Company: Carnival Corporation & Plc
Brand value: US$1,877 million
Headquarter city: Genoa
Year formed: 1854
Costa Crociere was founded as a cargo line taking olive oil and textiles between Sardinia and Liguria. A passenger service was introduced in 1947, and Costa now operates 15 cruise ships, which all sail under the Italian flag and provide cruise holidays in the Mediterranean, Northern Europe, the Caribbean, the Indian Ocean, the Middle East, South East Asia and South America. Costa Crociere is the only international cruise line operating under an Italian flag, and as one of the oldest cruise brands in the market, it is well known at home and abroad. An accident in 2012, in which its ship the Costa Concordia ran aground and capsized off the coast of Italy, resulted in 32 deaths. The tragedy and the subsequent trial of the ship’s captain meant Costa Crociere was in the news for months. In its brand communications, Costa makes extensive use of TV, print, direct email, online and social, with social media used more heavily after the Costa Concordia disaster. The tone of communications is quite traditional, focusing on the features of the ships and the on-board experience, but also light-hearted. Chef Barbieri, from the TV program Masterchef, promotes on-board dining options, and there are references to popular Italian TV programs to promote the entertainment. Pop singer Shakira features in the current campaign, launched in 2016, under the banner “Benvenuto alla Felicita2” or “Welcome to happiness, squared”. Footballer Gerard Piqué has also appeared in Costa ads. Costa Cruises, which owns the German travel brand AIDA Kreuzfahrten, was acquired by Carnival Corporation in 2000. Carnival Corporation & Plc, listed on the New York and London stock exchanges.