Category Archives: Lufthansa Group

Lufthansa Group is standardizing its Airbus A320 fleet

"Carnuntum", ex Lufthansa D-AIZK

The Lufthansa Group is driving forward the standardization of its Airbus A320 fleet: Austrian Airlines, Brussels Airlines, Eurowings, Lufthansa and Swiss International are developing a standard specification for the Airbus A320 fleet. At the same time, the airline brands will be preserved by a different brand look.

The standardization process applies to aircraft that will be delivered to Lufthansa Group Airlines as of 2019 onward.

When it comes to standardization, the airlines are focusing on the large, cost-intensive components such as cabin design and the galley. However, even components such as emergency equipment or electronic flight bag systems should comply with a uniform and group-wide standard in future. Further standardization, for example with regard to freight loading, is being developed in cooperation with the manufacturer.

In the future, the Airbus A320 is to be configured and standardized from the outset in such a way that aircraft can be converted within a short time and with little effort when they are transferred between Lufthansa Group airlines. This will allow the Lufthansa Group to react more quickly and flexibly to current developments and to move aircraft and capacities more easily and efficiently between the airlines and the Group’s hubs.

Costs for conversion and layover time can be significantly reduced. Moreover, standardization will result in further synergies when purchasing aircraft.

All in all, Lufthansa Group airlines are expecting to receive around 100 brand-new aircraft from the Airbus A320neo family by 2025.

Copyright Photo: The pictured Austrian OE-LBY was ex-Lufthansa D-AIZK. Austrian Airlines Airbus A320-214 OE-LBY (msn 5122) ZRH (Andi Hiltl). Image: 938291.

Austrian Airlines aircraft slide show:

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From Reuters: Lufthansa CEO calls for significant cuts at Alitalia

Alitalia's 1960 retrojet

According to a report by Reuters, Lufthansa envisions a need for a significant restructuring at Alitalia before it will entertain a bid for the ailing flag carrier of Italy.

According to Reuters, Lufthansa’s CEO Carsten Spohr stated in a letter to Italian Industry Minister Carlo Calenda that a “New Alitalia” would be much smaller in size as relating to staff and its fleet if the Lufthansa Group took control of the airline.

Read the FULL REPORT.

The Italian government and Alitalia have not commented on the report.

Copyright Photo: Alitalia (2nd) (Compagnie Aerea Italiana) Airbus A321-112 EI-IXI (msn 494) (1960 logojet) LHR (SPA). Image: 924757.

Alitalia aircraft slide show:

 

Lufthansa Group to hire more than 8,000 new employees in 2018

Lufthansa Group has made this announcement:

In 2018, Deutsche Lufthansa AG will hire more than 8,000 new employees. The majority of them will be flight attendants who will work for various Lufthansa Group airlines in 2018. Lufthansa, Germany’s largest airline, will be hiring around 2,500 flight attendants alone at its hubs in Frankfurt and Munich; overall, the Lufthansa Group airlines will employ more than 4,000 new recruits.

Last year, besides its conventional application processes, Lufthansa carried out 11 “flight attendant castings”, which aroused great interest among the target group. Over 4,500 candidates have so far attended the various auditions and nearly 6,000 the regular applicants’ days in Frankfurt. Almost every third applicant received a job offer.

Just like Adriana Werner. “I’ve always wanted to work for Lufthansa,” says the mid-50-year-old new recruit, who was successful at the Lufthansa “flight attendant casting” in Offenburg last winter. “Being a flight attendant was and is a very big dream of mine. I couldn’t believe my luck at first,” she says happily. The dream of flying is now a reality for Adriana Werner.

However, employees are also being hired in other areas of the Group. Around 500 new hires are, for example, being planned for Lufthansa Technik at various locations. Austrian Airlines is also hiring a total of more than 500 new recruits, including flight attendants for the check-in and the cockpit, among others, and is also looking for employees in other business areas. With 38,000 employees, Lufthansa is the largest employer in Frankfurt and the federal state of Hesse.

The training of young people has special significance for the aviation group. In the 2017/18 training year, 250 new recruits will begin training or studying in the Lufthansa Group across Germany. And the choice is huge: A total of ten study programs and 30 apprenticeships – such as tool mechanic, systems catering, forwarding agent and logistics services – are available.

