AS Americas Federal Trade Commission (FTC) finally cleared all bids for P&O Princess last week, investors in the British cruise company have breathed a sigh of relief. Surely this would be the beginning of the end of an almost year-long tussle for their company?
Unfortunately not. In reality, clearance from the FTC has merely set the ball rolling for a wave of new negotiations which should have begun months ago and will now stretch on for months to come.
With four regulators US, EU, UK and Germany having cast their eye over either Royal Caribbeans proposal for a dual listed company (DLC) and/or Carnivals proposed hostile bid, all negotiations drew to a temporary halt at the start of the year to let the regulatory process run its course.
The FTCs decision has now brought that silence to an end, with Princess already talking to Carnival about the possibility of creating a DLC. For Royal Caribbean, however, there is little left to discuss. Having hinted that it …