Explora Journeys names new Chief Commercial Officer

MSC Group promotes brand veteran Achille Staiano to luxury brand

Explora Journeys has tapped Achille Staiano as its Chief Commercial Officer based at its headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland.

Staiano joins the luxury travel brand of the MSC Group from sister company MSC Cruises where most recently he was SVP Global Sales, also based in Geneva. He will report to Explora Journeys’ CEO Michael Ungerer.

Achille has worked for the MSC Group for nearly 30 years and this appointment demonstrates the commitment of the Group in developing and investing in talent from within the organisation. Joining MSC in 1994, Staiano spent the first 11 years in MSC’s shipping container business in Naples, Italy and New York where he undertook a variety of senior commercial roles.

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He moved to MSC Cruises in 2004 and helped to shape the line’s ambitious global sales strategy to become the third largest cruise brand worldwide and saw the fleet nearly double in size over just six years with 22 vessels in service. In his new role at Explora Journeys, Achille will play a key role in the brand’s next phase of growth, having seen the successful launch of EXPLORA I in July this year.

Aboard MSC World Europa ahead of her christening in Doha last November, LATTE snapped Achille Staiano (right) alongside MSC Cruises' CEO, Gianni Onorato; Chair, Lynne Clarke; PR & Comms Manager AU/NZ, Leisa Chell and Executive Chairman, Pierfrancesco Vago.

“Achille’s in-depth knowledge of sales, global distribution channels and revenue management within the maritime industry are tremendous assets to have as we continue to establish our new brand in the luxury travel sector,” CEO Ungerer said. “He will play a pivotal role in the future growth of our business as more ships join our fleet and our capacity expands.

“This appointment demonstrates the development opportunities that are open to our people within MSC Group and I am pleased to have Achille bring his extensive expertise to our senior leadership team,” Ungerer said.

On his appointment, Staiano, said, “I have been a part of the MSC family since I was 19 years old and I am proud of the constant growth that I have experienced. My new role with Explora Journeys is an exciting challenge and I look forward to contributing to the continued global growth and success of the brand in the luxury travel sector.”

Norbert Stiekema, who worked as CCO at Explora Journeys since March will continue to work for the Cruise Division of the MSC Group in a senior commercial role.

EXPLORA I is currently sailing in Northern Europe. EXPLORA II will enter service in summer 2024 and liquefied natural gas-powered ships EXPLORA III and EXPLORA IV will join the fleet in 2026 and 2027 respectively.

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