MIAMI, Oct. 6 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. (RCL)
announced today that it had agreed to sell its 50 percent interest in Island
Cruises to First Choice Holidays Ltd., the other 50 percent owner in the joint
venture and a subsidiary of British-based tour operator TUI Travel PLC (TUI).
As part of the transaction, RCL and TUI agreed to an early termination of the
charter of Island Star, one of two ships in the Island Cruises fleet. RCL is
the owner of Island Star and had chartered it to Island Cruises.
The deal is subject to regulatory approval in Ireland. RCL will also
recognize a small gain on the sale of its interest in Island Cruises and the
early termination of the Island Star charter.
"We thank TUI for their efforts and cooperation throughout the life of the
joint venture. Island Cruises has been a rewarding investment for us, but
over the past year our priorities have shifted," said Richard D. Fain,
chairman and chief executive officer of Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. "We
believe by focusing on developing and expanding the Royal Caribbean
International and Celebrity Cruises brands in the U.K. we will be better able
to serve our customers and create value for our shareholders. This belief has
been strengthened by the success of the inaugural season of Independence of
the Seas, which has served the U.K. market from Southampton, U.K., since it
entered service in May 2008," Fain added.
Upon its return in April 2009, RCL plans to redeploy the Island Star to
Pullmantur Cruises, its Spanish brand. "Redeploying the Island Star to our
expanding Pullmantur fleet allows us to better serve the strategically
important Spanish market," said Fain.
Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. is a global cruise vacation company that
operates Royal Caribbean International, Celebrity Cruises, Pullmantur, Azamara
Cruises and CDF Croisieres de France. The company has a combined total of 37
ships in service and seven under construction. It also offers unique
land-tour vacations in Alaska, Asia, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Europe
and South America. Additional information can be found on
www.royalcaribbean.com, www.celebrity.com, www.pullmantur.es,
www.azamaracruises.com, www.cdfcroisieresdefrance.com or www.rclinvestor.com.
SOURCE Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd.
CONTACT: Michael Sheehan of Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd.,
/Web site: http://www.royalcaribbean.com