(Bloomberg) -- A group of banks led by Goldman Sachs Group Inc. may launch a $5 billion debt offering for United Airlines Holdings Inc. as soon as Monday, according to people with knowledge of the matter.
Goldman Sachs has started discussions with investors to gauge their level of interest, said the people, who asked not to be named because the talks are private. Early unofficial pricing discussions for a bond that could have a maturity of seven or eight years are for a yield of about 7%, the people said.
United is tapping its frequent-flyer program for the deal, the company’s biggest debt sale since the pandemic. The offering may also include leveraged loans and the debt could have one investment-grade rating, Bloomberg previously reported. Talks on the terms of the offering are preliminary and could change, the people said.
Representatives for Goldman Sachs and United declined to comment.
Goldman, Barclays Plc and Morgan Stanley committed to provide the financing to United in exchange for a claim on MileagePlus, the loyalty program the airline established in 1981, according to a company presentation. Since the banks have underwritten the debt, they will be eager to begin marketing and offload it to investors soon, according to the people.
Read more: United’s banks map debt plan that shields frequent-flyer program
United nixed an effort to sell $2.25 billion of junk bonds last month because it wasn’t satisfied with the terms. Some investors balked at the aging fleet of jetliners pledged as collateral.
Since then, companies rushing to shore up cash during the Covid-19 pandemic are fueling the most active June ever in the U.S. junk-bond market. Borrowers have raised about $45.5 billion, making it the busiest month since $46.4 billion was sold in September 2013, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
American Airlines Group Inc. is looking at raising around $2 billion from a junk bond offering that may emerge as soon as next week, according to other people with knowledge of the matter.
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