Rumors abound about the possible delay of NCL’s F3, or even a cancellation of the order being built at Aker Yards in France.
Executives at Aker Yards declined to comment on the reported disagreement between the yard and NCL that may hold-up construction of the 150,000-ton ship.
NCL sent a statement to Cruise Industry News saying: “NCL Corporation Ltd., in response to reports that one of its subsidiaries may be involved in a contractual dispute with Aker Yards S.A. of France regarding a shipbuilding contract, will not comment on commercial or legal disputes.” The statement implies that there is a commercial or legal dispute, however.
NCL previously cancelled an option for a third F3 ship.
Both Aker Yards and NCL have had management and ownership shake-ups recently. The private-equity group Apollo Management purchased half of NCL from Star Cruises last year and took control of the line’s board. NCL’s CEO and President Colin Veitch has recently been moved out of the day-to-day operations of NCL, but given responsibility for newbuildings. Kevin Sheehan, CFO, has also been named president.
At Aker, Yrjo Julin,who was CEO, stepped aside last year after what the shipbuilder called disappointing results. Meanwhile, Korea-based STX has acquired more than 90 percent of Aker this year and taken control of the company.
Several Websites have reported the dispute and potential delay of the ship, but none have had definitive evidence.