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Trip.com seeking US$1.2b loan in funding test amid outbreak

[HONG KONG] Trip.com Group Ltd, China's biggest online travel service provider, is seeking to raise a US$1.2 billion loan in a test of investor risk appetite as the leisure industry reels from the coronavirus outbreak.

The company is in talks with international and Chinese lenders for the facility, according to people familiar with the matter. The loan is for refinancing and working capital, said the people who are not authorised to speak publicly and asked not to be identified. Trip.com declined to comment in an emailed statement.

The loan comes amid challenges to its business following the new coronavirus that has claimed over 1,300 lives. More than 50 countries or territories have imposed travel restrictions and tightened visa requirements to contain the spread of the disease, according to the International Air Transport Association.

Trip.com's last loan was in July 2019 when it signed a US$2 billion three-year facility, according to Bloomberg-compiled data.

BLOOMBERG