Speakers at Seatrade Europe Conference 2019
Figen Ayan was born in Paris and is a French and Turkish citizen. She studied and obtained her diploma in, “Lettres Modernes” from La Sorbonne – Paris IV.
She debuted her cruise career in 1994 as a port agent and tour operator. Subsequently, she acted as the Marketing and Communications Manager of Global Investment Holdings until 2005 then promoted to Marketing Director of Global Ports Holding until 2014.
Since February 2014 Ayan serves as the VP of Cruise Operations at Galataport Istanbul. From 2014, Ms. Ayan has been acting as the Board Member of Medcruise and on a national level, since October 2018 she has been electe as Vice Board Member of TÜRKLİM (Turkish Port Operators’ Association).
Mary Bond is Group Director of Seatrade Cruise, a division within Informa Markets and responsible for the Seatrade portfolio of global cruise events, print and online cruise publishing.
Mary is also publisher and editor-in-chief of Seatrade Cruise News, the leading daily online news service for the global cruise industry and Seatrade Cruise Review quarterly, the official magazine at Seatrade cruise events worldwide.
Mary has worked in theshipping industry for 39 years, first for Lloyd’s Register of Shipping before joining Seatrade’s editorial team in 1985.
Mary is on the steering committee of CruiseBritian and has edited MedCruise News and MedCruise Yearbook for more than 15 years.
Claus Bødker joined Cruise Baltic and Cruise Copenhagen Network in May 2014. He came from a position as CEO in a subsidiary to the National Lottery in Denmark. Claus has spent most of his career within the experience economy marketplace, including a management position with the leading Danish soccer club, F.C. Copenhagen.
In addition to the above, he brings with him 14 years of experience from the travel industry from companies such as KILROY travels, Thomas Cook and Hertz Denmark, where he was CEO.
Claus holds an MsC in Economics and Business Administration from Copenhagen Business School, an MBA from Henley Business School, and latest a Master in Experience Management from Roskilde University.
Tal Danai founded ArtLink in 1996. In early 1997, ArtLink partnered with Sotheby’s auction house to form ArtLink@Sotheby’s International Young Art Program, aspiring to introduce a new segment of emerging art into the global art market. In 1999, CNN deemed the program "the most exciting development in the art market in decades."
In 2002, Danai introduced ArtLink as a group of expert art curators, supported by experienced art project managers, expert art purchasers and logistics professionals to the hospitality industry. ArtLink curated and provided art collections for over 120 hospitality projects in 32 countries, including the Jing An Shangri-La in Shanghai, the Four Seasons DIFC in Dubai, the Plaza Hotel in New York City, the Waldorf Astoria in Chengdu, the St. Regis hotels in Cairo, Amman and Belgrade, The Rosewood hotels in Hoi An and Ningbo and the Mandarin Oriental hotels in London and Riyadh.
In 2014, ArtLink completed the art collection for the Holland America Line Koningsdam Ship followed by the Nieuw Statendam. The company also curated and provided the art for the Seabourn ultra-luxury Encore and Ovation ships and is currently working with Costa Cruises and P&O Cruises and on the new Ryndam for Holland America Line.
Prior to ArtLink, Danai served as the Director of International Marketing for Cybra Corporation and in 1989 assumed the position of Director of International Operations for the Commodity Spot Shipping Division of the Brazilian conglomerate SATRO. In 1993, Danai founded EcoLink, which restructured failing small businesses into highly profitable enterprises and traded in foodstuff for the former Soviet Union countries.
Danai holds academic degrees in fine art, business and law, alongside the rank of Sensei in Kyokushin Karate and Wood Badge in the International Scouts Movement.
De Carvalho, Luis
Bermello Ajamil & Partners Europe
Luis de Carvalho is the CEO of Bermello Ajamil & Partners Europe, the #1 Port & Destination Development firm specialized in Architecture, Engineering & Planning responsible for 75% of all Cruise & Maritime projects worldwide.
B&A is currently active in the USA, Caribbean, Canada, Central & South America, Northern Europe, Baltic, Mediterranean, Atlantic Islands, Indian Ocean, Asia and Africa.
