Air, Freight News

Electric performance for Lufthansa AWBs

[ March 20, 2019   //   ]

Lufthansa Cargo has achieved 74% penetration for electronic air waybills (eAWBs), the carrier announced at its annual results press conference on 18 March. The figure had risen from virtually nothing less than seven years ago, and was set to go on rising further, with 80% penetration expected in 2019.

A new charge for paper AWBs had boosted take-up of the electronic version, Lufthansa added.

Lufthansa also plans to introduce a fully-automated spot pricing system later in the year, which would be the first in the market while pre-checking of freight, especially dangerous goods would also be modernised. Indeed, the carrier’s entire “IT backbone” would be completely renewed.

Lufthansa increased its earnings by €5 million in 2018 to €268m, said executive board chairman and chief executive Peter Gerber. He said the result had been achieved through an improvement in yields, which were up 7%. Revenue was up 8% but volume by only 1%.

The challenge for 2019 will be to repeat 2018’s strong performance, warned Gerber. The US/China trade dispute, the UK’s exit from the EU and potential political instability in the US were all clouding the short-term outlook. Moreover, there were signs, he said, that the boom in airfreight of the past two years was coming to an end at the close of 2018.

Lufthansa has however added much, new capacity including two new 777, the addition of Brussels Airlines bellyhold capacity and new Airbus A350s that were boosting services based on Munich.

Plans to completely demolish the Lufthansa cargo centre in Frankfurt had been scaled back in favour of a comprehensive refurbishment programme.