Head of Lufthansa Cargo becomes CEO

Dorothea von Boxberg

The head of Lufthansa Cargo is moving to the subsidiary Brussels Airlines.

(Photo: Lufthansa)

Frankfurt Dorothea von Boxberg will move to the Lufthansa subsidiary Brussels Airlines as CEO on April 15. The post became vacant after the previous Brussels boss, Peter Gerber, announced his move to Lufthansa rival Condor. The 47-year-old could therefore recommend himself for a position on the Lufthansa Executive Board.

One thing is certain: von Boxberg has a difficult task ahead of him. Brussels Airlines faces stiff competition from low-cost carriers. The Lufthansa offshoot was still in the red in the past financial year and has long been considered a problem child of the Lufthansa Group. Before von Boxberg, the current Lufthansa board member Christina Foerster and Gerber had failed to lead Brussels into the black.

Von Boxberg is giving up an attractive job for her new position. Under her leadership, Lufthansa Cargo has smashed from record to record over the past two years. The manager helped Europe’s largest airline group emerge from the crisis faster and better than expected.

The former consultant had a lot of tailwind. Because traditional supply chains were disrupted during the pandemic, aviation boomed. But the success of LH Cargo is also credited to the manager. It introduced flexible prices and expanded the cargo business to include medium-haul routes with Airbus A321s converted into freighters. In her future job things are likely to be less creative. Experience has shown that the CEOs of Lufthansa’s airline subsidiaries have limited room for manoeuvre.

“I am very pleased that Dorothea von Boxberg, an accomplished and experienced airline manager from our own ranks, is taking over the management position at Brussels Airlines,” said Lufthansa board member Foerster, who is also the head of the Brussels supervisory board. After Gerber’s release, Foerster temporarily took over the management of Brussels himself.

A decision on the successor at the helm of Lufthansa Cargo should be made quickly. The manager will not have an easy job. The air freight boom is over and freight rates are falling. It will be difficult to top the record results of the past few years.

Aviation is traditionally very male-dominated. Lufthansa is now making a positive impression here. Since March 2022, Annette Mann has been a second woman at the head of a Lufthansa subsidiary, namely the Austrian AUA. Heike Birlenbach, on the other hand, was head of LH Italia several years ago, which, however, ceased operations after a very short time.

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