Lufthansa Group expects continued strong demand and double-digit capacity growth this year to help it match the €2.7 billion ($2.9 billion) operating profit it posted for 2023.

A 15% increase in revenue to €35.4 billion helped Lufthansa Group drive a strong jump in adjusted EBIT from €1.5 billion to €2.7 billion in 2023.  Group net profit more than doubled to €1.7 billion over the same period.

lh group-c-Lufthansa Group

Source: Lufthansa

Notably it confirms that 2023 marks the first time that all of its airline units have delivered a profit. Lufthansa and Swiss International Air Lines accounted for the bulk of the just over €2 billion in passenger airline profits for the year. Lufthansa German Airlines unit had an adjusted EBIT of €854 million and Swiss of €809 million.

Lufthansa was loss-making in 2022, as were Brussels Airlines and Eurowings. Brussels Airlines though made a €53 million profit and Eurowings recorded an adjusted EBIT of €205 million. Austrian Airlines made a profit of €127 million.

Lufthansa airline units revenue and operating profits: 2023
 2023 revenue 2022 revenue2023 op profit2022 op profit2023 op margin
 Source: Lufthansa, Operating profit is adjusted EBIT
Lufthansa €16,168m €13,173m €854m (€466m) 5.3%
Swiss International Air Lines €5,905m €4,805m €809m €476m 13.7%
Eurowings €2,592m €505m €205m (€197m) 7.9%
Austrian Airlines €2,346m €1,871m €127m €3m 5.3%
Brussels Airlines €1,537m €1,857m €53m (€74m) 3.4%
Group total €35,422m €30,895m €2,682m €1,520m 7.6%

”The Lufthansa Group has regained its financial strength,” says Lufthansa Group chief executive Carsten Spohr. ”With [our employees’] above-average commitment, they made 2023 one of the three best years in Lufthansa Group’s history.”

Group passenger numbers jumped by a fifth to 123 million during 2023 as the airline continued to restore capacity after the pandemic. However, group capacity was still only at 84% of pre-pandemic levels, with only Eurowings back to 2019 levels, meaning it expects more growth this year. The group aims to take in 30 new aircraft this year, including 20 long-haul jets, and raise capacity 12% to around 94% of 2019 levels.

”Despite the increase in capacity, the load factors booked for the next three months are above last year’s level,” the group says, in issuing its initial outlook for the year to come. 

While it sees the impact of strike action and weaker cargo demand versus the same period last year meaning its first quarter operating losses will be higher than in 2023, it expects results to be particularly strong during the peak second and third quarters.

”The unit revenues of the passenger airlines are expected to be stable or only slightly below the previous year level, while unit costs are expected to remain stable. Adjusted EBIT for the passenger airlines is therefore expected to be on par with the previous year, as is the operating result in the logistics and MRO segments,” it says.

As a result it sees operating result and adjusted EBIT margin matching the €2.7 billion and 7.6% respectively recorded in 2023. “The group remains committed to its goal of generating a sustainable adjusted EBIT margin of at least 8%,” it says.