Bahn boss speaks of the “greatest operating loss” in the company’s history

The corona crisis hits the railway company hard. In an internal letter, CEO Lutz now writes of monthly losses “in the three-digit million range”.

Richard Lutz, head of Deutsche Bahn

Dhe Deutsche Bahn employees have to adjust to difficult times from the point of view of CEO Richard Lutz, despite the gradual recovery in passenger numbers. “Operationally, we have been in the red with the railroad in Germany since March, every month in the three-digit million range,” Lutz wrote in an internal letter to the workforce that was available to the German Press Agency. “Despite the expected and hoped-for recovery, it will remain so until the end of the year and will result in the largest operating loss in DB’s history in the current financial year.”

The pandemic hit all business areas hard. The necessary billions would not come from the federal government as the owner alone. “We all have our word and responsibility.” The employees should also be part of the solution, writes Lutz. In view of the billions in losses from the Corona crisis, the federal government had promised to add 5.5 to 6.7 billion euros to the railway.

Encouraging results?

In addition, the debt limit is to be raised so that the group can take on further liabilities. But the group itself must save – around two billion euros in personnel alone by 2024. However, Deutsche Bahn intends to stick to the planned new hires and investments as part of the “Strong Rail” strategy. “It was explicitly agreed that our employees would get perspective, security and stability for their workplaces”, Lutz emphasized again in the internal letter.

Talks are currently being held with the EVG trade union about how the savings should be achieved instead. The railway is therefore aiming to start official negotiations this week. “We will hopefully be able to inform you about encouraging results in a timely manner,” writes Lutz.