“Lufthansa is still one of the most attractive companies in Germany and is the ideal employer for many applicants. Last year, over 100,000 applications were submitted to the career portal http://www.Be-Lufthansa.com. We’re very proud of that. We are very pleased that we are able to hire more than 8,000 employees again this year,” says Dr. Bettina Volkens, member of the Executive Board and Head of HR & Legal Affairs at Deutsche Lufthansa AG.

Detailed information on entry opportunities in the Lufthansa Group and requirements can be found at http://www.Be-Lufthansa.com. Besides the “flight attendant castings”, applications can only be submitted via the career portal. A visit to the career fan page “Be-Lufthansa” on Facebook is also worthwhile. At http://www.facebook.de/BeLufthansa, HR experts give valuable tips and answer questions about the world of work in the Lufthansa Group. Or just click blog.be-lufthansa.com to get useful tips on possible training opportunities at Lufthansa.

In other news, Lufthansa also made this announcement:

 

The future of flying starts now: over a period of several months, the finalists of the “Telekom Fashion Fusion & Lufthansa FlyingLab” fashion and technology competition worked at Fab Lab Berlin on intelligent solutions for the flight experience of tomorrow. Three prototypes will be presented and tested on board a Lufthansa Airbus A380 today on its flight from Frankfurt to Houston. The young developer teams are presenting their ideas for new airline seats, on-board entertainment, and methods of communication between cabin crew and passengers. The platform of the event on flight LH440 is the Lufthansa FlyingLab, which gives Lufthansa passengers the opportunity to try out innovative products and services and find out more about smart fashion in a series of presentations – all at 33,000 feet.

Kai Duve, Head of Frankfurt Cabin Crews at Deutsche Lufthansa AG and member of the judging panel, is pleased with the innovative developments in the competition: “Technology and fashion are part of Lufthansa’s DNA. We’ve been working on functional clothing for 60 years. The challenge helps us expand our pool of ideas and gain valuable outside impetus: we can find out what our passengers really want on board. It brings us even closer to the flight experience of tomorrow.”

Overview of the teams:

Team feel.flight: Increased well-being on long-haul flights
The feel.flight team is presenting a full product system for improved individual communication and well-being on future long-haul flights. The center of communications between passengers and flight attendants is a chatbot, which can be addressed through most of the widespread messenger apps such as WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger. The chatbot is capable of classifying passenger needs, arranging them by priority, and coordinating the appropriate service activities. For other matters, such as requests for food and drinks or tips against fear of flying, a flight attendant becomes involved. Their uniform cuffs contain small displays that are linked with microcontrollers. For increased travel comfort, a blanket with integrated neck pillow can be worn like a cape and adjusted to the passenger’s individual need for warmth. Vibrations in the blanket’s neck pillow can wake the passenger gently, without a flight attendant having to intervene.

Team Smart Chair: The airline seat of tomorrow 
The Smart Chair project – which is more of a visionary concept study than a functional prototype – focuses on flight passengers’ personal space. Every passenger will enjoy a fully customized flight experience in their Smart Chairs – from entertainment program to travel comfort. The Smart Chair team also worked on a new outfit for cabin personnel. The fabrics used to make the prototype uniforms are thermoregulated, breathable, antibacterial, and antiallergic. As such, they stand up to the high demands of flight attendant workwear.

Team Lyra: Better focus on passengers with smart glasses
The Lyra team, with its “LYRA Connect” web application, wants to improve future communication between passengers and cabin crew, and thus personal service on board. For the flight attendants, LYRA Connect minimizes routing and optimizes service activities. Passengers can use their own mobile devices to send requests easily to the flight crew. Passengers can use it to order drinks, for example, or ask whether they will make their connecting flights. The next available flight attendant sees the request directly in their field of vision, thanks to smart glasses, and knows immediately who has asked the question or placed the order. The flight attendants can also call up additional information about passengers. To do so, they have to stand on a signal field, which is installed in the floor in front of each seat. LYRA then displays the corresponding information discretely on the flight attendant’s smart glasses. As a result, the flight attendant can find out in advance which language a passenger speaks, for example, or which meal preferences they specified.

