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Fincantieri Delivers Third Cruise Ship in July as Profits Rebound

Fincantieri rebounds to profitability in 2021
The new Rotterdam was delivered to Holland America Line (Fincantieri)

Published Jul 30, 2021 3:51 PM by The Maritime Executive

Fincantieri is continuing its strong rebound after the devastating effects of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 and the extended shutdowns across parts of Italy that impacted operations. The shipbuilder announced a return to profitability and an improving outlook as it also delivered the third new cruise completed in July after delivering seven ships from six shipyards in the first half of 2021.

Yesterday, July 29, Fincantieri started the handover process for the Rotterdam, a 99,500 gross ton cruise ship completed for Carnival Corporation’s Holland America Line. It is the fourteenth cruise ship Fincantieri has built for the brand starting with the Statendam in 1993. With accommodations for 2,668 passengers, the new Rotterdam becomes the flagship of the Holland America Line and the third Pinnacle class cruise ship Fincantieri built for the brand. The delivery was completed on July 30, and the Rotterdam is scheduled to begin passenger operations with a transatlantic crossing departing American on October 20, 2021, to Fort Lauderdale, Florida, where it will then begin its maiden season in the Caribbean.

After delays in production due to the lockdown and restrictions in 2020, Fincantieri has been catching up on the delivery of cruise ships that began construction before the pandemic. On July 2, in a dual ceremony, they delivered the Valiant Lady, the second cruise ship to Richard Branson’s Virgin Voyages.  At the same time, the Resilient Lady, the third cruise ship for Virgin Voyages was also floated out and moved to the outfitting dock at the Sestri Ponente shipyard near Genoa.

Also in July, Fincantieri delivered the MSC Seashore to MSC Cruises. At 170,400 gross tons, it is the largest passenger ship ever built in Italy and one of the world’s largest cruise ships. At 1,112 feet in length, the ship can accommodate 5,877 passengers. Fincantieri also has a sister ship under construction at the Monfalcone shipyard due to come into service in winter 2022.

In addition to the large cruise ships, Fincantieri is also making process with the smaller cruise ships and expedition ships being built in Italy and at Vard in Norway. Two smaller cruise ships were among those delivered in the first half of the year and one more, the Silver Dawn, is scheduled for delivery late in 2021 along with two expedition ships from Vard.

As part of the recovery for the company, Fincantieri highlighted that new orders in 2021 have remained stable with 2020. They recorded approximately $2 billion in orders across the company in the first half of 2021 including naval ships and infrastructure projects. While there were no new cruise ship construction orders, across the company they have orders for 93 ships to be delivered out to 2029 as well as 18 soft orders pending confirmation or financing.

Shipbuilding led the rebound in the first half of 2021 reporting a 32.5 percent increase in revenues. Net of asbestos and COVID-related extraordinary items, Fincantieri rebounded to positive net income of approximately $8.3 million for the first half of the year. Total revenues were up by nearly a third topping $3.5 billion. 

Offsetting the lack of new cruise ship orders, the company reported wins including becoming prime contractor for six frigates for the Indonesian Navy. Fincantieri Marinette Marine also received confirmation for a second vessel from the U.S. Navy.

Fincantieri expects to build on the strengths of the first half and confirmed its financial guidance for 2021 calling for revenues to increase by 25 percent and despite increasing commodity prices the company still expects a seven percent EBITDA margin for the year.