Delta helped Brazil's Gol refinance $300 million loan, memo shows

FILE PHOTO: Delta Air Lines passenger planes are seen parked due to flight reductions made to slow the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19), at Birmingham-Shuttlesworth International Airport in Birmingham, Alabama, U.S. March 25, 2020. REUTERS/Elijah Nouvelage/File Photo

CHICAGO (Reuters) - Delta Air Lines DAL.N helped its former Brazilian partner Gol Linhas Aereas Inteligentes GOLL4.SA to refinance a $300 million loan that was due on Monday and which the U.S. carrier had guaranteed, according to an internal memo seen by Reuters.

Delta confirmed the memo was sent to employees on Wednesday but declined to provide additional details.

Gol said on Tuesday it had paid the $300 million debt, according to a securities filing, without providing details.

The 2015 loan had included a guarantee from Delta which helped Gol get a better interest rate.

“As part of the refinancing, Delta worked with Gol to replace the existing loan guarantee with a smaller loan secured with incremental collateral,” Delta said in the memo.

It said the deal reduces its own financial exposure and provides additional security, while providing Gol more time to address its obligations during the coronavirus pandemic, which has decimated air travel across the globe.

Delta and Gol ended their partnership earlier this year when the U.S. airline launched a joint venture with Chile-based LATAM LTM.SN, a deal it said in the memo will be crucial to rebuilding its network and restoring growth in the region when the travel recovery begins.

Reuters reported last week that Delta was on the hook for the Gol loan.

Reporting by Tracy Rucinski; Editing by Chris Reese