Lufthansa Group has reduced the planned growth rate for its low-cost carrier subsidiary Eurowings (EW, Düsseldorf Int'l) to zero for 2019, Group Chief Financial Officer Ulrik Svensson said during the quarterly earnings call.
"Full year capacity growth at the Network Airlines [i.e. Lufthansa, Austrian Airlines, and Brussels Airlines] will be around 4%. At Eurowings, we even decided to cut our growth plans to zero, also considering ongoing capacity constraints in the European aviation systems," Svensson said.
The LCC is still struggling to break even. In the first quarter of 2019, Eurowings posted an adjusted EBIT loss of EUR257 million euros (USD287.8 million). The group is not revealing the exact figures for the LCC's short- and long-haul businesses but Svensson admitted that the long-haul operation is particularly challenging.
"Performance is not where we wanted to be. We are confident that the shift of major parts of Eurowings long-haul business to Frankfurt Int'l and Munich in autumn will improve performance, especially as we expect loads to benefit from the Lufthansa feeder traffic in our two German hubs," Svensson added.
The group still plans to resume Eurowings' growth in the future and estimates that it will be around 3% per annum in the group's home markets.