The last few months have seen Luxembourg-based all-cargo airline Cargolux almost constantly in the news, and most of the news has been negative. Internal struggles, resignations of high-level executives, speculation that the dual-hub strategy required by new shareholder HNCA will be a failure…
But behind the headlines is a real airline that reported a much-improved performance in 2013, with a net profit of US$8.4 million in 2013, up from a loss of $35.1 million in 2012 (and a loss of $18.3 million in 2011). Revenue for the year was up 14.4% to $1.99 billion, driven by increasing demand. Cargo traffic for the year was up 19.2% to 5.72 billion RTKs, while cargo volume rose 16.7% to 754,000 tonnes.
Cargolux currently operates an 17-unit freighter fleet, made up of nine 747-8Fs and eight 747-400Fs, and has four more 747-8Fs on firm order with Boeing. The carrier also leases two 747-400BCFs and one 747-400ERF on a power-by-the-hour basis, using them when additional capacity is required. Cargolux has always had one of the highest utilization rates in the industry, and 2013 was no different. Average utilization was 15:58 hours per day for the 747-8Fs and 14:04 hours for the 747-400Fs. The 747-400BCFs were only used when additional capacity was needed, and averaged 7:35 hours.
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