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Is Antonov Airlines Moving to Germany?

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DALLAS – Mega carrier Antonov Airlines (ADB) is working towards securing a new base in Leipzig, Germany. Reluctant to continue flying high, given the damage at its home airport of Hostomel, the city of Leipzig is a perfect match for Antonov now.

During a presentation in Vienna this week, ADB confirmed its intentions to move to Leipzig-Halle Airport (LEJ). Their home airport was so badly damaged during the Russian invasion, rendering it simply no longer usable—a true disaster for the airline.

It’s not just the airport but the loss of the one and only AN-225, an AN-74, and an AN-26-100 aircraft. Besides, one AN-124 and one AN-22A are damaged at the airport, with their condition under evaluation.

AW_Fabrizio-Spicuglia-AN-124-1024x576.jpAntonov Airlines Antonov An-124 Ruslan. Photo: Fabrizio Spicuglia/Airways

Why Leipzig?

Leipzig Airport, in Germany, is one of the world-leading cargo hubs – home to DHL. Antonov has been operating to and from here for several years, given Leipzig’s location is right in the middle of Europe and is fully capable of handling demand cargo operations it’s about a perfect fit.  

The five lucky An-124s planes that were outside Ukraine during the invasion are actively operating out of Leipzig – particularly flying for the Ukrainian government, NATO/European Union under the SALIS program, and humanitarian missions.

Antonov estimates that in the next 12 months it will conduct 385 flights, with 1,270 landings.

2022-05-13-1024x603.pngImage Google Earth

Task Ahead

The airline has stated it needs to relocate its entire base to the airport and deliver the spare engines, parts, and other special equipment that are currently in Ukraine.

Next, find sources for Western versions of the parts and equipment whenever possible, and transfer technical experts, personnel, and key staff members from the Hostomel office to a new Leipzig office.

Featured image: Antonov Airlines

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