Cruise & Ferry Review - Spring/Summer 2021

4 3 Pierfrancesco Vago attributes much of MSC Cruises’ success to the fact that it is a family company with family values presented the nine main pillars of our protocol that is detailed in a 750-page document to various parties – we freely shared our perspective with everyone for the benefit of the entire industry.” In the early months of the pandemic, opinions about PCR testing, sanitation measures, best practices for mitigating the impact of the virus and other factors changed numerous times as new data was collected. Consequently, as MSC Cruises battled to build its defences, each process iteration ate into precious cash flow. “The capacity of our shareholders to understand and accept investment proposals during the crisis has been remarkable,” says Vago. “A practical example of the hardware investments we’ve made is the installation of an air treatment system for MSC Seashore, which will be delivered this summer, to sterilise all of the air that’s taken in and circulated around the ship with ultraviolet light. The air is circulated once and then replaced by newly treated air, killing 99 per cent of all airborne bacteria.” Vago attributes MSC Cruises’ success over the past 12 months to the fact that it is, first and foremost, a family company with family values. “We’re exceedingly professional, we have high standards, and our management team is very hands-on,” he says. “In today’s world these attributes are paramount. We’ve always been a very open and progressive company with a humble mentality. Unlike other big businesses, we don’t seek to continually reinvent ourselves and become investors in everything – we focus on shipping. That’s what we understand and that’s what we’re good at. We do have other business interests, like logistics and terminals, but they’re all as a consequence of our core shipping trade.” Being a family company with a dedicated team and focused industry expertise has yielded a business environment that breeds excellence in everything MSC Cruises does. “Our unity of purpose and inherent trust in each other leads to quick and intelligent decision-making and that makes us flexible and agile,” says Vago. “We don’t have to convince shareholders about the merits of the decisions we want to make because, in a family business, we “Cruising has a really exciting future – for passengers, for the industry and for MSC Cruises”