The teams used modern information and manufacturing technologies to develop their prototypes, including 3D printing, laser cutting, digitally supported Jacquard weaves, and even the integration of artificial intelligence. The teams were supported by digitization and aviation experts, as well as by partner companies, over the entire project phase. Zeiss Smart Optics provided its slim data goggles for testing, for example.

The industry focus of the competition was a complete success
Deutsche Telekom, the initiator of Fashion Fusion, is also convinced that the industry focus they defined in this year’s challenge, on the future of flying, together with partner Lufthansa, was successful.

“The Fashion Fusion Challenge shows how digitization can positively change our travel experience on board aircraft and increase our personal well-being. We see ourselves as enablers here, because smart gadgets, smart fashion, and wearables require connectivity. With our gigabit network of the future and the best network technologies, we offer smart future experiences,” says Antje Hundhausen, Vice President for 3D Brand Experience at Deutsche Telekom.

Collaboration with the finalists extended
Following the Lufthansa FlyingLab, the prototypes will be presented to an international audience in Las Vegas, at an accompanying event to the CES (Consumer Electronics Show). The initiators of this exclusive challenge are pursuing further ventures with the teams: Lufthansa plans to pilot a larger number of the feel.flight blankets during the next FlyingLab, for example. Deutsche Telekom has also invited several teams to attend brand presentations at the Mobile World Congress and #FASHIONTECH in Berlin. Deutsche Telekom is also in talks with the Lyra team about the further development of the web application.

In-flight conference with renowned digital experts
The conference portion is the heart of each Lufthansa FlyingLabs flight. On board flight LH440, five renowned digital experts are providing insights into the topic “Fashion & Technology“: Prof. Dr. Paul Lukowicz (German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence), Christian Stammel (CEO of Wearable Technologies AG), Dr. Sabine Seymour (CEO of SUPA), Camille Bénech (Global Brand Lead for Luxury & Beauty at Google), and Paul Dillinger (VP and Head of Global Product Innovation and Premium Collection Design for Levi Strauss & Co). The speakers will be on camera on the Lufthansa flagship. All passengers will see the live video stream and presentations via WiFi, over a network installed specifically for the FlyingLab. The system also permits passengers to use their own devices to send questions to the speakers. The result is not only a one-of-a-kind conference atmosphere at cruising altitude, but also a dialog between passengers and experts.

Photos: Lufthansa Group.

European Commission approves the Lufthansa Group’s acquisition of LGW – Luftfahrtgesellschaft Walter

Airberlin (airberlin.com) (LGW) Bombardier DHC-8-402 (Q400) D-ABQB (msn 4226) ZRH (Rolf Wallner). Image: 928479.

Lufthansa Group made this announcement:

The European Commission gave its formal approval on December 21, 2017 to the acquisition of Luftfahrtgesellschaft Walter mbH (LGW) by the Lufthansa Group. The approval follows an extensive assessment of the planned transaction by the European Union’s competition authorities in their merger control capacity, after the Lufthansa Group concluded an agreement on October 13, 2017 to take over parts of the insolvent Air Berlin Group. The Lufthansa Group had made extensive concessions in advance of this approval.

All LGW personnel to be taken over

The acquisition of LGW will see 33 aircraft firmly added to the Eurowings Group fleet: 20 Bombardier DHC-8-400s (Q400s) (above) and 13 aircraft of the Airbus A320 family. All the employees of LGW will transfer to Eurowings with their current contracts of employment. With additional recruitments, the number of personnel in LGW’s flight operations should rise to up to 870 in 2018.

The formal transaction for the acquisition of LGW has been scheduled for January 2018.

Over the past few weeks, Eurowings has already hired over 500 employees, including a large number of pilots and flight attendants. By now, we have collective expansion agreements with all the unions ensuring that all flight operations of Eurowings, without exception, will be able to grow in the near term.

Copyright Photo: All LGW aircraft with now operate in the Eurowings livery, shedding the Airberlin color scheme. Airberlin (airberlin.com) (LGW) Bombardier DHC-8-402 (Q400) D-ABQB (msn 4226) ZRH (Rolf Wallner). Image: 928479.

