9:27 EDT 25 October - Royal Caribbean (RCL) hopes to order a new Oasis-type ship–at 5,400 berths, they’re the biggest cruise vessels in the world–by year’s end. The company’s first Oasis-class ship had a contract price of about $1B back in 2006, but RCL says a new ship should cost less/berth and it doesn’t expect to accept delivery until 2016, giving the company years to build up money. RCL and other cruise lines cooled capacity growth amid the financial crisis, delighting investors with less-emcumbered cash flow. RCL’s plans follows rival Norwegian Cruise’s order of 4,200-berth ship earlier this month, hinting the industry may be coming out of a capacity slumber.
- Joan Solsman, Dow Jones & Company