In a move aimed at resolving trademark litigation, Northern Pacific Airways, an Alaskan startup airline, announced its intention to operate under the name “New Pacific Airlines” pending approval from federal regulators.
The legal dispute at the heart of this rebranding effort involves BNSF Railway, which brought forth a lawsuit to protect the trademark of one of its predecessors, Northern Pacific Railway. This historical railway merged with other lines in 1970 to eventually become BNSF, and the lawsuit raised concerns over the shared name between the railway and the airline.
“This transition represents the right strategic move for our business and underscores our commitment to our customers and the communities we serve,” Rob McKinney, the CEO of New Pacific, commented on the rebranding decision, stated. “We value our employees, and this change will help us forge a stronger path forward.”
New Pacific Airlines said the rebranding will not disrupt its operations.
The Anchorage-based air carrier began operations on July 14, 2023. In late August 2023, the company denied reports that it would stop selling tickets and announced its fall 2023 schedule.
Originally envisioned as an airline designed to operate flights between the United States and Asia, with a layover in Anchorage, the all-Boeing 757 airline was compelled to revise its plans due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.