Norwegian Cruise Line Announces a Huge Leadership Change

Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings has announced some major changes amongst its senior leadership, bringing in new heads for NCLH and NCL.

Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings has announced significant changes to its executive leadership team, with Harry J. Sommer set to become the new President and Chief Executive Officer of the company, effective July 1, 2023. 

Sommer will replace the current CEO and President, Frank Del Rio, who has decided to retire and step down from his position and the board of directors effective June 30. The company also announced that David J. Herrera would be Norwegian Cruise Line’s new President, effective April 1, 2023. 

Major Changes at Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings

Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings, the parent company of Norwegian Cruise Line, Oceania Cruises, and Regent Seven Seas Cruises, has announced some major changes in its executive leadership team. 

Harry J. Sommer, the current President and Chief Executive Officer of Norwegian Cruise Line, will become the next President and CEO of Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings, effective July 1, 2023. David J. Herrera, Norwegian Cruise Line’s Chief Consumer Sales and Marketing Officer, will be the cruise line’s new President, effective April 1, 2023.

Harry J. Sommer
Photo Courtesy: Norwegian Cruise Line

The changes come as Norwegian announced that its current President and CEO, Frank Del Rio, has decided to retire. This news surprised many since Del Rio had spent three decades in the cruise business and successfully led the company since 2015. Del Rio will resign as President and the Board of Directors effective June 30.

Harry Sommer, the new NCLH CEO, said the following: “David and I have worked closely together for almost a decade expanding NCL’s global presence and shaping its future. With over 25 years of robust corporate business experience and a strong financial, sales, marketing, and business development background, David is a key contributor to NCL’s success, and I am certain he will continue to guide the NCL brand on an accelerated path forward.”

David J. Herrera Appointed President of Norwegian Cruise Line
David J. Herrera Appointed President of Norwegian Cruise Line (Photo Courtesy: Norwegian Cruise Line)

As Norwegian Cruise Line’s President, David Herrera will be responsible for the overall strategic vision and business plan execution for the brand.

David Herrera: “I am honored and humbled to be given the opportunity to lead the passionate and incredible team at NCL, as well as to continue to work alongside Harry and our stellar leadership group to build on our strong momentum. It is going to be another milestone year for us as we continue the Prima Class rollout, and I am looking forward to leading our team and guests along this exciting journey.”

Strong Leadership At NCLH As Company Looks to the Future

David Herrera is currently NCL’s Chief Consumer Sales and Marketing Officer and has been with NCLH since 2015. In his previous positions within the organization, he served as Senior Vice President of Brand Finance, Strategy, and Consumer Research, President of NCLH China, and was behind the military appreciation program

As Norwegian Cruise Line’s new President, Herrera will be responsible for the overall strategic vision and business plan execution for the brand.

Harry Sommer, the Chief Executive of Norwegian Cruise Line since 2020, will take over as the new CEO of NCLH effective July 1, 2023. With over 30 years of experience, he has played a significant role in itinerary planning, ship design, and onboard guest experiences. Sommer will work closely with Herrera during the transition period to ensure a smooth handover.

“I am incredibly humbled to succeed Frank as this iconic Company’s next President and CEO, and I’m grateful to have the unwavering support of him and the Board to lead the Company as we embark on the next chapter for our storied brands,” Sommer said. 

Del Rio, who spent three decades in the cruise business, has led the company since 2015. Del Rio guided Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings through the global operations pause between 2020 and 2021. He will remain as a senior adviser to the board through 2025.

Frank J. Del Rio
Photo Courtesy: Norwegian Cruise Line

In a statement, the current NCLH CEO and the president said,My heartfelt gratitude goes out to our 39,000 team members around the globe whose innovation, tenacity, and collaboration have strengthened this Company and built the industry’s most passionate and loyal base of cruisers.”

This recent announcement of executive leadership changes at Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings is not the first time the company has undergone significant organizational changes. In December of last year, the company announced the appointment of new presidents for its Regent Seven Seas Cruises and Oceania Cruises brands.

In addition to these leadership changes, Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings also announced a 9% reduction in its shoreside workforce at the time, which the company called a “rightsizing” to align with its strategic priorities.

With all brands expanding further set to launch and new leadership in place, NCLH is well-positioned to continue its growth and success in the years to come. The company has also announced several design changes to the Prima class of ships, and Regent Seven Seas and Oceania Cruises are launching new ships soon.

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