P&O sells Artemis to Artania Shipping

P&O Cruises has sold its 45,000-ton, 1,196-passenger ship Artemis to MS Artania Shipping for an undisclosed sum.

The deal will be concluded on October 6 but P&O Cruises will charter back the ship until it ends its scheduled programme of cruises on April 12 2011.

P&O Cruises confirmed two weeks ago that it was in talks with an undisclosed buyer.

P&O Cruises managing director Carol Marlow said the cruiseline has additional capacity joining the fleet next year. She said: “That means there is growth for the brand, so we decided to accept this offer.”

Next April P&O Cruises is taking delivery of the 3,100-passenger ship Azura.

Artania will charter the ship – the smallest in P&O’s fleet – to German tour operator Phoenix Reisen.

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