Thursday, February 11, 2010

Asset Management Exec to Head Silversea Cruises

Call me skeptical, but today Silversea Cruises announced that Enzo Visone has been named Executive Chairman of the Board of Silversea Cruises. Prior to this assignment, Mr. Visone was the CEO of an asset management company in Milan, Italy.  Prior to that he spent years at the head of Campari, the liquor company.

Manfredi Lefebvre, on the other hand, announced that he "will now have more time to dedicate to other business interests and philanthropic projects for which I will also avail myself of Enzo Visone's support, without distancing myself from the core business that is Silversea Cruises". 

When "The Man" gets out of the business (for charity, no less) and a number cruncher comes in there is a message.  Whether the message is the lenders (interim or permanent) want someone to have a tighter fiscal control (or just to have "their man" watching the store) is unclear.  But what is clear is that the new head of Silversea knows little, if anything, about the cruise industry.  (Compare, by contrast, Prestige Cruise Holdings placing Frank Del Rio, a man with great knowledge and a vision, at the head of its cruise businesses.)

As I have been saying, things at Silversea are not all smooth sailing.  Hopefully the move, if not unnerving, will be a good one.