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AIDAprima delivery to be delayed

The delivery of AIDAprima, the first of two 124,500 gross ton cruise ships AIDA cruises in Germany has on order at Mitsubishi Heavy Industries in Japan, will be delayed, AIDA Cruises said in a statement.

“Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd. (MHI) asked us for more time to complete the construction of AIDAprima. Although we regret these circumstances they are nothing unusual for the construction of prototypes. With AIDAprima we will receive something very special – the prototype of a whole new AIDA generation,” AIDA said.

"Our highest aim is to build a ship that will delight our guests with its product innovation, a top quality and more service, even if we will receive it now later than originally planned. We have informed all guests who have already booked a trip with AIDAprima in the premiere season, and of course offered them attractive alternatives."

The ship was due to enter service in June 2015.

“Our highest aim is to build a ship that will delight our guests with its product innovation, a top quality and more service, even if we will receive it now later than originally planned. We have informed all guests who have already booked a trip with AIDAprima in the premiere season, and of course offered them attractive alternative,” the company said.

AIDA Cruises is part of Carnival Corp & plc group.

Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. promotes Adam Goldstein to President and COO

Adam Goldstein has been named president and chief operating officer of Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd., the company announced today.

Goldstein, a 25-year company veteran, had spent the previous 12 years as president and CEO of the company's largest cruise line, Royal Caribbean International.

"Adam has played a key role in growing Royal Caribbean International, step by step, into a global leader. In the course of doing so, he has become an impressive leader in his own right," said Richard D. Fain, chairman and chief executive officer of Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. "In this new role, Adam will be able to put his broad worldview and strategic insights to use leading our varied cross-functional teams."

As well as working with Fain on the company's strategic direction, Goldstein's portfolio will include Human Resources, Information Technology, Supply Chain, Corporate Communications, Safety & Environment, Government Relations, Guest Port Operations and Commercial Development.  "We believe that it's important for our brands to have their own personalities and business plans," Fain said. "But it's also important to pursue best practices, and to make sure that the insights we learn within individual lines can be applied to the entire company's benefit. When we do that, we are a stronger business," Fain said.

Goldstein said he was looking forward to the challenge.

"Royal Caribbean was a five-ship company when I arrived here, and today we are many times larger than that," Goldstein said. "We now have more than 60,000 employees taking our guests to every continent of the world, as well as the most technologically advanced ships at sea. The opportunity we have is to take even greater advantage of our global scale and knowledge, while delivering the guest satisfaction that helped us grow to where we are today."

Goldstein begins his new responsibilities immediately, Fain said. A search for a new leader for the Royal Caribbean International line is underway.  In the meantime, Goldstein will assist with transition while he also takes up his new responsibilities.

"Today's announcement underscores the strength and stability of our company and its depth of leadership talent," Fain said. "We believe our strategy of appealing to vacationers around the world, matched with our commitment to innovation, safety and sensible growth, positions us well for the future. I am pleased to have Adam bring his skills to bear on bringing this strategy to life."

Goldstein joined the company in 1988, and served in a number of positions before taking the helm of Royal Caribbean International, including Senior Vice President, Total Guest Satisfaction; Senior Vice President, Marketing; and Corporate Secretary to the company's Board of Directors.

Goldstein is a member of the Washington-based Energy Security Leadership Council. He served on the board of the Travel Industry Association of America (now the U.S. Travel Association) from 1993 to 2012, and is a member of the advisory board for Our Kids, which is engaged in foster care and related services for Florida youth.

Goldstein graduated with honors from Princeton University. He also has a law degree from Harvard University and an MBA with distinction from the French business school INSEAD. Goldstein and his wife have two children and live in Coral Gables, FL.

UPDATED: Scanship Holding to go public in Oslo, raise at least NOK80 million

On 8 April, Scanship said it had sold 26.0 million shares at NOK3.20 each. Trading in them would start on the Oslo Axess market on 11 april.

Scanship Holding ASA plans to list its shares on the Oslo Axess market and raise at least NOK80 million by selling 31.25 new shares to investors.

The Norwegian waste processing and water purification specialist said in a statement its current shareholders have agreed to sell another 31.25 million shares in the company in the offer, which it expects to be priced in the bracket of NOK3.20 to NOK4.00 per share. The current shareholders can sell a further 15% of the number of new shares in case there is strong demand for the offer.

The company expects trading in its shares to commence on or about 11 April.

Sir Richard Branson reported to have raised most of $1.7 billion to start Virgin Cruise

Sir Richard Branson, the multi billionaire British businessman, is reported to have raised most of the $1.7 billion he needs to launch Virgin Cruise, media reports say.

“It’s true that we are looking to set up Virgin Cruises and most of the money is now committed,” Branson told select media in Dubai on Monday. He also hinted that some funding is likely to come from Gulf, according to the Sydney Morning Herald newspaper in Australia. Britain has close links with many of the Gulf states.

Cruise Business Online understands that Tillberg Design, the Swedish interior design company with long track record in passenger shipping, is involved with the project. Sir Richard is reportedly in talks with yards in Italy and Germany to build the first two vessels of the company.

“We are looking at a very different kind of cruise company. We’re trying to create the kind of cruise ship that would be attractive to the kind of people who would never consider a cruise at the moment,” Sir Richard told The National newspaper in the United Arab Emirates, where he has reportedly been in discussion with investors.

Sir Richard, who is involved with the Abu Dhabi government-backed investment group Aabar in the space industry, is believed to be looking to raise $1.7 billion in a mix of debt and equity for the venture. He will look to build a cruise fleet from scratch, starting with the construction of two new vessels to work the traditional cruise markets in the Caribbean and Mediterranean.

A Virgin spokesman told The National the Gulf cruise market could be a later focus. If the necessary investment is forthcoming, the cruise line could start operating in 2019, he added.

“We would offer more entertainment and leisure opportunities on board the ships, making them attractive to a younger market. We believe we can supply the Virgin ‘touch’ on cabins, leisure and dining facilities,” the spokesman was quoted as saying.


Carnival shares fall more than 3% in London and New York after interims

Shares in the two Carnival Corp & plc holding companies fell sharply after the company had unveiled its first quarter to 28 February interims results.

Carnival plc, the British holding company the shares in which are listed on the London Stocck Exchange, traded down 3.3% at £23.78 at 1430 local time. The shares hit a 52 week high at £26.15, while the low for the same period is £20.17.

In new York, Carnival Corporation, which is a Panama domiciled company whose shares are traded on the New York Stock Exchange, was 3.5% down at $38.72. Their 52-week high is $41.89 while the low for the same period is $31.44.

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