Hurtigruten is one of Norway’s leading transport and tourism companies, offering authentic, year-round travel experiences along the Norwegian coast and beyond on its 14-strong fleet of ships.
Originally established by the government as a means of linking the south of the country to the inaccessible parts of the north, the earliest ships transported cargo and local passengers between ports.
Today, Hurtigruten leverages this vessel schedule and infrastructure to offer cruises to an international customer base along the Norwegian Coast. It also has a fast-growing business offering Arctic and Antarctic expedition cruises, and trips with Spitsbergen Travel, the largest tour operator on the island of Spitsbergen.
We had been actively reviewing opportunities in the Scandinavian leisure space for many years and, as part of this initiative, began following Hurtigruten in 2011. We spent a significant amount of time building our understanding of the business and the wider market, as well as fostering relationships with the management team.
Our discussions over time culminated in us, alongside our partners Periscopus AS and Home Capital AS, taking the business private in December 2014.
What we've done
We were attracted to the investment in Hurtigruten by the operational transformation potential, capital expenditure opportunities and potential for significant expansion of the Explorer business. We have worked with management to implement a number of operational and commercial initiatives, which have resulted in significant growth. We also undertook a significant capital expenditure programme, refurbishing four Norwegian Coast ships, with two further ones planned, thereby enhancing Hurtigruten’s product offering and customer experience onboard.
In addition, the Explorer business has been transformed through new ship allocation to its routes, global marketing outreach and new product development, with sailings in the Artic and the Antarctic. The capacity of the Explorer business has trebled and will grow further with two additional ships purchased, positioning it strongly to take advantage of the significant growth in global demand for adventure travel.