New Partners

Lufthansa’s Dance with the Devil

View of a Lufthansa and an Air China plane at the newly-built A380 hangar, in Beijing, March 19, 2008. Asias largest aircraft maintenance hangar, the A380 hanger of the Aircraft Maintenance and Engineering Corporation (Ameco Beijing), was completed in Beijing on March 18. It will formally be put into use in May this year. Maintenance targets of A380 hanger include all Boeing series and Airbus series aircraft; and 11,500 aircraft can be maintained annually. The A380 hangar is located north of Beijing Capital Airports 3rd terminal, and consists of a maintenance hall and annexed building. The total construction covers an area of 70,437 square meters. Foto: Imaginechina +++(c) dpa - Report+++ [ Rechtehinweis: (c) dpa - Report ]
View of a Lufthansa and Air China plane at Asia's largest aircraft maintenance hangar in Beijing.
  • Why it matters

    Why it matters

    Lufthansa must do something as it continues to lose market share to low-cost competitors and Gulf airlines like Emirates.

  • Facts


    • An expected collaboration with Air Berlin would see the airline disappear as a competitor in Cologne, Hamburg, Munich and Stuttgart.
    • By allying with Air China, Lufthansa will be the only foreign airline able to offer routes with transfers to many Chinese destinations.
    • Both Air Berlin and Air China have a less customer-friendly approach than Lufthansa.
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Lately, it hasn’t taken much to rattle Lufthansa chief executive Carsten Spohr. You need only ask him when Eurowings, the airline’s low-cost carrier, will get the new partner he’s been promising, or why Lufthansa is letting powerful competitors, such as Gulf carrier Emirates, snatch away business.

Until now, Mr. Spohr has answered evasively. But this week Mr. Spohr intends to sign a joint venture contract with state-owned Air China after years of negotiating. And Lufthansa’s supervisory board is slated to approve another collaboration with Air Berlin the week after.

The German rival would see 40 of its aircraft get more space in Cologne, Hamburg, Munich and Stuttgart. In addition, their cabin crews would fly under the Eurowings logo. At the moment, neither company is commenting publicly.

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