United Airlines Announces Headquarters To Remain at Iconic Willis Tower with Major Investments to Transform Current Workspace
March 13, 2019
CHICAGO, March 13, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- United Airlines announced today it will keep its headquarters at the iconic Willis Tower in the airline's hometown of Chicago, while partnering with the building's owner, Blackstone, in making major investments to completely transform the current workspace and experience.
The new deal to remain at Willis Tower provides the airline with a tremendous opportunity to completely reimagine the workspace from the bottom up. Over the coming months and years, United will be embarking on a process to redesign workspaces to allow employees to better collaborate, use the latest technology and interact with each other with the end goal of providing unmatched service to front-line employees and customers. By making these investments, it also enables United to better recruit and retain top talent from the Chicagoland area and beyond who have come to expect modern and more efficient places of work.
"As one of the city's largest private employers and its hometown airline, we are excited to deepen our roots here in Chicago while making the investments needed to reimagine the headquarters for our employees," said Oscar Munoz, United's chief executive officer. "The investments we are making will help our employees provide unparalleled service to our front-line colleagues and to our customers as we continue to improve and realize our airline's full potential."
The new agreement extends United's existing lease to March 31, 2033. Additionally, Blackstone is already investing more than $500 million into Willis Tower for all tenants, which will transform the building from the inside out.
"We are thrilled with United's decision to remain at Willis Tower in a reimagined headquarters," said Jon Gray, Blackstone's president. "This is terrific news for Chicago and a testament to our exciting $500 million revitalization program underway at the property. We look forward to partnering with United in this effort. Willis Tower will continue its role as an iconic business, retail and tourist destination in the heart of the city."
As one of the most ideally situated buildings in the city, with easy access to all CTA train lines, Union and Ogilvie Stations, as well as nearby bus stops, Willis Tower already provides distinct advantages and will remain attractive to future job seekers throughout the metropolitan region. Commercial real estate services firm JLL represented United in the deal.
Every customer. Every flight. Every day.
In 2019, United is focusing more than ever on its commitment to its customers, looking at every aspect of its business to ensure that the carrier keeps customers' best interests at the heart of its service. In addition to today's announcement, United recently released a re-imagined version of the most downloaded app in the airline industry and made DIRECTV free for every passenger on 211 aircraft, offering more than 100 channels on seat back monitors on more than 30,000 seats. The multimillion-dollar investment in improving inflight entertainment options will benefit the more than 29 million people expected to fly United's DIRECTV-enabled planes this year.
United's shared purpose is "Connecting People. Uniting the World." We are more focused than ever on our commitment to customers through a series of innovations and improvements designed to help build a great experience: Every customer. Every flight. Every day. Together, United Airlines and United Express operate approximately 4,800 flights a day to 353 airports across five continents. In 2018, United and United Express operated more than 1.7 million flights carrying more than 158 million customers. United is proud to have the world's most comprehensive route network, including U.S. mainland hubs in Chicago, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, New York/Newark, San Francisco and Washington, D.C. United operates 770 mainline aircraft and the airline's United Express carriers operate 559 regional aircraft. United is a founding member of Star Alliance, which provides service to 193 countries via 28 member airlines. For more information, visit united.com, follow @United on Twitter and Instagram or connect on Facebook. The common stock of United's parent, United Continental Holdings, Inc., is traded on the Nasdaq under the symbol "UAL".
SOURCE United Airlines