Jason Liberty succeeds Richard Fain as CEO of Royal Caribbean
CFO Jason Liberty will succeed him as CEO and join the board, which Fain will continue to chair.
The third longest-serving CEO of the current S&P 500, Fain’s career is defined by the innovations he has championed involving all aspects of cruising – from revolutionary ship designs and sustainability efforts to revolutionary technologies and features that have enriched the experience for millions of passengers.
Under Fain’s leadership, the Royal Caribbean Group has introduced new and distinct categories of ships, with a diverse range of amenities and experiences that have transformed the nature of cruising. These transformational ships include the Sovereign, Voyager and Oasis classes of Royal Caribbean International; Celebrity Cruises’ Solstice and Edge classes; the next Royal Caribbean International Icon class to be introduced in 2023; and Silversea Cruises’ Project Evolution, a hybrid propulsion vessel.
Fain, in collaboration with Liberty, will continue its involvement in the Group’s shipbuilding program.
Liberty joined the Royal Caribbean Group in 2005 and held several financial, strategic and operational positions before becoming CFO in 2013. His operational roles have broadened over the years and have gone well beyond the responsibilities normally associated with a financial director.
He is also responsible for Silversea, the Group’s joint ventures with TUI Cruises and Hapag-Lloyd Cruises, as well as the Group’s strategy, technology, supply chain, port operations and legal functions.
Naftali Holtz becomes CFO
Naftali Holtz will become CFO when Liberty assumes the role of CEO. Holtz is currently SVP Finance for the Group, responsible for business planning and analysis, capital and revenue, deployment planning, risk management and treasury.
He joined two years ago after a dozen years with Goldman Sachs, eventually as mManaging Director, Head of the Accommodation and Leisure Investment Bank.
Support during the pandemic
Fain led the company through the global pandemic and was a driving force behind the creation of the Healthy Sail Panel.
“Richard has been a visionary leader, who has made countless and remarkable contributions to our business and our industry,” said Bill Kimsey, Senior Director of the Board of Directors. “More recently, his management during the COVID pandemic made him one of the great CEOs of his generation. The cruise line community and all of us in the business owe him a debt of gratitude.
Fain said he and the board had developed a careful succession planning process for when he decided it was time to step down.
“There are no words to express my admiration and appreciation for the members of the Royal Caribbean Group, who have been the real engines of our success, and my deep appreciation for the support and guidance of the Board of Directors in the past. good times and bad throughout this long period of sustained growth, ”he said.
‘The good moment’
Fain added that with most of the Group’s vessels in operation, a full return to cruising approaching and the Group’s brands under the leadership of exceptional CEOs, the time has come to step down.
“Given the depth and breadth of our leadership and the positive outlook for our business, this is an appropriate time to step back and let Jason take over,” said Fain. “He is a very versatile and strategic leader, who has been integral to all aspects of the company’s achievements and performance.”
Fain also said that Liberty and Holtz “have done an exceptional job in arranging more than $ 12 billion in funding during this difficult time.” They have done this in a remarkably careful and methodical manner, which will serve us well in the years to come. ‘
“A superbly qualified leader endowed with principles”
“Our success as a company relies heavily on our culture and the values we hold dear,” Fain. continued. “Jason embodies these values, and I know he will strive to develop them in this ever-changing world. I could not be happier than such a highly skilled and principled leader succeeding me as CEO. Jason will lead the Group to new heights. ‘
The unanimous choice of the board
Kimsey noted that Liberty has played “an important role in every major initiative the company has undertaken for many years, and he has been instrumental in managing the pandemic. The Board of Directors enthusiastically and unanimously chose him to be the next CEO of Royal Caribbean Group. ‘