First Free Story (1 of 3)Join Skift Pro
Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings, the world’s third-largest cruise company, has reportedly hired investment bank Goldman Sachs to help shore up its finances as it deals with the cruise industry’s standstill amidst the coronavirus crisis.
As Reuters reported on Saturday, the troubled cruise line is considering selling a large stake of the company in what is known as as private investment in public equity (PIPE), among other options. Sources told Reuters no deal was yet certain, and that other financing options were also being explored. Neither Goldman Sachs or Norwegian Cruise Line immediately responded to a request for comment from Skift.
All three of the major cruise lines were left out of the U.S. government’s multi-trillion dollar bailout because none of them are U.S. companies. This has left them in the position of needing to raise cash — and quick — now that their revenue has come to a standstill.
The world’s largest cruise company Carnival Corp. sold an 8 percent stake to Saudi Arabia’s public investment fund and Royal Caribbean secured a $2.2 billion loan in March. All three companies instituted a voluntary suspension of cruises in mid-March. Earlier in April, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention extended its No Sail order to last until late July — though the cruise lines seem to have other ideas about when they will sail again, if not a legal leg to stand on.
Norwegian, which has 28 docked vessels in its fleet, has seen its share price drop nearly 80 percent since the beginning of the year. It also was the subject of a damning report in March from the Miami New Times that the company instructed its customer service representatives to mislead customers about the risks of booking and embarking on a cruise during the coronavirus crisis. The report led to an investigation from Florida’s attorney general.