Nearly one year ago, Princess and Royal Caribbean agreed to merge, with Royal Caribbean's chairman slated to run the combined entity. Carnival launched a hostile takeover bid for Princess soon after, which analysts agreed was worth more to Princess shareholders than the original deal with Royal Caribbean. Because the deals involved the 3 largest companies in the cruise industry, any merger was subject to review and approval by regulatory agencies in the US and in Europe, so the cruise lines filed their proposals and waited.
This week, in a 3-2 vote, the FTC wrapped up its 10-month investigation with a decision that neither of the unions would create an anticompetitive environment. The European Commission had already given its approval. With regulatory hurdles now cleared, Princess shareholders are scheduled to vote next month on whether to proceed with the Royal Caribbean merger. Most analysts expect the shareholders will vote against that merger, which will clear the path for a vote on a Carnival buyout in December. There may be more twists and turns in this road, but Carnival clearly has the inside track at this stage.
Post Edited (10-14-02 15:31)
__________________ Ready to Steer towards another cruise
Historically whenever any line has merged with CCL they have retained thier individuality and with little changes outwardly. Example, HAL, Costa, Cunard, Windstar, Seaborne. RCI has historically done much to change the entire concept and demografics of the lines they have taken over. Example, Celebrity. What will actually happen remains to be seem but one can learn from history usually.
Community Staff Leader
I agree with you on that. I haven't seen any changes on HAL since CCL took over and I haven't been on the others.
Sometimes changes are necessary though to enhance the product or manipulate the product for better profitability. Is this the case with Princess? Or should CCL or RCI leave it alone because it is doing just fine as it is?
I agree with Jim, too. When I sailed with Costa on the Atlantica, I sat with a couple that had been on many Costa cruises and they said the only difference they could see was the slide by the pool! Of course, the Atlantica is like some of the newer Carnival ships in design but the overall cruise experience was still totally Costa according to them.