Lufthansa Group submits a concept for establishing a re-structured Alitalia

Alitalia's first Boeing 777-300

The Lufthansa Group submitted an offer letter on October 17, 2017, expressing its interest in establishing a “NewAlitalia”. Lufthansa has opted not to make an offer for the complete Airline but has stated interest in only parts of the Global network traffic and European and domestic point-to-point business.

The offer includes a concept for a newly structured Alitalia with a focused business model (“NewAlitalia”), which could develop long-term economic prospects.

The responsible commissioners have agreed to maintain confidentiality regarding the details of the offer.

Copyright Photo: Alitalia (3rd) (Societa Aerea Italiana) Boeing 777-3Q8 ER EI-WLA (msn 35783) ZRH (Andi Hiltl). Image: 939460.

Lufthansa Group airlines to fly to 308 destinations in 103 countries this summer

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The airlines in the Lufthansa Group – Austrian Airlines, Brussels Airlines, Eurowings, Lufthansa and Swiss International Air Lines – will be an even more attractive option for holidaymakers this summer. As always, passengers can rely on the high standard of service, quality and reliability of the Lufthansa Group.

The Group continued;

In the forthcoming 2017 summer flight timetable, the airlines will offer their customers precisely 23,476 flights each week around the world. This summer, the Lufthansa Group airlines will link 308 destinations in 103 countries via their hubs in Frankfurt, Munich, Zurich, Vienna and Brussels, but also via many point-to-point routes. These services will be supplemented by more than 18,000 code-sharing flights with some 30 partner airlines, offering passengers a network which almost spans the globe. The summer flight timetables for the individual Group airlines apply from Sunday, March 26, 2017 until Saturday, October 28, 2017.

The main news from the Lufthansa Group airlines:

Lufthansa

Lufthansa is adding new attractive tourist destinations to its European flight timetable for the forthcoming summer season 2017. Lufthansa flies its holiday passengers to the “best weeks of the year” with the service of a scheduled airline – whether it’s for a beach holiday, an expedition or a city break.

From the end of March 2017 for the first time, there will be three flights a week from Frankfurt to Santiago de Compostela (Spain). Bordeaux (France) is on Lufthansa’s flight plan from Frankfurt twice a week for wine fans and sun-seekers. Flights leave on Thursdays and Sundays for the metropolis on the Gironde, the economic, political and cultural capital of south-west France.

Lufthansa is offering flights to Shannon (Ireland) once a week from Frankfurt. Shannon is in County Clare, one of Ireland’s most popular holiday regions.

The program of summer destinations from Frankfurt is completed by Pula in Croatia and the Baltic resort of Heringsdorf.

Last but not least, fans of the flower island of Madeira will be happy, because Lufthansa is now offering flights to Funchal (Portugal) from Frankfurt all year round, not just in winter. And Frankfurt–Paderborn is now back in the Lufthansa flight plan, too.

Starting this summer, Lufthansa will be extending its route network from Munich to include two great new flight destinations. Beginning March 28, 2017, there will be flights six times a week from Munich to Nantes, located in the Pays de la Loire region of France. Additionally, at the beginning of the Easter holidays, on April 9, 2017, Lufthansa will, for the first time, offer flights from Bavaria‘s capital to Santiago de Compostela in northern Spain. From March 27, 2017 onwards, there will also be flights departing from Frankfurt every Monday, Thursday and Friday to the pilgrimage destination in Spain. This summer travelers will also have the chance to fly non-stop to Marrakech for the first time. There will be flights twice a week to the Moroccan royal city – popular with lovers of culture – departing every Friday and Sunday.

Aside from these new destinations, the summer flight schedule is also being expanded to include more flights to some already popular destinations. There will be more weekly flights to Malta, Cologne, Dublin, the Romanian city of Sibiu, Geneva, Graz and St. Petersburg.

The first Airbus A350-900 is delivered to Lufthansa

Copyright Photo: Lufthansa Airbus A350-941 D-AIXA (msn 074) TLS (Eurospot). Image: 936200.

