Cruise line Royal Caribbean is reviewing its &£4m advertising account ahead of promoting next year’s sailings. Incumbent Mitchell Patterson Grime Mitchell was not asked to repitch for the business.
The review is being overseen by director of sales, marketing and operations Pete Williams. The shortlist is believed to include Walsh Trott Chick Smith, Conrad Advertising, Positive Thinking, Partners BDDH and Scholz & Friends London.
Positive Thinking was appointed to handle Royal Caribbean’s European direct marketing work in January (MW January 17).
The review is understood not to affect media, which is split between John Ayling & Associates and Walker Media.
For the past year, Royal Caribbean has been locked in a battle with US rival Carnival Corporation to buy P&O Princess. Carnival made a hostile bid for the company following Royal Caribbean’s initial offer. The process has been tied up in regulatory scrutiny for several months. The US Federal Trade Commission has now cleared a merger for P&O Princess with either suitor and talks have been opened with Carnival.
The maiden voyage of Island Cruises – Royal Caribbean’s joint venture with First Choice to target a younger market – is the subject of a television fly-on-the-wall documentary on ITV1, called Cruise Ship.