On Wednesday 24 April 2024, Cargolux held a press conference at their premises in Sandweiler to present their 2023 results.

Tom Weisgerber, Chairman of Cargolux, welcomed everyone and described the 2023 results as "satisfying" following the record year in 2022. He also briefly mentioned diversification (in May, they will divest into cargo handling) and a few months ago they announced their new fire-fighting business unit. He also addressed sustainability and access to sustainable aviation fuel which will be required in the future.

Richard Forson, CEO, stated that 2023 was a year of returning to normal. Globally, the world cargo market fell by 2.2% (3.8% against 2019); overall, air cargo industry capacity returned to 2019 levels. Although 2023 was "somewhat muted", the fourth quarter saw an exponential increase in cross-border e-Commerce which now accounts for 9% of international air trade, compared to 6% in 2022.

In 2023, Cargolux generated a net profit of $286 million (after tax), which he described as their best result post-Covid. He said that normalcy has returned to the air cargo market.

On investments, Cargolux established Luxcargo Handling SA (a 100% subsidiary of Cargolux) which acquired the business of LuxairCargo from Luxair and will undertake cargo handling for Cargolux and third parties.

Also, Cargolux established a new business unit, aerial firefighting (Aquarius) and is currently training and recruiting pilots to "ensure the proper mix of expertise". Richard Forson revealed that their initial consortium tender (revealed at their press conference in January) had not been successful; however, he stated that it is likely that due to increased fires in Greece, etc, that more ad hoc tenders will be announced.

On the topic of sustainable fuels, last year Cargolux entered a partnership with Norsk e-Fuel AS for the development of an innovative e-SAF production plant in Mosjoen in Norway (he confirmed that currently e-SAF fuels cost three times as much as kerosene); it also has an equity investment in a consortium for the production of ethanol in the South of France (NACRE). The aim is to get Cargolux to a net Carbon Zero status by 2050.

Maxim Straus, CFO, explained that while the 2023 results were down on 2022 (a historical high for Cargolux), they are still higher than pre-Covid figures. For example, the load factor was down 3.9% on 2022. Total revenues for 2022 were $5,105 million, and $2,998 million in 2023; however, the net profits reduced from $1,579 million in 2022 (31.1% of revenue) to $286 million in 2023 (9.6% of revenue).

On personnel numbers, Cargolux employs roughly the same as in 2022 (2,540 in 2023), with the company aiming to increase numbers to 3,780 in 2024 (1,200 will be transferring from LuxairCargo; there are also 200 contractors involved in cargo operations).

On a question concerning investments in aircraft, Richard Forson explained that no new aircraft have been ordered apart from the ten that are in the pipeline. He also explained that they are in communication with Boeing concerning recent technical issues with their fleet; he added that they are also exploring how to expend the life of their existing Boeing 747 fleet by maintenance, etc.

In answer to a question, Tom Weisegerben confirmed that $120 million will be paid to shareholders in dividends based on the company's 2023 results.

On the company's significant cash reserves, Richard Forson explained that the air cargo business is notoriously volatile and the management is concerned about the long-term of the company. He added that negotiations with the unions resulted in "significant profit-sharing".

The war in Ukraine has also resulted in higher costs for Cargolux when flying to/from Asia; however, the political situation in the Red Sea has impacted primarily sea cargo.