Commitments and Contingencies
|12 Months Ended
Dec. 31, 2020
|Commitments And Contingencies Disclosure [Abstract]
|Commitments and Contingencies
Ship Construction Contracts
For the Norwegian brand, Project Leonardo will introduce six additional ships, each ranging from approximately 140,000 to 156,300 Gross Tons with approximately 3,300 to 3,550 Berths, with expected delivery dates from 2022 through 2027. For the Regent brand, we have one Explorer Class Ship on order to be delivered in 2023, which will be approximately 55,000 Gross Tons and 750 Berths. For the Oceania Cruises brand, we have orders for two Allura Class Ships to be delivered in 2023 and 2025. Each of the Allura Class Ships will be approximately 67,000 Gross Tons and 1,200 Berths. The impacts of COVID-19 on the shipyards where our ships are under construction (or will be
constructed) have resulted in some delays in expected ship deliveries, and the impacts of COVID-19 could result in additional delays in ship deliveries in the future, which may be prolonged.
The combined contract prices of the nine ships on order for delivery was approximately €7.1 billion, or $8.7 billion based on the euro/U.S. dollar exchange rate as of December 31, 2020. We have obtained export credit financing for the ships on order which is expected to fund approximately 80% of each contract price, subject to certain conditions. We do not anticipate any contractual breaches or cancellation to occur. However, if any such events were to occur, it could result in, among other things, the forfeiture of prior deposits or payments made by us and potential claims and impairment losses which may materially impact our business, financial condition and results of operations.
As of December 31, 2020, minimum annual payments for non-cancelable ship construction contracts with initial or remaining terms in excess of one year were as follows (in thousands):
Subsequent to December 31, 2020, $194.1 million of payments anticipated in 2021 have been deferred and we have a memorandum of agreement in place to finance another $35.2 million.
Port Facility Commitments
As of December 31, 2020, future commitments to pay for usage of certain port facilities were as follows (in thousands):
Our port facilities agreements generally include force majeure provisions that may alleviate an unspecified amount of obligations under minimum guarantees during the COVID-19 pandemic. In 2020, the Company provided the required notice that such provisions were being enacted. Customary practice is to prorate these obligations for the annual period impacted.
The FMC requires evidence of financial responsibility for those offering transportation on passenger ships operating out of U.S. ports to indemnify passengers in the event of non-performance of the transportation. Accordingly, each of our three brands are required to maintain a $32.0 million third-party performance guarantee in respect of liabilities for non-performance of transportation and other obligations to passengers. The guarantee requirements are subject to additional consumer price index-based adjustments.
In addition, our brands have a legal requirement to maintain security guarantees based on cruise business originated from the U.K., and we are required to establish financial responsibility by certain jurisdictions to meet liability in the event of non-performance of our obligations to passengers from those jurisdictions. As of December 31, 2020, we have in place
approximately £39.3 million of security guarantees for our brands as well as a consumer protection policy covering up to £48.3 million. The Company has provided approximately $30.5 million in cash to secure all the financial security guarantees required.
From time to time, various other regulatory and legislative changes have been or may in the future be proposed that may have an effect on our operations in the U.S. and the cruise industry in general.
On March 12, 2020, a class action complaint, Eric Douglas v. Norwegian Cruise Lines, Frank J. Del Rio and Mark A. Kempa, Case No. 1:20-CV-21107, was filed in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida, naming the Company, Frank J. Del Rio, the Company’s President and Chief Executive Officer, and Mark A. Kempa, the Company’s Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, as defendants. Subsequently, two similar class action complaints were also filed in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida naming the same defendants. On July 31, 2020, a consolidated amended class action complaint was filed by lead plaintiff’s counsel. The complaint asserts claims, purportedly brought on behalf of a class of shareholders, under Sections 10(b) and 20(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and Rule 10b-5 promulgated thereunder, and allege that the Company made false and misleading statements to the market and customers about COVID-19. The complaint seeks unspecified damages and an award of costs and expenses, including reasonable attorneys’ fees, on behalf of a purported class of purchasers of our ordinary shares between February 20, 2020 and March 10, 2020. We believe that the allegations contained in the complaint are without merit and intend to defend the complaint vigorously. We cannot predict at this point the length of time that this action will be ongoing or the liability, if any, which may arise therefrom.