Luis started his career in 1986 with Premier Cruise Lines and RCCL in Miami. He then spent 12 years with Crystal Cruises, mainly as Global Port Coordinator overseeing shore side operations worldwide and inspecting new ports and destinations.
Other positions include National Director Cruise - TUI Spain; Director Cruise Operations Europe - Tumlare; Director Cruise Operations Scandinavia – Kuoni; and CEO - Consult DC.
Azamara Club Cruises
Frederik Erdmann is Seatrade's German cruise correspondent since 2002.
As a maritime trade press correspondent and visiting lecturer of the Flensburg University of Applied Sciences, Frederik Erdmann concentrates on ferry and cruise ship management, port development as well as safety and security in passenger shipping.
He is also a member of the Flensburg Chamber of Commerce's Tourism Committee.
Following secondary school graduation he joined the port agency network, Sartori & Berger, on a vocational training program.
After subsequent studies of Business Administration, Frederik Erdmann held various positions at Sartori & Berger until 2010.
After a period of working with the Flensburg Chamber of Commerce, he was appointed Designated Person Safety/Security, Environment and Quality of the coastal ferry operator, Wyker Dampfschiffs-Reederei.
Liz Gammon is an innovative Industry Influencer/Marketeer based in Iceland, assisting her clients to make an impact on cruise by creating innovative marketing strategies promoting long-term growth for their businesses.
Her specialties include engaging content creation, social media management & digital storytelling.
Liz’s past lives include a stint on beauty counters in South Wales as a senior sales consultant, a decade travelling the world as a solo piano bar entertainer, time spent as a tour guide and eight years as manager of a busy shore excursions department serving multiple ports in Iceland.
Her passion for the cruise industry, in particular shore excursions, has earned her global recognition along with several international awards for creative marketing achievements & innovative product development
Intercruises / TUI Destination Experiences
With over 20 years of travel and tourism experience, Arantxa leads the development and implementation of sustainable practice for Intercruises and TUI Destination Services. Prior to this role, she held several global roles for Hotelbeds Group and TUI Travel Accommodation and Destinations.
She became Head of Sustainable Development for TUI Destination Experiences in 2015, later adding Intercruises to her portfolio following the acquisition of Destination Services in 2018.
Arantxa holds a degree in Business Administration by the University Oberta de Catalunya (UOC), a Master’s Degree in Quality & Environment, has been accredited as Travelife Auditor and has completed the GSTC (Global Sustainable Tourism Council) Sustainable Tourism Training.
Málaga Cruise Port
Susana has worked in Cruceros Malaga S.A for over 11 years. She is currently the managing director of the three cruise terminals of the Port of Málaga which has around 16,000 sqm of dedicated cruise facility infrastructure. Susana is responsible for port operation, guest services, commercial and strategic planning, negotiation, and logistics management. Susana was also appointed as PFSO and responsible for security, environment issues and quality service for the cruise facilities in the Port of Málaga.
Her other responsibilities include coordinating both turn around and transit operations, collaborating with different stakeholders both shoreside and onboard by managing the relationship with port authorities and cruise lines, as well as port cost control. She helps the port to achieve operational excellence by maintaining quality and environmental standards, and identify possible trials and designing ad-hoc contingency plans for operational emergencies instead.
Bermello Ajamil & Partners Europe
Arnecke Sibeth Dabelstein
McCarthy, Capt Michael
Captain Michael McCarthy is the current Chairman of Cruise Europe, former Commercial Manager of the Port of Cork Company Ireland, and Past President of the Irish Institute of Master Mariners. He is a Class 1 Master Mariner and a University College Cork postgraduate in Management and Marketing.
Michael has set up a private consultancy company having built up an extensive knowledge of the port and shipping sector over the last 48 years including Port Operations, Terminal Management, EU Cruise Initiatives and in the private sector as a former Director/ P&I Marine Surveyor with Sea Service, Marine Cargo Insurance Surveyors.
David has over 25 years’ experience in the hospitality and maritime industry at Executive level, both operationally and in vessel newbuild/refurbishment design and delivery. A 14-year sea-going career with P&O Cruises, was followed by various land-based leadership roles at Carnival UK, Southampton. Responsible for several refurbishments and newbuild projects, notably the P&O Cruises current flagship, Britannia, where he is proud to have been presented to Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II.
