Deutsche Lufthansa AG
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- Deutsche Lufthansa AG
Lufthansa Aviation Center
60546 Frankfurt / Main
Ph: +49 69 696 28010
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Deutsche Lufthansa AG is a global aviation group which operates in five primary business segments: Passenger air transport, logistics, MRO, catering and IT services. Originally established in Jan-1926, Deutsche Lufthansa AG maintains its Corporate headquarters in Cologne, Germany while several departments are located in the Lufthansa Aviation Center at Frankfurt Airport. The company is listed on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange (FWB: LHA).
Although Lufthansa is involved in a range of industry segments, its core business is the provision of passenger air transport services, with the collective passenger airline group accounting for over two-thirds of the company's total revenue. These services are delivered through its numerous airline subsidiaries.
Deutsche Lufthansa AG holds majority stakes in a number of airlines including:
- Deutsche Lufthansa AG (100%, since 1954)
- Lufthansa CityLine GmbH (100%, since Mar-1992)
- Lufthansa Cargo AG (100%, since 1994)
- Air Dolomiti S.p.A. (100%, since Jul-2003)
- Eurowings Luftverkehrs AG (100%, since 1-Apr-2004)
- Swiss International Air Lines (Swiss Global Air Lines) (100%, since 1-Jul-2007)
- Edelweiss Air AG (100%, since Nov-2008)
- Germanwings GmbH (100% since 1-Jan-2009)
- Austrian Airlines AG (100%, since Sep-2009)
- Tyrolean Airways Tiroler Luftfahrt GmbH (merged with Austrian on 01-Apr-2015)
Deutsche Lufthansa AG also holds minority stakes in a number of airlines including:
- SunExpress (50%, since Apr-1990)
- Brussels Airlines (45%, since 15-Sep-2008)
- Aerologic GmbH (50%, since 19-Jun-2009)
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The Lufthansa Group is taking measures across its three full service brands to recalibrate in East Asia, its second largest long haul market by ASKs after North America - and with the highest growth potential. Hong Kong has been the group's de facto hub, historically, despite the lack of a Star Alliance partner. JVs are forming with Star partners Singapore Airlines and Air China, and the Hong Kong hub will diminish in importance. This will take time: JVs with Singapore Airlines and Air China are evolving slowly, with the Asian party being conservative compared with the more experienced Lufthansa.
The JVs will enable the Lufthansa Group to fill white spots (Malaysia, Indonesia) and improve offline connections; Australia is the group's largest offline market. Many of these opportunities are markets where Gulf airlines have already dominated the market. Lufthansa has an existing JV with ANA: 17% of East Asian seats are covered under a JV. After the Air China and SIA JVs come into force this figure will rise to 64% – still less than JV coverage in North America.
The Lufthansa Group narrowed its operating loss in the seasonally weak 1Q2016, in spite of a fall in revenue. A weak pricing environment was more than offset by a reduction in unit costs. This was principally thanks to lower fuel costs, but there was also a welcome fall in underlying ex fuel CASK at constant currency.
However, although Lufthansa Passenger reported higher profits than in 1Q2015, there was a decline for SWISS, Eurowings, Cargo, MRO and Catering. For LCC Eurowings, this was partly due to start-up costs in long haul and at Vienna, but it also reflected strong LCC competition in Germany. Lufthansa is still considering whether to add Brussels Airlines to its Eurowings operation. Austrian only improved its result because of a one-off gain and, moreover, it seems that the improvement in operating profit at the Group level compared with 1Q2015 was due to one-off items.
Lufthansa still expects to post a slightly higher adjusted EBIT result in 2016 than in 2015. Nevertheless, its 1Q2016 report demonstrates that, for all its restructuring progress, it is not achieving results that are consistent with the broader cyclically high margins of the global airline industry. Further CASK reduction remains the focus.
With its well-developed market economy, skilled labour force, and high standard of living, Austria is closely tied to other EU economies, especially Germany’s. The City of Vienna is one of Europe’s richest, and sitting as it does on the border of Eastern and Western Europe it has been able to benefit from trade between the two for many years. Its airport continues to do so today.
Only a decade ago it was underachieving for a wealthy capital city airport with high hub potential. But there have been considerable investments made in the infrastructure – which continue – and in addition Austrian Airlines has been absorbed into the Lufthansa Group, which has ultimately benefitted the airport. The airport now handles 22 million ppa, but growth rates recently have been low.
This report examines Vienna International Airport by way of several sets of metrics, looks at the airports that are rivals to it, at its construction activities and its changing ownership.
Among airports in Germany's Top 10 by passenger numbers, Berlin Schoenefeld was the fastest-growing in 2015. After declining between 2010 and 2013, its traffic then grew by 27% over two years. In the first three months of 2016 passenger numbers have grown by a further 43% year- on-year.
Berlin Schoenefeld is the smaller of the two airports in the Berlin system, yet its growth vastly outpaces the low single-digit rate of Berlin Tegel. Already an important base for easyJet in Germany, Schoenefeld has experienced recent rapid growth that has been mainly the result of expansion by Ryanair. Wizz Air has also entered Schoenefeld in 2016. Although easyJet's growth is much slower, it has announced that it will increase the number of aircraft based at the airport from nine to 10.
At the same time airberlin, based at neighbouring Tegel, is losing market share in the Berlin airport system. Although Germanwings is gaining share, this is merely substituting for its parent Lufthansa. By the situation at Schoenefeld, Berlin is a good illustration of how LCCs continue to take share from legacy airlines on intra-Europe routes.
Numerous media reports have speculated that Lufthansa may be on the acquisition trail. Group CEO Carsten Spohr told Bloomberg that consolidation in Europe is needed and that Lufthansa wants to be a part of it (Bloomberg, 22-Apr-2016), but did not identify specific targets. Moreover, Mr Spohr said the Group was concentrating on making sure that its LCC platform Eurowings worked first.
Interestingly, however, the reports have specified three possible acquisitions, in each case suggesting that they could be used as part of the Eurowings project. The three are SAS, Brussels Airlines and Condor Flugdienst (part of the Thomas Cook Group). In all three cases, there are historical and/or cultural reasons to suggest that some form of closer cooperation, including the possibility of acquisition (or partial acquisition), could feasibly be up for discussion.
Lufthansa's partnership with SAS goes back to the time before they were both involved in setting up the Star Alliance, while Lufthansa is already a minority shareholder in Brussels Airlines and a former shareholder in Condor. Of the three, only Condor could be a realistic candidate to become part of the Eurowings operation. None of these possible Lufthansa acquisitions would significantly change European airline market structure.
Reports that easyJet may be considering a bid for Monarch Airlines could herald a much anticipated wave of consolidation in Europe's LCC segment. The CEOs of both Lufthansa Group and Air France-KLM have indicated that they expect consolidation, while IAG has previously been active in this field, by acquiring Vueling in 2013.
This report compares the market structure of Europe's LCC segment with that of North America and considers the prospects for consolidation among European low cost airlines. As with the broader market, Europe's LCC segment is more fragmented than North America's. However, viewed as a market in its own right, it is more concentrated than the broader European market.
The two leading LCCs, Ryanair and easyJet, have almost half of all intra-Europe LCC seats between them (but Southwest has more than 60% of intra-North America LCC seats on its own). Notwithstanding speculation about easyJet and Monarch, whose Europe seat share is only 2%, any meaningful LCC consolidation in Europe seems more likely to involve second-tier LCCs. This may include the LCC subsidiaries of the legacy groups, although none of the big three appear ready to lead the process currently.