Lufthansa splashes out €14 billion on new fleet
Lufthansa said on Thursday it had placed orders for 59 new fuel-efficient long-haul aircraft worth €14 billion.
Germany’s biggest airline said in a statement it has ordered 34 new Boeing 777-9X jets and 25 Airbus A350-900 to renew its fleet. Delivery is scheduled from 2016, the statement said.
The order - described by Lufthansa as the single largest investment ever made by a private investor in Germany - will build a fleet of more fuel-efficient aircraft to combat high oil prices.
"With these aircraft, we make a quantum leap in terms of efficiency," chief executive Christoph Franz told a news conference.
The new aeroplanes would primarily serve to replace existing aircraft at Lufthansa, with older Boeing 747-400s and Airbus A340-300s to be phased out by 2025, he explained.
"This investment will safeguard about 13,000 jobs at Lufthansa alone as well as thousands of jobs at our partners in aviation and other suppliers," Franz said.
Lufthansa currently operates a long-haul fleet of around 107 aircraft, among them 10 ultra-modern Airbus A380s and nine Boeing 747-8s as well as the Airbus A330-300.
The fleet also includes Airbus A340s and Boeing 747-400s. "The aim is to reduce the number of different models and fleet complexity and also replace existing aircraft with state-of-the-art aeroplanes," Franz said.
Following an order already placed in March of this year, Lufthansa currently has a total of 295 brand-new aircraft on order with a list value of €36 billion which are expected to be delivered by 2025.
On the Frankfurt stock exchange, Lufthansa shares gained 1.37 percent following the announcement, slightly outperforming the market with the blue-chip DAX index up 1.17 percent.