013: Anderson voices opposition to plan to commercialize a second airport in metro Atlanta, in Paulding County.

--December 2014: Anderson advocates for a Georgia transportation funding bill, saying, "If that means raising taxes to fund our roads, it means raising taxes to fund our roads." That and Delta's opposition to religious liberty legislation led conservative lawmakers to end Delta's fuel tax break in Georgia.

--February 2015: Amid a dispute over government support of growing Middle Eastern airlines, Anderson says there was "great irony" in a comment by Qatar Airways' CEO that U.S. carriers got government aid after 9/11, "given the fact that our industry was really shocked by the terrorism of 9/11 which came from terrorists from the Arabian peninsula."

--July 2015: Delta pilots vote down a proposed labor contract.

--October 2015: Delta abruptly leaves industry group Airlines for America, citing policy differences.

--February 2016: Richard Anderson announces he will retire, with Ed Bastian succeeding him as CEO.  Delta also gets a long-awaited investment grade credit rating.

--April 2016: As one of his last public acts as CEO, Anderson signs a new 20 year lease with the City of Atlanta. Both Anderson and Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed fought back tears.

--August 2016: A computer system meltdown that cascaded into days of flight cancellations put a national spotlight on shortcomings in Delta's technology infrastructure.

--December 2016: Delta pilots vote to ratify a new labor contract including raises of 30.2 percent over four years, after rejecting an earlier tentative deal in 2015.

--January 2017: Delta reports a $4.4 billion profit for 2016.

--April 2017: A one-day thunderstorm in Atlanta causes five days of flight cancellations on Delta, highlighting problems with crew scheduling and tracking that left crews displaced and passengers stranded at airports around the country.

--May 3, 2017: Delta CEO Ed Bastian and former CEO Gerald Grinstein celebrate 10 years since the relisting of the stock, by ringing the closing bell at the New York Stock Exchange.

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