Southwest makes bid to buy Frontier Airlines

DALLAS (AP) - Southwest Airlines is seeking to trump a rival bid and acquire Frontier Airlines.

Denver-based Frontier is operating under bankruptcy protection.

A court had already approved the sale of Frontier Airlines Holdings to the parent of Republic Airways for $108.8 million, but that deal can be nixed if a better offer comes along.

Dallas-based Southwest today announced it's submitted a nonbinding bid of $113.6 million.

Southwest hopes that making the bid will allow it to talk with Frontier and get information to help shape its final proposal.

Southwest said it faces an Aug. 10 deadline for submitting a binding bid. If there is more than one qualified bidder, an auction will be held the following day.

Southwest recently went back into the Denver market, where it competes against Frontier and United Airlines.