M/S Isabella was sold and the news came today. The vessel is quite close to SHIPSU and the members in the service at this time. We announced earlier this year in SHIPSU open requests to do maintenance work to M/S Isabella, vessel owned by Viking Line who just replaced her with Viking Grace, this modern LNG powered cruiserferry. This time the open request of refurbishment work was limited to upholstery works only. Reason for this limited refurbishment was obvious; the ship was in great shape. I discussed with Viking Line representative about the future of the ship and it was supposed to start operating between Helsinki, Finland and Tallinn, Estonia. The route is very popular because of the close location of these two ports and a lot of people travelling on that route in both business and pleasure. According to the new owner, the vessel will be placed to route between Riga, Latvia and Stockholm, Sweden.
Marketing in business to business environment is all about the connections and communication to correct audience. There are several outstanding events to take part and communicate with the industry. Networking, direct sales, new leads and valuable customer contacts are available at conventions and exhibitions. As we see, it we have the perfect setup to communicate one to many. We introduce our network of professional in magazines, do directed web marketing in SEO, social media and banner advertising but one of the most important features it to be seen in is a well-chosen exhibition. This week, www.SHIPSU.com is attending in Cruise Shipping Miami.
In the beginning of February, we had a visit to STX France and had a proper meeting with the procurement department. We had an audit request from the Sourcing director himself and were naturally pleased to hear, that our concept awakened so much interest. Why wouldn’t it be interesting to sourcing department and to the person in charge of sourcing in a giga-size project, which is completely new for the organization?
I’ve taken a time off from blogging about the third Oasis class ship although there is quite interesting debate going on at least in the Scandinavia. The fact is, that STX France has the big project on hand and naturally it is the main thing that matters at least for those involved with that huge project. The client wants to get the most spectacular piece of cruise ship delivered with quality. There are challenges on the way but after all, it is just work and with right attitude and resources, many difficult things can be resolved. There might be stones on the path to success, but it is up to individuals whether they build a wall or a bridge from the stones.
I’ve been having a bunch of meetings internally, sewing network with professionals in the business and virtually welding together an interesting concept for the industry. Early this week our team is happy to inform, that we have received a request to visit the procurement department of STX France. The Sourcing director himself answered to us and we’re preparing the trip as we speak.
It is interesting to hear what they think, how the concept of ours could help them to find the best service providers and material manufacturers with the latest references with the previous Oasis class vessels and other cruise ships in the world.
Update [11.2.2013]: The latest news say, that the vessel is sold to a Singaporean owner, who will most probably scrap the vessel.
Original [12/2012]: The media has announced, at the same time with the news of third oasis class ship to be built in France, that the new-build contract includes the transfer of Pullmantur’s Cruise ship Atlantic Star as part of the consideration. Pullmantur Cruises is a Spanish cruise line owned by Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. Pullmantur has operated a cruise vessel Atlantic Star, which is owned by Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. The vessel however, has been laid off in Marseille since 2010 despite of Wikipedia stating since April 2012.
First, I’d like to congratulate RCCL for the new vessel in the pipeline. RCCL’s president Mr. Richard Fain has commented to the media, that the Oasis –class vessels have been a huge success, which I strongly believe. The third oasis class ship and the possible option has demand in the market. As analysed in the earlier posts about the third Oasis –type series, RCCL’s EBITDA levels have risen since both Oasis and Allure of the Seas vessels have been in service. Economics of scale matters!
Despite what the rumours have told and the newspapers written, it is starting to seem, that the third Oasis class or Oasis “type” ship is going to be built elsewhere than her sisters. The two first Oasis class ships were built in Turku, Finland. Now the situation seems, according to several sources, to be the following:
- STX Finland Oy’s equity level is not good enough for Finnish governmental guarantees
- STX France is capable to do the work
- STX France is partially owned by the French government
The final part of a three-part blog series concerning the third Oasis Class ship is here. This series was a short speculation, which consisted of three dimensions and this is the third one:
- Finnish shipbuilding cluster and government
- Royal Caribbean Cruises
- STX Finland – Turku shipyard and the group
I write this post in the evening of 22. November 2012. I have no insider information but I’ve kept my eyes and ears open and pulled all strings together. I’m quite certain, that RCCL will order the third Oasis class ship from STX Finland Turku shipyard. The announcement of that will take place in the late November or early December. These are not horsemen’s information offices latest but a logical chain of reasoning. I’m rather interested to hear if there is something more into it, we are living interesting times.
Today’s news have been good for the Finnish maritime cluster. German Cruise operator, TUI Cruises has announced to redeem their option for the second vessel from Turku shipyard. Today was the day when the first plates of steel were cut on the shipyard for the third vessel of TUI fleet, the first new build, called Mein Schiff 3, “My Ship 3”. Excellent timing, I have to say. According to their statement and earlier knowledge, the first vessel will enter service in May 2014. The second new building, which has not been named yet, will enter service in April 2015.