Princess Cruises has announced a new deal with retailer Harding. The partnership announced on September 15th envisages that the in-house retail operation now run by Princess for 14 ships will be transferred to the cruise operator.
Princess Cruises sees more commercial opportunities
A partnership with one of the largest cruise lines in the world enables both companies to develop and realize their strategic ambitions. It is also one of the most significant operations that has ever taken place, or as Princess says: “A clear sign of the ambition of both companies to skillfully use the restart as an opportunity to rethink what is possible with retail at sea.”
The plans include the fourteen ships currently in the Princess Fleet and the three ships that are currently either under construction or in planning. Harding will manage the onboard retail operations for all ships, though Princess cruises will continue to be closely involved. In fact, the existing Princess retail team will join the Harding store as part of the transition.
Kelli Coleman, Vice President of Retail at Princess Cruises added: “It feels like a new beginning. Our great industry is rising again, with ever greater confidence and ever greater vision. These are exciting times for all of us in this industry and I can’t wait to get started again. “
Photo credit: VIIIFotografie / Shutterstock.com
Harding impressed with Princess Cruises’ operations
Harding set the tone for the partnership between the retailer and the cruise line a few months ago. According to Natalya Leahy, Princess Cruises Chief Operations Officer, the two parties have a solid cultural bond that will not only extend to the companies, but will also have a positive impact on guests, brands and the team members involved in both companies:
“When Harding approached us a few months ago, we knew they would be a partner with real vision, strong cultural focus, and a proven ability to expand our retail offering. Today’s announcement comes after extensive and detailed discussions about what’s best for our guests, our teammates and our brand partners, and we are confident that Harding will continue the great foundation of our team. “
That message was echoed by James Prescott, the managing director of Harding, who said: “I am delighted to welcome the Princess team to Harding to be part of a new team that delivers the best of the best. I was incredibly impressed with the professionalism, skill, drive and sheer determination of the Princess team as we worked hand in hand on this project.
Photo Via: Princess Cruises
What is harding?
Harding is a cruise operator that has been involved in several cruise partnerships around the world since its inception in the 1930s. The company currently has more than 250 shops on board 62 cruise ships, including 22 cruise lines. The company works with Carnival Cruise Line, Seabourn, Virgin Voyages, Norwegian Cruise Line and Regent Seven Seas and many others.
Neil Harding, President of Harding added: “In my 30 years in cruise retailing, I’ve been fortunate to see some really groundbreaking changes. Today is a milestone in many ways. We really appreciate this project with Princess and are grateful for the trust you have placed in us. “
The resumption of operations for Princess Cruises now includes the Harding retail stores. By the end of November, the shipping company hopes to have at least eight MedallionClass ships in service, including the Majestic Princess, Grand Princess, Ruby Princess, Enchanted Princess, Sky Princess, Regal Princess, Caribbean Princess and Emerald Princess.
On board all of these ships, guests can contactlessly via the Medallion wearables introduced by the cruise line.