In Palma on Wednesday, the CEO of Italian ferry operator GNV, Matteo Cattani, announced the company’s schedules for the Balearics. GNV, part of the MSC Group, is a new entrant to the Balearic market and will be competing with Baleària, the German FRS, the French Corsica Ferries and another Italian operator, Grimaldi; GNV was originally a Grimaldi subsidiary.
GNV will have daily Barcelona-Palma and Valencia-Palma-Ibiza services as well as inter-island routes; the ‘GNV Bridge’ and ‘GNV Sealand’ will, respectively, be used for these routes. Cattani said that “we are aware that we are facing established competitors”. For GNV, it is a “great commitment”.
Meanwhile, Grimaldi will on Thursday formally sign the purchase agreement to acquire the whole Trasmediterránea fleet (five ships) from the Canaries company Armas. The CEO of Grimaldi Logística España, Marion Massarotti, said at the end of April that Grimaldi would be maintaining Trasmediterránea’s commercial brand, structure and employment; this includes 50 employees in the Balearics.
Grimaldi’s purchase means that it will be operating Trasmediterranean routes between Barcelona and the Balearics (Palma, Mahon and Ibiza) and between Valencia and the three Balearic ports.
Since the disappearance of Iscomar in 2011, only Baleària and Trasmediterránea have operated regular services in the Balearics. There will now be three for the crossings to the mainland ports.