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How the Norwegian-Prestige organization shakes out, as told by Kevin Sheehan

New shared services team will cover some areas across the Norwegian Cruise Line, Oceania Cruises and Regent Seven Seas Cruises brands
Some key people are gaining wider responsibilities, while others will have a narrower focus but a broader scope of brands. Some people are moving up, and others are leaving. In an interview with Seatrade Insider, Kevin Sheehan, president and ceo of Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings, explained how the organization is structured following the acquisition of Prestige Cruises International.

Sheehan said the deal had gone smoothly and on schedule, 'exactly as we had communicated.' He confirmed the promised $25m in synergies were achieved 'and we'll be benefiting from that from Day 1.'

Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings will have a shared services team covering a number of areas across the Norwegian Cruise Line, Oceania Cruises and Regent Seven Seas Cruises brands. Drew Madsen is president and chief operating officer of Norwegian, Frank Del Rio continues as ceo of Prestige, and Kunal Kamlani as president and chief operating officer of Oceania and Regent.

Former Prestige cfo Jason Montague has the new job of evp integration management, working closely with Sheehan. And Norwegian cfo Wendy Beck adds corporate oversight for technology and legal, in addition to her prior areas of finance, accounting and purchasing. Newbuilding at Norwegian (svp Christer Karlsson) continues reporting to Sheehan, as will any future Prestige newbuildings (evp Robin Lindsay) after Seven Seas Explorer. That ship remains under Del Rio's oversight.

Lindsay is 'a solid guy. He'll be working with us forever, hopefully, and will be involved in other unnamed projects,' Sheehan said.

In the newly created shared services group, Norwegian's Mike Flesch becomes evp shipboard operations, overseeing 'everything that happens on the ships,' as Sheehan put it. To his prior hotel operations duties, Flesch adds nautical and technical operations as well as on-board revenue. Executives like svp Svein Sleipnes (marine operations) and svp Brian Swensen (technical operations and refurbishment) now report to him, not to Sheehan, as before.

Crane Gladding will be svp passenger services for the group, responsible for reservations, air/sea and customer relations—but giving up his previous revenue management duties. Under Gladding will be the three separately branded reservations teams, and vp Vivian Ewart will focus on guest services and training.

Colin Murphy was promoted from vp destination and strategic development for Norwegian to svp destination and port operations for the shared services group. He will run destination services such as shore excursions and other guest experiences while also handling negotiations with destinations. He continues to lead Norwegian's Harvest Caye, Belize, development.

John McGirl, who recently joined Norwegian as svp human resources with responsibility for shipboard and shoreside personnel—succeeding George Chesney, who's retiring—assumes HR duties for the Prestige companies, as well. McGirl will help reinforce Sheehan's emphasis on the importance of the crew. 'He's a superstar. He's going to be a breath of fresh air,' Sheehan said, adding his appreciation to Chesney for 'a great job.'

Another shared services area is international sales, to be led by Andy Stuart as evp international, covering the three brands. Prestige vice chairman Bob Binder, who has led international for Oceania and Regent, will be staying on full-time for the next six to eight months to ensure a smooth transition, Sheehan said.

Stuart will also oversee meetings, incentives and corporate events for the group.

At the Norwegian brand, president Madsen takes over revenue management, now led by svp Chad Berkshire, formerly vp finance. Andy Stuart, who was evp global sales and passenger services, is now evp sales for the brand (in addition to his shared services role as evp international). 'He's going to be back heading sales,' Sheehan said. As for svp sales Camille Olivere's exit, Sheehan said 'She's done a great job,' and her position is not going to be filled since Stuart will cover it.

For the two Prestige brands, Howard Sherman continues as evp revenue management and Harry Sommer as svp marketing.

At Oceania, Nikki Upshaw, vp field sales, was promoted to svp sales. Michael Hirsch, who was svp sales, is retiring. James Rodriguez, svp national/key accounts, is leaving. At Regent, Randall Soy will continue to lead sales, now as svp.

Norwegian occupies a pair of big buildings at Corporate Center Drive in Miami, while Prestige and its two brands have three floors nearby in Doral. There's not enough space to move everybody into the Norwegian headquarters, so hasn't been decided how executives and personnel will be distributed, according to AnneMarie Mathews, vp public relations.

Mathews, by the way, continues reporting directly to Sheehan in the new organization, and Jason Lasecki, who handles PR for Oceania and Regent as senior director, will now report to Mathews, Sheehan said.