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April 5 Hans Birkholz, CEO of both Ambassadors International and Windstar Cruises, told TAW that the first step was successful in the process of the sale to private equity firm Whippoorwill Associates. Birkholz said the first step had just been completed, with the court approving interim financing of $5 million and all the motions to continue operations as before. “Today is an important first step in completing the process,” Birkholz stated, “We’re very supportive of the sale – it’s the best solution for our creditors and the right thing for investors, employees and customers.” They have asked the court for a 45-day sale process, so if things continue as smoothly as they began, the sale will be complete in May.
The riverboat assets also included in the deal – Delta Queen and Columbia Queen – are up for sale, as Whippoorwill wants to concentrate on Windstar.