Less than a week after his NBA team won their third championship game, Micky Arison finds himself out of a major job. Carnival Corporation announced today that Arison will be replaced as CEO by Arnold W. Donald. Arison has been the CEO of Carnival, the Doral-based company his father founded, since 1979. However, he will remain chairman of the board.
Though profits at the company are up this quarter, thanks largely to lowered fuel costs, the company has weathered a number of PR crises in the past few years. Several ships have suffered from power outages and onboard fires. In one instance this February known as “Poop Cruise 2013,” a ship was left adrift in the Gulf of Mexico for five days with backed up toilets. In January 2012, the Costa Concordia (owned by a Carnival subsidiary) capsized off the coast of Italy, killing 32 people. This has resulted in passengers remaining hesitant to book trips through the company.
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Donald is the founder and former chairman of the board of the company that brought us Equal sweetener, and had several high level positions at Monsato. He has served as a director for Carnival since 2001. He’s also the President and Chief Executive Officer of The Executive Leadership Council, a network of high profile African-American business leaders.
Arison seems to be onboard with the change.
“I have been discussing this with the board for some time now and feel the timing is right to align our company with corporate governance best practices,” he said in the statement.
Arison also remains Carnival’s largest shareholder.