Delta Air Lines is offering to buy back up to $1bn of its high yield bonds issued last year to tide over the pandemic restrictions. The tender offer which will help the airline trim the swelling debt on its balance sheet is valid on the following three bonds issued between April and September 2020.
- $3.5bn 7% 2025s yielding 2.04% issued on April 24, 2020
- $1.25bn 7.375% 2026s yielding 3.09% issued on June 12, 2020
- $2.5bn 4.5% 2025s, issued in September 2020. These notes were secured against the company’s SkyMiles rewards program
The company’s net debt increased to $18.3bn in Jun 2021 from $7.9bn in Dec 2019 after the company borrowed from the markets to support its cash burn of ~$1.5bn/quarter since the onset of the pandemic. However, the vaccination has improved travel forecasts. The airline had reported a net income of $652mn in the quarter ending June, its first profit since 2019. The improved outlook and the upbeat results have encouraged the company to trim its balance sheet liabilities. Delta’s interim CFO said during the earnings call that, “With improving financial performance and a strong liquidity position, we’re using cash to reduce leverage and non-operating expense while rebuilding unencumbered assets and managing our debt maturity profile.”