Companies issue bonds to raise capital. There are many motivations to raise capital, but here are a few: desire to acquire another company, desire to purchase some new property/plant/equipment, desire to perform some research and development, desire to recapitalize the business to pay the owners a dividend, etc....
I would rather buy a bond at a discount because that means I'd be buying it for less than face value (thus, when it expired I'd receive more money back than I paid of the bond in the first place).
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