New MSC Cruises flagship confirmed
Monday 26, July 2010
MSC Cruises and STX France has announced the conclusion of the legal process that finalizes the order of MSC Fantastica, a new ‘Fantasia’ class cruise ship (technically called U32), and the 12th in the MSCCruises fleet.
Following a press conference in St-Nazaire this morning, French President Nicolas Sarkozy visited the STX France ship yards together with Mr Gianluigi Aponte, President of MSC, Mr Piefrancesco Vago, MSC Cruises CEO and Mr Hardeley, General Manager of STX France. The official delegation also included Christine Lagarde, French Minister of Economic Affairs and Christian Estrosi, Minister of Industry.
The process began on Monday 1st March with the signature of a Letter of Intent but, given the various legal and financial interlocutors involved, took some time to complete.
An important factor in the success of the project was the financial backing provided by French financial institutions, and especially by Coface, the French Export Credit Agency, making it possible for the vessel to be delivered as required by MSC Cruises by the end of spring 2012.
"We are very pleased that this important contract with MSC is now confirmed," said Jacques Hardelay, General Manager of STX France, “and we look forward to continuing the long-standing relationship between the teams of MSC Cruises and STX France for the successful delivery of this magnificent vessel”.
Pierfrancesco Vago, CEO of MSC Cruises, added: “We are delighted at the confirmation of this important investment, a sign of the success of our ambitious growth strategy, and we would like to thank all those who have made it possible. Together with STX France, we are now keen to focus our energies on further enhancing MSC Cruises' leading positioning within the world’s cruise industry. MSC Fantastica will build on the success of the ‘Fantasia’ prototype, appreciated by more and more guests as unique its class thanks to innovate features like the MSC Yacht Club, the ship within a ship offering unprecedented levels of privacy and personalized service.”
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