Hurtigruten Group is knuckling down on its expansion into new markets, and adventure travel, acquiring a 24.9% share in its South American travel partner, Metropolitan Touring.
Last June the Norwegian headquartered group revealed a move into cruising the Galápagos Islands for Hurtigruten Expeditions on the 90-passenger MS Santa Cruz II through an agreement with the Quito-based firm. Hurtigruten has now taken that relationship to the next level with its significant minority stake.
The long-term investment “further demonstrates Hurtigruten Group’s global growth ambitions in the adventure travel market,” the company said.
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“This investment signifies our growth journey and we are delighted to invest in Metropolitan Touring, a proud South American company that mirrors our expedition heritage and sustainability values,” said Daniel Skjeldam, CEO of Hurtigruten Group.
“It is a unique opportunity for us to contribute to a more meaningful partnership, where we can expand quickly, strategically and deliver on our vision for the future together,” Skjeldam remarked.
The strategic partnership broadens Hurtigruten Group’s portfolio of products in iconic, natural destinations, reinforcing its position as a leader in sustainable adventure travel.
Paulina Burbano de Lara, CEO of Metropolitan Touring said “Hurtigruten Group share our passion for the wonders of South America and we are excited by the prospect of this partnership which brings together two companies that have a common long-term vision of our industry’s power to do good in the world.
“As we continue the post-Covid recovery, this announcement will bolster South America’s position as an exciting travel destination on the global stage, bringing its stunning natural and compelling cultural attractions into sharper focus for today’s responsible traveller,” Burbano de Lara added.
Hurtigruten Expeditions is offering year-round expedition cruises, in close cooperation with Metropolitan Touring.
Guests can already explore spectacular land-based South America adventures before or after their voyage, such as the iconic Machu Picchu, the Cotopaxi national park and Quito. The strengthened partnership will broaden opportunities to further expand into more unique land-based programs and excursions, Hurtigruten Group noted.