MSC Cruises announced today that it has now established a direct presence in the market by opening an MSC Cruises office in Shanghai and appointing Helen Huang as its President, Greater China. Huang will be based in Shanghai.

Gianni Onorato, Chief Executive Officer of MSC Cruises, commented: “Following the deployment of MSC Lirica to the shores of China in May of this year, the establishment of a direct operations, commercial as well as representative institutional presence and a management team to lead our effort on the ground was the next natural step in the further development of our business across Greater China. In fact, China is and will constitute going forward a key area of attention for our business and that we will look to serve with our very best ships, as we are in the midst of an industry-unprecedented $10.2 billion, eleven new smart cruise ships to come into service over the next ten years.”

“Helen, whom we happily welcome back to MSC Cruises, is tasked with leading our ability to best serve our trade, institutional and other partners across Greater China as well as the operational and port relations support needs of MSC Lirica and her guests. In addition, she will lead out of Greater China our ambitious growth plan for this highly promising market. It is for this very reason that, for example, MSC Cruises has already long-established itself as the cruise line of choice for Chinese nationals visiting the Mediterranean and Europe – where we are the number one cruise brand also thanks to the most elegant and modern fleet at sea.”

With over twenty years’ experience in the industry, Huang brings with her a profound understanding of the business and extensive experience in senior executive leadership. Before joining MSC Cruises, she was most recently Vice President Corporate Communications, Costa Asia and General Manager, Costa China, from July 2013 to December 2015. Her name was first connected with MSC Cruises from December 2009 to July 2013 as General Manager of Mediterranean Cruise Travel Agency (Shanghai) Co., Ltd, the Joint Venture between MSC Cruises and Shanghai International Port (Group) Co., Ltd. Prior to that, she gained fifteen years of experience working for both the head office of Shanghai International Port (Group) Co., Ltd. and its subsidiaries.