Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd, the parent company of Royal Caribbean International, announced the company's record-setting year will mean a surprise bonus for all of the cruise line's 66,000 employees.
Thanks to the company hitting its goal of doubling earnings per share and recording a double-digit return on invested capital, employees were informed they will be thanked for their contribution with individual salary bonuses of five percent.
"Exceptional results require exceptional effort," said Richard D. Fain, RCL's chairman and CEO. "Reaching the Double-Double required remarkable focus and discipline from our employees, and they delivered."
Employees will receive equity awards equal to five percent of their 2017 salaries in an $80 million program called the "Thank You, Thank You Bonus." The awards, which vest over three years, will go to all employees – shipboard and shoreside, full-time and part-time, domestic and overseas. Corporate officers, however, are excluded. In addition to the five percent equity awards, the company will contribute to the Crew Welfare Fund for upgrades to crew living and recreational areas.
Fain said the Thank You, Thank You Bonus had the added benefit of enabling employees to see the company as shareholders do. "Ours is a people business, Fain said." We want to thank every one of our people for the hard work that got us to today's announcement, and give them a stake in our success going forward."