LATAM Airlines loses $890 million due to coronavirus restrictions By Reuters

LATAM Airlines loses $890 million due to coronavirus restrictions By


© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Passengers wait to check in for their flights at the departure area of Latam airlines inside of the Commodore Arturo Merino Benitez International Airport in Santiago

By Fabian Cambero

SANTIAGO (Reuters) – LATAM Airlines (OTC:), South America’s largest carrier, on Tuesday reported a net loss of $890 million for the second quarter, hit by the coronavirus pandemic that drove the company into a Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing in May.

The carrier posted a 75% drop in revenue between April and June due to widespread travel restrictions around Latin America.

“COVID-19 has had a very significant impact, which is reflected in the company’s numbers,” LATAM CFO Ramiro Alfonsin told journalists.

LATAM and its rivals are struggling to preserve cash while operating just a small fraction of their usual flights. The carrier has laid off thousands of employees and said it will transform itself into a smaller company for years to come.

LATAM’s Chapter 11 filing has allowed it to raise more than $1.3 billion in cash from investors, although it still needs the approval from a bankruptcy judge before it can access the money.

Alfonsin said the airline had operated during the quarter at 6% of its normal capacity and that demand in Brazil, its largest market, was showing some signs of recovery.

He added LATAM ended the quarter with a total cash position of $1.4 billion.

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