Royal Caribbean Cruises has increased its two-thirds ownership of Silversea Cruises to full ownership of the luxury line.
“Silversea has been a great fit for our company from the very first day,” said Richard D. Fain, Chairman and CEO of Royal Caribbean Cruises. “The cultures of the two organizations have proven to be harmonious, and guests have responded favourably to the combination.”
Royal Caribbean Cruises, the second-largest cruise company in the world, first purchased a stake in Silversea two years ago and immediately embarked upon a major fleet expansion and revitalisation plan.
Manfredi Lefebvre d’Ovidio, who took over the company from his late father, will serve as chairman of Silversea. Roberto Martinoli will remain the brand’s president and CEO, according to a press release from Royal Caribbean.
“Manfredi and Roberto have brought a fresh point of view to our company, as well as deep knowledge of their brand’s unique audience,” Fain said. “Their skills – and Manfredi’s inimitable style – will continue to play an important role in growing Silversea into the future.”
“The combination of our companies has been everything I hoped for,” said Lefebvre. “The skills and resources of Royal Caribbean Group have helped us grow and flourish. We share a vision about the bright future of cruising, and I look forward to being a shareholder in the broader Royal Caribbean Group.”
The remaining one-third stake held by Heritage Cruise Holding Ltd. was paid for in the form of 5.2 million shares of Royal Caribbean Group common stock, which represents about 2.5% of the total common stock.
Silversea Cruises recently took delivery of two new cruise ships (Silver Spirit and Silver Muse) and has two additional ships Silver Moon and Silver Dawn due in 2020 and 2021 respectively.
Royal Caribbean has also helped fund a major fleetwide revitalisation of the cruise line. The project, called ‘Project Invictus’, saw an improved “champagne and caviar offering” added in August, 2018 to Silver Muse, while in December the same year the line’s 17-year-old Silver Whisper went into dry-dock for a major refurbishment.
All staterooms were upgraded, and public areas were redesigned or refreshed. Silversea says these same changes will be rolled out across the fleet, although the Coronavirus pandemic has disrupted most cruise ship newbuild and refit plans.