Hertz on track to exit bankruptcy protection this month

Hertz will likely emerge from Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection by the end of the month after a bankruptcy court confirmed the reorganization plan for the beleaguered car rental company.

Hertz Global Holdings Inc., which filed for bankruptcy protection in May 2020, said today that its plan will eraser more than $5 billion in debt and provide more than $2.2 billion in liquidity. Creditors will be paid in full and existing shareholders will receive more than $1 billion in value.

Hertz was among the first major corporations to be felled by the pandemic last year as infections surged and shut down travel on a global scale for both companies and vacationers.

It announced in March that it might sell a controlling stake in the company to two investment firms for $4.2 billion. Knighthead Capital Management and Certares Opportunities would have the chance to buy the entire reorganized car rental company, but no less than a majority of its shares. The proposed investment, combined with a new $1 billion first-lien financing, a new $1.5 billion revolving credit facility, and a new asset-backed securitization facility to finance its U.S. vehicle fleet, was eyed as a way to provide the funding needed for the company to complete its restructuring.

Hertz’s emergency from bankruptcy protection comes at a time when Americans are getting vaccinated for COVID-19 and eager to start traveling again. Demand for car rentals is surging, and with limited supply, prices are skyrocketing.

The Florida company runs the Hertz, Dollar and Thrifty vehicle rental brands throughout North America, Europe, the Caribbean, Latin America, Africa, the Middle East, Asia, Australia and New Zealand.