Latin America’s Largest Airline Plans Return to US Capital Markets After Restructuring

Latin America’s largest airline is planning a return to US capital markets after cutting nearly $4 billion of debt during a years-long restructuring, Bloomberg News reported. Latam Airlines Group SA will seek to re-list its American depositary receipts on the New York Stock Exchange this year after they were suspended during the bankruptcy, Chief Financial Officer Ramiro Alfonsín said in a video interview. It also expects to return to international bond markets next year, he said. The Santiago-based carrier, which emerged from chapter 11 in November, is trying to reduce debt-to-earnings ratios even as it adds routes to its network. “We have a good opportunity for the market to recognize and better understand the new Latam,” Alfonsín said. “In 2024, it’s likely we’ll start to address the question of refinancing.” The company, which operates 310 aircraft and has the largest share of at least four South American markets, was one of three big Latin American carriers to restructure in US bankruptcy courts when the Covid-19 pandemic crippled air travel in 2020. The company has about $6.5 billion in debt, including more than $1 billion in secured notes due in 2027 and 2029 that were issued as private placements during the restructuring. Read more.