Hertz, a global car rental company that’s over 100 years old, filed for bankruptcy protection on Friday, May 22, ostensibly due to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. It’s the latest large-scale company that the coronavirus has taken down in recent weeks.
The Wall Street Journal was the first to report that the American company had debts amounting to $19 billion and nearly 700,000 vehicles all over the world that were barely in use because of the pandemic. The company has been losing money for years as it faced competition from ride-hailing businesses like Uber and Lyft as well as from other car-rental agencies like Avis. In 2019, it reported losses amounting to $58 million.
In an SEC filing in April, Hertz announced that it had laid off approximately 10,000 employees. Another filing also announced the resignation of its CEO, Kathryn Marinello, last week.
Hertz was founded in Chicago, Illinois, in 1918. As of March 2019, it had 9,700 corporate and franchise locations in 150 countries worldwide, including the Philippines.
Hertz Philippines (Exclusive Cars International Holdings Inc.) has issued a statement acknowledging Hertz USA’s bankruptcy filing, and said its operations in the country will not be affected.
“We are business as usual,” it said.
NOTE: This story originally appeared on Esquiremag.ph. Minor edits have been made.