Costa Crociere retains its market-leading position in the buoyant cruise sector: according to figures issued by the European Cruise Council in the annual report of the European Cruise Contribution for the year 2010, the European cruise industry continues to provide a major contribution to Europe’s economy as a whole.
Last year there were 5.5 million European cruisers (a 10% increase compared to 2009), which is approximately 30% of cruise passengers worldwide (18.8 million cruisers), making the cruise industry the only area of the tourism sector that is enjoying substantial growth. The UK has the most cruisers out of the EU countries with 1.6million; followed by Germany (1.2 million), Italy (around 890,000) and Spain (645,000).
In 2010 the European cruise industry also grew in terms of the numbers of passengers departing from European ports: 5.2 million (+7.2%). The overall (direct and indirect) economic impact of the industry on the continent’s economy last year was 35.2 billion euros, including over 14 billion euros of direct spending. The greatest beneficiaries of this direct expenditure were Italy (4.5 billion euros), the UK (approximately 2.6 billion) and Germany (2.3 billion). European shipbuilders continue to play an important part in this expansion: from 2011 to 2013 the continent’s yards will build 23 new cruise ships, with a total investment worth almost 11 billion euros. The economic impact of the cruise industry also contributes very substantially to employment, accounting for around 300,000 jobs in Europe.
“Despite the fact that the economic situation is not the most favorable, European cruising remains a growth industry and continues to play a key role in terms of the creation of wealth and employment. Costa Crociere S.p.A. is the no.1 operator and the driving force in Europe: in 2010 the group’s ships carried more than 2 million guests and generated an economic impact (direct and indirect spending) worth 2.2 billion euros in Italy alone,” commented Costa Crociere S.p.A. President Gianni Onorato.
In this context the Costa Crociere S.p.A. group comprising the historic Costa Cruises trademark (www.costacruise.com), the number one cruise company for the German market Aida Cruises (www.aida.de) and Iberocruceros (www.iberocruceros.com), which operates mainly for the Spanish and Portuguese-speaking markets, has confirmed its leadership in Europe.
The group’s consolidated revenues rose by around 12% in financial year 2010, reaching just under 3 billion euros, while the total number of guests was 2.15 million, representing an increase of 18% compared to the previous financial year. The increase in revenue reinforces Costa Crociere’s position as Italy’s largest travel group.
Costa Crociere S.p.A. is one of Italy’s top 10 most profitable companies and ranks 49th in terms of revenues in Mediobanca’s 2010 survey of more than 3700 Italian enterprises that recorded revenue of at least 50 million euros the previous financial year.
The Costa Crociere group fleet currently has 26 ships in service (14 Costa Cruises, 8 Aida Cruises, 4 Iberocruceros) with another 4 on delivery by 2013 (2 Costa Cruises and 2 Aida Cruises), making it Europe’s largest. The next addition, due for delivery at the end of the month, is the new flagship Costa Favolosa, the 15th member of the Costa Cruises fleet and number 27 for the group. Worth around 510 million euros and weighing in at 114,500 gross tonnage with accommodation for up to 3,800 guests, Costa Favolosa will be the new flagship of the only cruise fleet flying the Italian tricolor. Costa Favolosa will be named in Trieste on 2 July. Her naming event will be a tribute to Italy and it was included in the official celebrations of the 150th anniversary of the of Italian Unification.