North America fans starting from Munich will be happy too – both the Canadian city of Montreal and Denver in the USA will be featured daily in the future flight program. There is also something special coming for Lufthansa passengers traveling to Boston – from March 14, 2017 onwards, the new Lufthansa A350-900 will be flying to this city in Massachusetts. A third A350-900 service will start to Mumbai in the second half of April. This aircraft is currently the most advanced and most environmentally-friendly long haul aircraft in the world. If you don’t want to wait until then for this amazing new flight experience, starting February 10, 2017, you can fly with the Airbus A350-900 to New Delhi. Lufthansa will be operating daily flights to the Indian capital throughout the summer.

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Austrian Airlines

Austrian Airlines is adding another long-haul destination in North America to its 2017 summer flight timetable. From April 10, 2017, there will be up to six flights a week with a Boeing 777-200 to the biggest city in California, Los Angeles (USA). Austrian Airlines will offer a total of up to 44 weekly non-stop flights to North America in the 2017 summer flight plan. They include up to five flights a week to Miami, up to six a week to Los Angeles and Toronto, and up to seven connections a week to Washington and Chicago. Austrian will continue to offer a total of 13 flights a week to Newark and JFK in New York. The airline will be adding a second long-haul destination to its portfolio in 2017. From October 25, 2017, there will be a nonstop flight every Wednesday from Vienna to the Seychelles in the Indian Ocean. Austrian Airlines will offer its passengers a wide range of up to 130 destinations in total in its 2017 summer flight timetable.

Brussels Airlines

Brussels Airlines is welcoming five new destinations this summer. From March 30, the Belgian airline in the Lufthansa Group will connect Brussels Airport five times a week with Mumbai (India). Several tourist destinations will be added to the short- and medium-haul route network at Brussels Airlines. Funchal (Portugal), Comiso (Italy), Rhodes (Greece) and Palma de Mallorca (Spain) will feature in the Brussels Airlines flight plan for the first time. As well as introducing new destinations, the Belgian airline is also increasing the number of flights on existing routes. Abidjan (Ivory Coast), Accra (Ghana), Lisbon, Porto (both Portugal), Alicante (Spain), Bordeaux (France), Billund (Denmark), Warsaw (Poland) and Athens (Greece) will have more frequent connections to Brussels Airport, the Brussels Airlines hub.

Eurowings

Eurowings will continue to expand its long-haul program from Cologne/Bonn in the forthcoming 2017 summer flight timetable. From June, passengers can fly twice a week to Las Vegas (USA). Windhoek (Namibia) is the first route to Africa to feature in the flight timetable. Another new destination from Cologne is the iconic German island of Sylt. It will be served with three flights a week, with one flight a week to the Greek island of Karpathos. Then there are the eastern European cities of Pula (Croatia) and Cracow (Poland), with two and six flights a week respectively from Düsseldorf.

For passengers who don’t want to fly far for their sun and sand, Eurowings is flying three times a week to Ibiza (Spain) and once a week to Cagliari (Sardinia) from Hanover this summer. Our passengers also have the opportunity to fly to Faro, on the Portuguese Algarve, twice a week.

Passengers can also fly from Berlin Tegel to Faro (Portugal) every Sunday and to the Greek island of Mykonos once a week.

There are also two new connections for Eurowings passengers from Stuttgart. They can fly three times a week to Pisa (Italy) and once a week to Cyprus.

Eurowings is also adding four new routes from Vienna to its summer flight timetable. There are two flights a week to Kavala in the Macedonia region of Greece and one to Lamezia Terme in Calabria. Zadar in northern Dalmatia will be served with three flights a week, with two flights a week to Santorini (Greece).

Two Airbus A320s are initially to be stationed at the new Eurowings base in Palma de Mallorca from the end of May 2017. In the summer, they will fly from Mallorca to Paderborn/Lippstadt, Münster/Osnabrück and Saarbrücken, as well as to Basel in Switzerland.

Eurowings is offering a total of 32 new routes from Munich for the first time, starting in the summer. They include six connections a week from Munich to Paris, London and Amsterdam, along with three to Naples and two to Mykonos.

"Landing at the Zurich Base"

Copyright Photo: Swiss International Air Lines Boeing 777-3DE ER HB-JNB (msn 44583) ZRH (Andi Hiltl). Image: 933436.

