Regency Cruises and Rainbow Cruises have completed their long-awaited merger in which Rainbow has acquired 100 percent ownership of Regency, paying shareholders $1.95 for each of their shares in the cruise line. In the process, Rainbow has also taken Regency private. Regency was the first cruise line to go public in 1984.

Jack Chatham, Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing, said that it was a "friendly acquisition" and he forsaw no changes in management. Instead, he said, Regency may add three to four more ships to its fleet during the next several years.

Rainbow is an affiliate of the Greek Lelakis Group, which owns two of the ships that Regency operates under lease agreements, and also owns Starlite Cruises. Prior to the merger, Rainbow owned 33 percent of Regency's shares.

According to Regency's annual report for 1992, there were 23.2 million shares issued and outstanding. By acquiring 67 percent of these for $1.95 per share, this newsletter estimates that Rainbow paid approximately $30 million for Regency Cruises.

Also in the 1992 annual report, Regency reported cash and cash equivalents of $34.2 million and total current assets of $48.9 million plus property, equipment and so-called other assets at $16.5 million for total assets of $65.4 million.

Current liabilities and long term debt were listed at $28 million. In its presumably last public financial report, Regency reported a loss of $1.72 million on revenues of $29.6 million in its first quarter ended March 31, 1993, compared to a loss of $1.67 million on revenues of $28.2 million in the same period last year.

William Schanz, Chairman of Regency, said that improved load factors, together with commissions received from managing the Regent Rainbow, helped improve first-quarter revenues over last year. But higher charter fees, fuel costs and general and administrative expenses offset revenue gains.

A company spokesperson said fuel costs had increased 29 percent over the year before. In addition were the legal costs related to the merger of Regency and Rainbow.