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Escaped from scrapping – “Riese von Wismar” experiences historic rescue

The name "Global Dream" will hardly stick, but renaming the ship is certainly the least effort for the workers at the former MV shipyard in the coming months.

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Escaped from scrapping – “Riese von Wismar” experiences historic rescue

The name "Global Dream" will hardly stick, but renaming the ship is certainly the least effort for the workers at the former MV shipyard in the coming months. It is crucial for the approximately 600 employees that they now have prospects for the future.

According to WELT information, insolvency administrator Christoph Morgen has found a buyer for the three-quarters of the cruise ship that has been built. The American company Disney Cruise Line is to take over the giant ship, which currently has space for 9,000 passengers in 2,500 cabins and 2,200 crew members. A press conference is scheduled for this Thursday.

The biggest insolvency case in German shipbuilding since the 1990s has come to a surprisingly good end. The "Global Dream" intended for the Genting Group from Malaysia was the last major part of the insolvency assets of the MV shipyards in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania. The insolvency administrator had previously completed a number of sales.

Until now, the Wismar shipyard went to ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems (TKMS), the Stralsund shipyard to the Hanseatic City of Stralsund, and the Lloyd shipyard in Bremerhaven to Zech

The Meyer shipyard in Papenburg is behind the closure for the 341 meter long cruise ship. The senior boss Bernard Meyer has succeeded in winning the cruise line of the Disney group as an additional customer. The Los Angeles-based Disney company, which is listed on the stock exchange, will probably publish an ad hoc announcement on the purchase of the “Global Dream”. The US cruise giants Disney, Carnival Cruises and Royal Caribbean are all reporting sharp increases in bookings and busy sea voyages following the restrictions imposed by the corona pandemic.

Under the management of the Meyer shipyard from Emsland, the "Global Dream" is now to be converted and further built into a cruise ship for the western tourism market. Above all, the number of guests and cabins is likely to decrease as the Genting Group designed the Global Dream as a casino ship for the Asian market and the gambling industry. How much money the US company Disney is paying for the ship is currently not known. It is also unclear whether the loans from the state of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania and the federal government can be completely replaced via the KfW banking group.

When the purchase was concluded with the Genting Group of entrepreneur Lim Kok Thay, 1.5 billion euros were mentioned as the price for the new building. After that, the ship was about three quarters finished. The cost of the upcoming completion is likely to be several hundred million euros. The interior, the exterior, the control system and the electronics are missing.

The sale also fits in well with the planning for the shipyard in terms of the schedule. According to a rental agreement with the shipyard buyer TKMS, the large ship hall in which the “Global Dream” is currently located will still be available for shipbuilding in 2023. After that, the new building is to leave the hall and be completed on the equipment quay of the shipyard site. After all, the acquirer TKMS does not want to start remodeling the site until 2024 and the construction of submarines a year later. This process gives the approximately 600 shipyard workers who are currently employed in a transfer company the opportunity for almost continuous employment. The same applies to around 100 engineers from the former MV shipyards.

This comparison shows the importance of the deal: if it had not been possible to find a buyer for the "Global Dream", the insolvency administrator would have had to consider selling it as scrap value. The income from this would have been in the low double-digit million euro range - and thus in a similar amount to the effort for towing the cruise ship to a scrapping yard in Turkey.

"Everything on shares" is the daily stock exchange shot from the WELT business editorial team. Every morning from 5 a.m. with the financial journalists from WELT. For stock market experts and beginners. Subscribe to the podcast on Spotify, Apple Podcast, Amazon Music and Deezer. Or directly via RSS feed.

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