Viking Cruises has signed a memorandum of understanding with China Merchants Shekou to form a joint venture focused on building a cruise line with worldwide cruise offerings for the Chinese cruise market.
This will be a wide-ranging partnership covering from product development to sales and marketing. Further, China Merchants Group’s shipbuilding subsidiaries will partner with the joint venture to design and build new ocean cruise ships dedicated to the Chinese market.
Torstein Hagen, Chairman of Viking, gave the following statement about this new cruise line for the China market: “China is a dynamic outbound tourism market, and we are pleased to be partnering with China Merchants Group in this joint venture to drive the development of the cruise industry – we see Viking’s way of cruising less as a trip and more as a lifestyle.
For more than 20 years, we have led the industry in developing a fleet of ships and a range of cruise itineraries that we believe provide guests with the most comfortable and enriching way to explore the world. Our partnership with China Merchants Group will allow us to bring this Viking travel lifestyle to more Chinese travelers more quickly, satisfying the Chinese market’s unmet demand for a greater choice of sophisticated travel.”
Viking currently operates a current fleet of 78 cruise ships, offering scenic cruising on rivers and oceans around the world.
China has been a part of Viking’s destination portfolio since 2003, and since setting up local operations in China in 2016, the company has seen strong momentum in its European river cruise product tailored for Chinese-speaking guests.