Norwegian Cruise Line boss nets $1.3m in the share sale

Image result for andy stewart nCL

Norwegian Cruise Line boss Andy Stuart netted $1.3 million from the sale of shares.

He sold 25,000 shares in parent company Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings in two tranches last week, according to a filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission.

The sale at $50 per share came after the company reported record second-quarter financial results with earnings of $240.2 million for the three months to June 30.

The lift in profits came despite the impact of the abrupt US government ban on cruise ships calling into Cuba and a technical problem with the ship Norwegian Pearl which forced one cruise to be amended and another to be canceled.

Company president and CEO Frank Del Rio said at the time: “The underlying fundamentals of our business remain strong across all core markets, and we continue to expect record financial results in 2019, despite the impact from the change in federal regulations which resulted in the cessation of premium-priced Cuba sailings.”

NCLH has a market capitalization of $10.88 billion and controls NCL alongside Oceania and Regent Seven Seas Cruises.

Norwegian CEO: Mediterranean cruising bouncing back

Photo by Dave Jones; Norwegian Jade in Santorini

Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings CEO Frank Del Rio said bookings for the Mediterranean have been strong in the past eight weeks, and that the company’s 2017 results will hinge on whether that continues.

Del Rio said business sourced in North America for the Med is up “strong double digits” across all three of the company’s brands (Norwegian Cruise Line, Oceania and Regent Seven Seas Cruises) for the past eight weeks.

He said occupancies are currently flat and that pricing is behind in the Med for the second half of 2017, but that pricing could be up by year’s end if the current trend continues.

Del Rio said that because of the outsized yields of European itineraries, “2017 will greatly depend on the Med.”

In 2017, Norwegian will have 23% of its capacity in Europe, which is up due to the redeployment of the Norwegian Getaway to the Baltic, where demand is strong, Del Rio said.

Del Rio commented in a conference call for analysts held to discuss third-quarter earnings.

In the third quarter, Norwegian reported net income of $342.4 million compared to $251.8 million a year earlier. Revenue rose 15.6% to $1.5 billion.

Cruise lines and tour ops cancel visits to Ukraine, Crimea

By Michelle Baran

Sevastopol's Monument to Scuttled ShipsAs Russia annexed Crimea and the Ukraine government began to withdraw its military personnel from the peninsula this week, travel suppliers began cancelling visits to Ukraine and Russia, as well as to Crimean destinations.

Cruise lines have begun altering some of their Black Sea sailings to bypass previously scheduled port stops in Odessa, Sevastopol and Yalta.

Windstar, Oceania, MSC, Regent Seven Seas and Azamara have substituted port calls in alternative countries, including Turkey, Romania, Bulgaria and Greece.

Silversea canceled calls to the Crimean peninsula for the April 25 Black Sea sailing of the Silver Wind and for the July 21 departure of the Silver Spirit. However, should the situation in Crimea improve, the line said it would consider returning to its original itineraries.

Viking Cruises has a 12-day Footsteps of the Cossacks river cruise on the 196-passenger Viking Sineus, which sails from Kiev into the heart of the Crimean peninsula, with port stops in Sevastopol and Yalta. But its Ukraine departures begin in May, and the company has yet to decide if it will cancel any sailings.

“Though we know our passengers are paying attention to the developments on the ground, we have not yet seen significant cancellations,” Richard Marnell, Viking’s senior vice president of marketing, wrote in an email.

During a speech earlier this month at a dinner event to celebrate the christening of its latest generation of river cruise ships, Viking Cruises Chairman Torstein Hagen said that while nearly all of Viking’s river cruise capacity through the end of October was sold out, space was still available on its Ukraine sailings.

Many tour operators have already canceled either part or all of their 2014 tour itineraries that include stops in Crimea, offering affected passengers refunds or the option to rebook travel elsewhere.

Globus canceled all 2014 departures of its Ukraine and Crimea tour; Insight Vacations is no longer offering its 12-day Ukraine, Moldova and Crimea tour; and Intrepid Travel has canceled three Ukraine departures through mid-June.