Walt Disney plans to extend its business by adding two new ships to its cruise division. The Disney Cruise Line currently operates four cruise ships.
Bob Iger, the Chief Executive Officer of The Walt Disney Company, told the shareholders about the plan of adding two new ships at the company’s annual meeting on Thursday March 3 in Chicago. The company also released a statement according to which it already has signed a memorandum of agreement with a German shipyard named the Meyer Werft shipyard.
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The new ships will enter service in 2021 and 2023 and they will be approximately 135,000 gross tonnes – slightly bigger than the two newly added Disney Cruise Line vessels – the Disney Fantasy and Disney Dream. Both of these recently added ships have nearly 1250 guest staterooms so the upcoming ships are likely to accommodate more passengers.
The Disney Magic and the Disney Wonder, the two ships with which the company started its journey, are only 85,000 tonnes each – much smaller than the newly added ones.
Since 2011, the number of international cruise passengers has increased by nearly 12%. The world’s largest cruise line operator Carnival published its industry data that reveals that 23 million passengers travelled in cruise ships last year. The demand for cruise tours and trips has increased all over the world, especially in Asia.
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Just like other cruise operators, Disney is also expanding its fleet to meet the increased demand. Mr Iger said that adding more ships to their line would allow them to entertain more families at sea and take them to magical destinations across the world.
The Disney Cruise Line started its journey with two ships in 1998.