Lufthansa Cargo sees decline in volumes and earnings in 2015

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Lufthansa Cargo saw a 2.3 per cent decline in the amount of cargo it carried in 2015 and EBIT (earnings before interest and taxes) fell a massive 97.6 per cent, it has revealed at its annual results in Berlin today.

The German airline handled 1.63 million tonnes last year, down on the 1.66 million in 2014, while the load factor was 66.3 percentage points, a 3.4 per cent drop on the 69.7 percentage points the previous year.

Offered freight tonne kilometres rose 2.1 per cent in 2015, to 12.6 billion, up on the 12.3 billion in 2014, while sold freight tonne kilometres were down 2.9 per cent to 8.3 billion from 8.6 billion in 2014.

Revenue was 2.3 billion euros, a 3.3 per cent fall on the 2.4 billion euros in 2-14, while the EBIT was three million, a massive 97.6 per cent fall on the 122.9 million euros in 2014.

Despite this, Lufthansa Cargo says it is implementing a comprehensive range of measures to counter the decline in the 2015 annual results.

Besides an ambitious cost-cutting programme, the airline has announced further product innovations and says it is pressing ahead with initiatives from the Lufthansa Cargo 2020 future programme, including close partnerships with other airlines.

Chairman and chief executive officer, Peter Gerber says: “We will still be operating in an extremely challenging market environment in the years ahead. But we have a clear strategy that has been set up to facilitate sustainable and profitable growth again. With innovative products, superb service and competitive cost structures, we will make the most of the advantages offered by our Frankfurt base.”

Lufthansa Cargo says after a strong first quarter, demand on the global air cargo markets weakened steadily and on top of this there was turbulence in the Chinese market and a very strong US dollar, which affected export-driven industries in the US in particular.

The numerous strikes of the Vereinigung Cockpit (VC) pilots’ union and Unabhängige Flugbegleiterorganisation (UFO) cabin attendants’ union led to further reductions in transported cargo volumes and revenues.

Gerber says the company will stick with 2020 future strategy in spite of the decline in profits: “We have set the right course, and the first plants of Lufthansa Cargo 2020 are starting to bear fruit.

“With our new Boeing 777Fs, we are flying more efficiently and saving more fuel than ever before in our company’s history.

“The cooperation with ANA has gotten off to a superb start and we will be working very closely with another strong airline, United Airlines, in the future. We are also marketing the cargo capacities of Eurowings long-haul flights, which makes our network even more appealing.”