Silversea Cruises has officially joined the family of Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. (NYSE: RCL).
The companies announced today they have closed on RCL's acquisition of a two-thirds stake in Silversea after receiving final approval from regulators. The investment unites two leading players in the cruise industry and fills out RCL's portfolio of cruise brands across all key market segments.
"We are proud to officially welcome Silversea's industry-leading team to the RCL family," said Richard D. Fain, Chairman and CEO of Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. "This is a dynamite combination and we can't wait to work with Manfredi, Roberto and the entire team as together we take Silversea to the next level."
Regulators green-lighted Royal Caribbean's purchase of a 66.7% equity stake in Silversea Cruises, based on an enterprise value of approximately $2 billion. Manfredi Lefebvre d'Ovidio will remain Executive Chairman of Silversea and retain a 33.3% stake.
"We're excited to join the Royal Caribbean family and ready to begin this next chapter as part of an industry leader that is uniquely qualified to support Silversea's future growth," said Lefebvre. "This partnership enables us to realize our vision of being the uncontested leader in ultra-luxury cruising and expedition, taking our guests to more than 1,000 destinations aboard some of the world's most luxurious vessels."
The companies also announced Project Invictus, a multi-year initiative to take Silversea's ultra-luxury offerings to the next level. Project Invictus enhancements range from product upgrades to magnified ship revitalization programs. "Our intent is to solidify our already strong leadership position with an exciting array of upgrades that thrill our guests," said Roberto Martinoli, Silversea CEO.
The first Invictus enhancements will begin rolling out on the Silver Muse this upcoming August 19th where an upgraded champagne and caviar offering will be initiated. Immediately thereafter, these and other enhancements will be implemented fleet wide, impacting a wide variety of onboard features and strengthening Silversea's reputation for indulgent, luxurious embellishments.
Silversea's growing fleet of ultra-luxury ships will also benefit from an upgrade. The planned renovation of Silver Whisper in December 2018 will be much more comprehensive than initially anticipated and will include a partial refit of all guest cabins. Moreover, Silversea's Silver Wind will also enter into an enhanced dry dock in December 2018. Both vessels will join the overarching plan for a fleet-wide "Musification" which will take inspiration from the design of the very successful cruise line's flagship, Silver Muse. The plan will be completed shortly after with an enhanced dry dock of the Silver Shadow.
With Silversea joining the RCL lineup alongside Royal Caribbean International, Celebrity Cruises, Azamara Club Cruises, TUI Cruises and Pullmantur Cruceros, the Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. fleet now numbers 59 ships with an additional 15 on order.
J.P. Morgan Securities LLC acted as a financial advisor to RCL as well as served as the lead arranger for the debt financing in respect to the transaction.
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