Delta Air Lines Seeks $3 Billion in Bonds, Loan on Shutdown

(Bloomberg) -- Delta Air Lines Inc. is seeking to raise $3 billion from loans and bonds as it grapples with a global travel shutdown caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

The company is offering five-year bonds to investors at a yield of about 7%, according to people familiar with the matter. Delta is also seeking a term loan under the plan, and the financing would be evenly split between the two, the company said late Wednesday.

The debt will be secured by collateral including domestic slots at New York airports and those at Heathrow in London as well as other European and Latin American routes.

Delta’s borrowing efforts come after United Airlines Holdings Inc. sold more than $1 billion in stock at $26.50 a share -- a historically low price and the first such offering by a major U.S. airline during the worst crisis in the industry’s history. Both companies had been in talks with banks on new debt issuance to bolster liquidity and supplement cash to be raised from government loans, Bloomberg News previously reported.

Delta, which is already stepping up cost cutting efforts, obtained a $2.6 billion one-year loan from JPMorgan Chase & Co last month and has drawn $3 billion under its existing credit lines.

Barclays Plc is leading the new term loan, which matures in 2023. JPMorgan is leading the junk bond offering, which is expected to price on April 28, the same day as commitments are due on the loan.

Delta’s latest debt will help boost liquidity, after the company reported on Wednesday that first-quarter sales tumbled 18% to $8.59 billion and it posted an adjusted loss of 51 cents a share for the period compared with earnings of 96 cents a share a year earlier. The company also vowed to cut its daily cash burn in half as it seeks to scale back operations.

Chief Financial Officer Paul Jacobson said on an earnings call that the airline’s options included borrowing against $13.5 billion in unencumbered assets, or selling planes and leasing them back from the buyers. Delta has also applied for $4.6 billion in U.S. government loans which if tapped, would complement the $5.4 billion in emergency U.S. payroll support the company has already lined up.

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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