MSC Cruises Names Gianni Onorato CEO

MSC Cruises today announced that Gianni Onorato will become the new Chief Executive Officer of the company, effective Sept. 2, 2013.

Onorato has spent almost 30 years in the industry and has extensive experience in senior executive leadership, serving as President of Costa Crociere for the past nine years.

He graduated from the Istituto Orientale of Naples with a degree in Foreign Languages and Literatures in 1983, and specialized in business administration at SDA Bocconi in Milan and INSEAD in Fontainebleau.

“I am thrilled to have been appointed to this exciting role and I am also particularly excited to move to Geneva, where the MSC Cruises headquarters is based,”  said Onorato. “I will do everything I can to add value to the company and help MSC Cruises maximize its industry-leading position. I look forward to starting work with the management team in this significant moment of the company’s growth.”  

Pierfrancesco Vago will continue to lead the privately held cruise company in the role of Executive Chairman, while scaling up the scope of his duties. From his new position he will also oversee all the other companies of the MSC group that have strategic relevance to the tourism sector.

“Our company has gone through a period of rapid expansion, with ten new ships built in just under ten years, three new prototype classes of ship created and 45 offices opened around the globe. I am confident that the appointment of Gianni will consolidate our management structure, building on its existing strengths and boosting the company’s development plans even further.”

Vago has been driving MSC Cruises since 2003, when a 6 billion euro investment plan was put into place, transforming the company from ‘the new kids on the block’ to the world’s third largest cruise operator.

Onorato will be based in Geneva at the MSC Cruises headquarters. He will report to the MSC Board of Directors and to its Executive Chairman.