Aqua plots coastal cruising
AQUA Expeditions founder Francesco Galli Zugaro has confirmed a major expansion program, with US private equity firm Bison Capital to provide $28 million in new funding.
Zugaro founded the company 10 years ago with Aqua’s upmarket river cruise product on the Amazon River in Peru, and expanded into Indochina with the Aqua Mekong luxury vessel.
“I am thrilled that after a decade of changing the face of river cruising on both the Amazon and Mekong Rivers, we will extend our footprint to coastal cruising in additional soft adventure destinations,” he said.
The expansion will see a 150% increase in the size of the Aqua Expeditions fleet, Zugaro added.
He will remain Aqua’s majority shareholder and “fully in charge of the company’s destiny and growth,” with the first details of new vessels and itineraries to be announced later this month.
Zugaro said Aqua had earned a reputation for bringing 5-star luxury to river cruising in remote areas, and “the identical level of lavishness and adventure” would feature in the new offerings.
“It is a tribute to the confidence in our brand shown by our guests and travel agency partners that we are able to make this significant move,” he concluded.