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Turnaround year for Cargolux

LUXEMBOURG: March 23, 2016. Reflecting a bad year for air cargo, Cargolux has reported a 13.6 percent drop in revenue to US$1.85 billion in 2015. However the airline managed to increase its EBITDAR 33.7 percent to US$334 million and produce a net profit of US$49 million – compared to just US$3 million in 2014.

The company said it outperformed not only the market but also other European competitors "who, in some cases, retired freighters or reduced their air cargo activities". As a result it claims a market share of 3.8 percent.

CV ZhengzhouDuring the year Cargolux increased freight tonne-kilometers (FTKs) by 8.7 percent; carried 889,652 tonnes of freight, a rise of 7.4 percent over 2014; and produced an average load factor of 65.9 percent.

By the end of 2015 the airline had increased flights to Zhengzhou to 13 a week and had carried over 65,000 tons of freight to and from its China hub. Earlier this year, the company announced it would invest US$77 million in a new Chinese cargo airline to begin services from Zhengzhou to points within Asia and across the Pacific in 2017.

After 18 months of often tense negotiations, last December the airline reached a three-year work agreement with its Luxembourg-based staff. Dirk Reich, Cargolux CEO commented: "I want to explicitly thank everyone in the Cargolux family for their continued dedication and hard work. The long discussions with our social partners have helped us to come out a stronger company with a better comprehension of each other's needs and concerns. This understanding, this passion for our work, keeps Cargolux at the top of the game and it is due to the little things that every single one of our staff has contributed."

After 45 years of operation, the airline now flies 13 B747-8s and 13 B747-400 freighters to 90 destinations worldwide, of which 70 are scheduled points. Maintaining 85 offices in 50 countries, the company's net debt rose 1.8 percent in 2015 to reach just over US$1.4 billion.

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