Now at AD Associates, an award-winning, multidisciplinary design agency based in the heart of London, David overseas all marine projects as well as Sales & Marketing activity. Throughout its lifespan, his extensive managerial experience across complex projects and service delivery, looks to add value, nurture relationships and build trust and credibility with clients and partners world-wide.
TUI Cruises GmbH
Wybcke Meier was appointed new CEO of TUI Cruises on October 1, 2014.
The qualified travel agent started her career at Fischer Reisen, where she held various positions with managerial responsibility for marketing and sales.
After Fischer Reisen was sold to Condor Flugdienst GmbH, she was at the helm of the integration process of the tour operator into C&N Touristic AG.
In 2000, Wybcke Meier became head of sales at “Via 1 – Schöner Reisen” online travel shopping channel in Hamburg. From 2002 to 2010, she headed sales and marketing as an authorized signatory and member of the management board at tour operator Öger Tours.
Most recently, Wybcke Meier was managing director at Windrose Finest Travel and OFT.
Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd
Ukko Metsola is Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd.’s Vice President for government relations in Europe and Asia-Pacific. In this role he is responsible primarily for the development, planningand execution of RCL’s policies and objectives involving legislative and regulatory matters.
Metsola has served RCL with similar responsibilities since 2007, first as an outside consultant to the company. He started in his current position at the beginning of 2016.
Ukko is a Finnish citizen who started his political career as Senior Adviser in the Finnish Parliament and then in the Prime Ministers Office (Helsinki).
He is a graduate from the University of Helsinki and from the Harvard Kennedy School, where he studied with a Fulbright scholarship. He is based in Brussels, Belgium, with his wife and four sons.
AETHOS Consulting Group
Intercruises Shoreside & Port Services
Carmen worked on-board in various media and revenue management roles for various cruise lines for almost 10 years, based out of Miami, before brief stints with Canon in the UK and Azkoyen in Spain. In 2013, Carmen joined Intercruises as Shorex Manager Asia, where she led shorex operations and product development across thirteen countries.
In 2015 Carmen was promoted to Global Shore Excursions Manager, in charge of global product development and operation delivery, with a focus on innovation and adoption of new technology.
Carmen holds a Bachelor’s degree in Management & Marketing in Tourism from the University George Baritiu in her native Romania.
As CEO, Gianni Onorato oversees MSC Cruises’ business from its global headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland, reporting to the Company’s Board of Directors and to its Executive Chairman.
With over 30 years’ experience in the cruise industry, Mr Onorato has a finely developed understanding of the cruise business and extensive experience in senior executive leadership, having served as President of Costa Cruises from 2004 to 2013.
Born in Italy, Mr Onorato graduated from Naples’ Istituto Orientale with a degree in Foreign Languages and Literature in 1983, and then specialized at SDA Bocconi School of Management in Milan and INSEAD in Fontainebleau.
Mr Onorato began his career in 1986 at Costa Cruises as Food and Beverage Manager before becoming Cruise Product Director. From 1997 he served as Vice President & Cruise Operations Director and was responsible for logistics and provisioning, as well as all activities relating to calls, excursions and hotel operations.
Global Sustainable Tourism Council
Pojer, Karl J.
Born in Austria, Karl J. Pojer trained in hospitality, taking positions in luxury hotels worldwide.
From 1980 to 1995, he was senior management in leading hotel groups in the USA, Germany, Belgium and Portugal.
Joining TUI in 1996, Pojer served until 2003 as Managing Director of Robinson Club GmbH, a 100% subsidiary of TUI AG.
Between 2003 and 2013 Pojer held positions of Director and Divisional Director of TUI Hotels & Resorts.
In 2013 Pojer joined Hapag-Lloyd Cruises as CEO, a 100% subsidiary of TUI AG, whose portfolio includes: EUROPA 2 and EUROPA - the only two ships ever awarded the prestigious 5-stars-plus ranking - and expedition ships HANSEATIC nature and BREMEN.
In 2016, Karl J. Pojer was appointed Chairman of CLIA Germany.
Global Ports Holding
Cruise Gate Hamburg
Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd