EasyJet Secures New Five-Year $1.87 Billion Loan with U.K. Guarantee

British airline easyJet boosted its liquidity through a new five-year loan facility of $1.87 billion, backed by a partial guarantee from Britain, helping to ease concerns about its finances as the pandemic continues to stop travel, Reuters reported. Like most European airlines, cash-strapped easyJet had been hoping to be gearing up for a recovery this spring, but with Britain, its biggest market, back in lockdown, flying is expected to stay at minimal levels for several more months. EasyJet said that the new loan facility improved its debt maturity profile and it planned to repay and cancel the full drawn revolving credit facility of $500 million and term loans of about 400 million pounds ($540 million) in the first quarter. To survive the pandemic so far, easyJet has axed 4,500 staff, tapped shareholders for cash, and sold dozens of its aircraft, and it did not rule out further action in its statement on Monday. The new $1.87 billion loan was underwritten by a syndicate of banks and backed by guarantees provided by a scheme from Britain’s UK Export Finance, which includes some restrictions around future dividend payments. Read more.