Swiss International Air Lines

Swiss International Air Lines will expand its capacity from Zurich and Geneva in the forthcoming summer flight timetable. From April 22, 2017, Swiss will operate new daily services from Zurich to San Francisco (USA) with the Boeing 777-300ER. Between June and October 2017, the Boeing 777-300ER will also be in service on six of the 12 weekly connections to Chicago. Swiss will add five new seasonal destinations to its summer flight plan: Bergen, Cork, Figari, Niš and Sylt. Introducing additional Bombardier CSeries aircraft in Zurich and Geneva will enable Swiss to offer its passengers even greater comfort on European routes.

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Edelweiss

Edelweiss, the sister airline of Swiss, will begin services to the Greek island of Zakynthos in the summer season.

Top Image: Lufthansa Group.

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Lufthansa to take over 100% of Brussels Airlines, will be joining the Eurowings Group

Brussels Airlines 2013 "Belgian Red Devils" special livery

Lufthansa has issued this statement:

  • Deutsche Lufthansa AG takes over 100 percent of SN Airholding
  • Brussels Airlines to be fully integrated into the Lufthansa Group as of 2018 and joining the Eurowings Group
  • Attractive home markets Belgium and Brussels and well-established Africa network will further strengthen the Lufthansa and Eurowings Group market position
  • Advantageous cost-structure allowing Brussels Airlines to successfully compete with the tough low-cost competition in the Belgian market

After Lufthansa and the shareholders of SN Airholding had agreed on the terms of the complete takeover, Deutsche Lufthansa AG’s Executive Board on December 14, 2016 decided to exercise the call option for the outstanding 55 percent of the shares. The call option comes into effect by December 31, 2016. The closing of the transaction will happen by the beginning of January 2017.

The price mechanism for the take-over of the remaining 55 percent of the shares had already been part of the agreement for the call option in 2008. The price for the acquisition of the remaining 55 percent of the shares is 2.6 million euros, which will be paid to a consortium of 30 shareholders.

Carsten Spohr, Chairman of the Executive Board and CEO of Deutsche Lufthansa AG: “Following the acquisition of the 45 per cent share of SN Airholding eight years ago, we now want to take a next step in our already very solid and successful cooperation. As a longstanding shareholder and partner of Brussels Airlines, we are already closely linked to each other. Accordingly, we value Belgium and especially Brussels as highly attractive markets that perfectly complement our offer in the heart of Europe. In addition, Brussels Airlines has a competitive cost structure already and brings a well-established long-haul network, especially to and from Africa, to the Lufthansa Group portfolio. We also very much appreciate the high qualification, motivation and performance of the 3,500 Brussels Airlines employees.”

After the acquisition, Brussels Airlines will continue to operate its 23 long-haul destinations as well as 79 destinations within Europe under the umbrella of the Eurowings Group.

The brand ‘Brussels Airlines’ will be complemented by the claim “Member of the Eurowings Group”. The common goal of Lufthansa and Brussels Airlines is to further strengthen the market position in the Belgian Airline market.

The current fleet harmonization towards an Airbus A320 family fleet for the European network will be continued. With its fleet of 42 short- and medium-haul aircraft and nine A330 long-haul aircraft, Brussels Airlines has significantly increased the number of its passengers. From 2013 to 2015 only, this number has increased by 30 per cent to a total of 7.5 million passengers. In the medium term, investments are planned to further improve the fleet-efficiency and increase the capacity on the short- and long-haul network.

In the past three years, Brussels Airlines has reduced its non-fuel unit costs by almost ten per cent and established sustainably efficient structures. For the financial year 2015, the leading Belgian airline generated an operating profit of 43.4 million euros. With the full integration of Brussels Airlines, synergies are to generate up to a mid-double digit million euro contribution per year. In the short-term, integration costs may burden earnings at first.

In the future, Brussels Airlines will assume an important role in the further development of the Eurowings Group into a pan-European platform. In order to personally accompany the integration process, Carsten Spohr will join the Brussels Airlines Board as Co-Chairman, next to Viscount Etienne Davignon. Unchanged, three further Belgian members will belong to the Board. The Brussels Airlines Management Board remains unchanged under the leadership of CEO Bernard Gustin. In addition an Advisory Council will be established and will support the integration process.

Copyright Photo: Brussels Airlines Airbus A320-214 OO-SNC (msn 1797) (Belgian Red Devils) GVA (Paul Denton). Image: 934664.

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