Genting Hong Kong Buys Nordic Yards
Genting Hong Kong, owner of Star Cruises, Crystal Cruises, and Asian luxury line Dream Cruises, has announced the purchase of Nordic Yards' three shipyards in Stralsund, Warnemunde and Wismar, adding to Genting's stable of in-house shipbuilding capacity.
“The rapid growth of the world cruise industry, especially in China, has led to cruise ship order book reaching an all-time high,” said Tan Sri Lim Kok Thay, Genting's chairman and CEO. “In order to ensure that the Company can build the required number of cruise ships in the next decade for our global fleet expansion, it is strategic that we acquired [these] shipyards.” The firm expects that owning shipyards will take some of the uncertainty out of pricing and delivery schedule for its newbuilds.
Genting bought a majority stake in Lloyd Werft early this year and will integrate the Nordic Yards purchase into a new unit, to be called Lloyd Werft Group. Rumors of the Nordic purchase have been circulating for several weeks, especially since the creation of several new German firms with related names, like Star Cruises Wismar Operations GmbH and Star Cruises Wismar Property GmbH.
Nordic Yards has traditionally focused on specialty vessels, including ro/pax, specialized offshore supply vessels and platform equipment, and wind farm service vessels. Its Wismar and Warnemunde yards have drydock capacity large enough for the biggest cruise ships in the world, and covered building halls to continue work in all weather. Stralsund is smaller, but can still handle vessels to 270 meters. Genting expects that with investment the Lloyd Werft Group will be able to produce several cruise ships and/or megayachts each year.
“With all the yards situated in Germany, a country with a long tradition of efficiency in building high quality and innovative cruise ships and megayachts, the Lloyd Werft Group, with approximately 1,700 experienced management and workers, is well placed to succeed . . . Germany is also where the largest cluster of marine equipment suppliers are located,” said Tan Sri Lim Kok Thay.
Genting reportedly paid $250 million for Nordic Yards.
Nordic Yards said in a statement that it had been examining the cruise sector since 2014 due to deteriorating conditions in its other market segments, and that the sale to Genting would “enable [its] continued existence.” As a condition of sale, all employees will be retained. “It went without saying that every member of the workforce should be kept on and their know-how and experience retained, so that the contribution made by the maritime industry can be safeguarded for the region in the long-term,” said Dr. Herbert Aly, Managing Director of Nordic Yards.