A strong demand for cruises and the delivery of its latest ship, the Norwegian Bliss, pushed Miami-based Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings’ earnings over the company’s earlier estimates.

The company’s net income of USD 226.7 million or earnings per share (EPS) of USD 1.01 for the three months ended June 30, 2018, compared to a net income of USD 198.5 million or EPS of USD 0.87 reported in the same period in the prior year. Total revenue for the period increased 13.2% to USD 1.5 billion from USD 1.3 billion seen a year earlier.

These increases were primarily attributed to strong organic pricing growth across all core markets along with an increase in capacity days due to the addition of Norwegian Joy to the fleet in the second quarter of 2017 and Norwegian Bliss to the fleet in the second quarter of 2018, partially offset by three scheduled dry-docks during the period.

“Global consumer cruise demand shows no signs of slowing as evidenced by solid organic growth and the hugely successful introduction of Norwegian Bliss, whose record-breaking performance surpassed our high expectations. The strong demand environment is expected to continue driving higher pricing in the back half of the year,” said Frank Del Rio, president and chief executive officer of Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd.

NCL expects to generate record earnings for full year 2018 and has increased its outlook above the high end of its previous guidance range, with adjusted EPS now expected to be in the range of USD 4.70 to USD 4.80.

“We have a high level of confidence and strong conviction in our outlook for 2019 and beyond as demonstrated by our recent global redeployment initiatives, the bolstering of our measured growth profile with the confirmation of two additional Leonardo Class ships for delivery in 2026 and 2027, as well as the opportunistic execution of USD 200 million in share repurchases in the quarter, bringing the year-to-date total for share repurchases to over USD 450 million,” Del Rio concluded.

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