It's a done deal: Silversea joins Royal Caribbean family, Project Invictus announced

Silversea's Manfredi Lefebvre d'Ovidio, left, and Royal Caribbean's Richard Fain shook on the deal when it was announced June 14 Silversea's Manfredi Lefebvre d'Ovidio, left, and Royal Caribbean's Richard Fain shook on the deal when it was announced June 14

Silversea Cruises has officially joined the family of Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. with RCL's acquisition of a two-thirds stake in the luxury line after receiving regulatory approval.

Project Invictus

In tandem, the companies announced Project Invictus, a multi-year initiative to take Silversea's ultra-luxury offerings to the next level.

RCL's investment unites two leading players in the cruise industry and fills out its portfolio of brands across all key market segments.

'A dynamite combination'

'This is a dynamite combination and we can't wait to work with Manfredi (Lefebvre d'Ovidio, executive chairman), Roberto (Martinoli, CEO) and the entire team as together we take Silversea to the next level,' RCL chairman and CEO Richard Fain said.

Regulators green-lighted Royal Caribbean's purchase of a 66.7% equity stake in Silversea for $1bn and the assumption of about $500m in debt based on an enterprise value of approximately $2bn. Lefebvre will remain executive chairman of Silversea and retain a 33.3% stake. The plan was first announced June 14.

'This partnership enables us to realize our vision of being the uncontested leader in ultra-luxury cruising and expedition [cruising], taking our guests to more than 1,000 destinations aboard some of the world's most luxurious vessels,' Lefebvre said.

Product upgrades and ship revitalizations

Project Invictus enhancements will 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,' Martinoli said.

The first Invictus enhancements will begin rolling out on Silver Muse Aug. 19 when an upgraded champagne and caviar offering will be initiated. Immediately thereafter, these and other enhancements will be implemented fleetwide, impacting a wide variety of on-board features and strengthening Silversea's reputation for indulgent, luxurious embellishments.

Silver Whisper and Silver Wind up for 'Musification'

In addition, the planned renovation of Silver Whisper in December will be much more comprehensive than initially anticipated and will include a partial refit of all stateroom. Moreover, Silver Wind will also enter into an enhanced dry dock in December. Both vessels will join the overarching plan for a fleetwide 'Musification,' inspired by the design of flagship Silver Muse, which entered service in 2017. The plan will be completed shortly after with an enhanced dry dock for 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.

JP Morgan Securities acted as a financial adviser to RCL and served as the lead arranger for the debt financing for the transaction.

Posted 31 July 2018

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Anne Kalosh

Editor, Seatrade Cruise News & Senior Associate Editor Seatrade Cruise Review