Debt and coronavirus push Hertz into bankruptcy protection

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(AP) – Hertz has filed for bankruptcy protection, unable to withstand the coronavirus pandemic that has crippled global travel and with it, the heavily indebted 102-year-old car rental company’s business.

The Florida-based company’s lenders were unwilling to grant it another extension on its auto lease debt payments past a Friday deadline, triggering the filing.

By the end of March, Hertz had $18.7 billion in debt with only $1 billion of available cash.

Starting in mid-March, the company lost all revenue when travel nearly shut down due to the novel coronavirus.

Hertz also has been plagued by management upheaval, naming its fourth CEO in six years on May 18.

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