MIAMI – Due to its current financial status, AeroMexico (AM) looks to a government support line to obtain more liquidity as it evaluates aircraft sales and leasebacks.
Days ago, the carrier announced a US$102m loss during the first quarter of the year as its passenger volume dropped to 17.6% in comparison with the same period last year, the plunge in losses was about 14%, reaching MEX$14,074.
Government’s liquidity line
Even though AM said it currently has US$563m in cash, in the past two years it has experienced a net loss in almost all its year quarters, according to its financial reports. Thus, the airline’s CEO, Andrés Conesa, announced that the airline was in conversations with the Mexican government.
According to El Universal, Conesa explained that the talks were aimed at allowing the carrier to pay for jet fuel in the long term, to obtain credit lines from the Development Bank (BD), and to negotiate the payment of certain airport fees at Mexico City International Airport (MEX), among others.
However, this move should not be considered as a request for a bailout as it relies more on a state support line, added Conesa. While AM mitigated risks and protected the company’s cash flow at the start of the pandemic crisis, it now tries to obtain greater liquidity in the face of uncertainty.
Future actions regarding AM’s fleet and financial agencies
The airline is evaluating other initiatives to reduce over 50% of fixed costs, which include definitive and temporary exit of part of its aircraft, and financing from European credit agencies and the US Export-Import Bank (EXIM).
In addition, when it comes to the carrier’s fleet, four Boeing 737-800 and two Boeing 737-700 were returned and six Boeing 737 MAX were parked, thus coming to a total of 25 planes at the end of Q1, according to its report.
AeroMexico’s liquidity plan would also be nourished by salary contributions over 50% in leave without pay program, a crew rotation schedule, and negotiations with airport groups, aircraft suppliers and lessors.
Finally, AM expects to pass Q2 with a good status by implementing these measures. In Q3, the carrier will start a progressive recovery, which would involve further compensation form Boeing, said AM CFO, Ricardo Sánchez, and Commercial VP, Nicolás Ferri.
Waiting to reach US$400m in additional liquidity in the coming months, Conesa said in a statement that the company’s current position is a strong one, and probably the strongest in the Mexican market.
The Mexican carrier has launched cargo flights operated by 16% of its Boeing Dreamliner fleet as it cut capacity and grounded the majority of its fleet during the months of March and April.