In addition, in March 2020 the Florida Attorney General announced an investigation related to the Company’s marketing during the COVID-19 pandemic. Following the announcement of the investigation by the Florida Attorney General, we received notifications from other attorneys general and governmental agencies that they are conducting similar investigations. The Company is cooperating with these ongoing investigations, the outcomes of which cannot be predicted at this time.
On August 27, 2019, two lawsuits were filed against Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd. in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida under Title III of the Cuban Liberty and Solidarity (Libertad) Act of 1996, also known as the Helms-Burton Act. The complaint filed by Havana Docks Corporation alleges it holds an interest in the Havana Cruise Port Terminal and the complaint filed by Javier Garcia-Bengochea alleges that he holds an interest in the Port of Santiago, Cuba, both of which were expropriated by the Cuban Government. The complaints further allege that the Company “trafficked” in those properties by embarking and disembarking passengers at these facilities. The plaintiffs seek all available statutory remedies, including the value of the expropriated property, plus interest, treble damages, attorneys’ fees and costs. On January 7, 2020, the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida dismissed the claim by Havana Docks Corporation. On April 14, 2020, the district court granted Havana Docks Corporation’s motion to reconsider and vacated its order dismissing the claim, allowing Havana Docks Corporation to file an amended complaint on April 16, 2020. On April 24, 2020, we filed a motion seeking permission to appeal the district court’s order which was subsequently denied. On September 1, 2020, the Court entered an order staying all case deadlines and administratively closed the Garcia-Bengochea matter pending the outcome of the appeal in a related case brought by the same plaintiff. We believe we have meritorious defenses to the claims and intend to vigorously defend these matters. As of December 31, 2020, we are unable to reasonably estimate any potential contingent loss from these matters.
In the normal course of our business, various other claims and lawsuits have been filed or are pending against us. Most of these claims and lawsuits are covered by insurance and, accordingly, the maximum amount of our liability is typically limited to our deductible amount.
Nonetheless, the ultimate outcome of these claims and lawsuits that are not covered by insurance cannot be determined at this time. We have evaluated our overall exposure with respect to all of our threatened and pending litigation and, to the extent required, we have accrued amounts for all estimable probable losses associated with our deemed exposure. We are currently unable to estimate any other potential contingent losses beyond those accrued, as discovery is not complete nor is adequate information available to estimate such range of loss or potential recovery. However, based on our current knowledge, we do not believe that the aggregate amount or range of reasonably possible losses with respect to these matters will be material to our consolidated results of operations, financial condition or cash flows. We intend to vigorously defend our legal position on all claims and, to the extent necessary, seek recovery.
The Company also has agreements with its credit card processors that govern approximately $1.0 billion at December 31, 2020 in advance ticket sales that have been received by the Company relating to future voyages. These agreements allow the credit card processors to require under certain circumstances, including the existence of a material adverse change, excessive chargebacks and other triggering events, that the Company maintain a reserve which would be satisfied by posting collateral. Although the agreements vary, these requirements may generally be satisfied either through a percentage of customer payments withheld or providing cash funds directly to the card processor. Any cash reserve or collateral requested could be increased or decreased.
As of December 31, 2020, we had a reserve of approximately $200 million with a credit card processor recognized in other long-term assets, and in January 2021, we provided additional cash collateral of $250 million. Additionally, we are required to fund all refunds until further notice and 100% of incoming advance ticket sales deposits with this credit card processor will be withheld and are not expected to be released until the credit card processor’s exposure is fully collateralized. As of December 31, 2020, the exposure was approximately $780 million. The reserve shortfall of approximately $330 million, after taking into effect the January additional collateral provided, will decrease as refunds are funded, cruises are provided and amounts withheld by the credit card processor are allocated to the reserve rather than remitted to the Company. We may be required to find new credit card processors, pledge additional collateral and/or post cash reserves or take other actions that may further reduce our liquidity.