Norwegian says it is willing to sell its take off and landing slots at Gatwick to delay repayment of bonds worth nearly $400 million in an effort to ease its cash crisis.
The budget carrier is requesting extensions on two bonds, the first due in December and the second next August, and is willing to put up its slots at Gatwick as collateral.
Norwegian says the move is necessary to “ensure successful operations” and “adequate liquidity headroom” ahead of what is expected to be another tough winter.
It wants to push the payments back to November 2021 and February 2022 respectively.
Norwegian says the slots are worth in excess of the nominal $380 million value of the bonds.
“These are important operational rights for the Norwegian Group, facilitating the feeding of passengers between our European short-haul network and intercontinental long-haul network - an important part of Norwegian’s profitability strategy going forward,” said Norwegian, adding the value of its slots at Gatwick was underlined by “previous transactions in the market”.
Norwegian is currently seeking to transition the business from growth to profitability and cash generation.
It says operational performance “continues to improve” since its second-quarter report in mid-July, adding the airline is on course to post earnings before interest, tax, depreciation, amortisation and restructuring costs of between NOK 6 billion (£550 million) and NOK 7 billion (£640 million).