NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - Gov. Bobby Jindal and Viking Cruises Chairman Torstein Hagen announced Tuesday that New Orleans has been selected as the homeport for the company's first North American river cruise itineraries.
The Mississippi River cruises will operate from docking facilities near the French Quarter. Viking's new service will create 416 new direct jobs for Louisiana-based operations and vessel crews, with an average salary of $40,000, plus benefits. Louisiana Economic Development (LED) also estimates the project will result in an additional 368 new indirect jobs for a total of more than 780 new jobs in the southeast region of the state.
Plans call for the construction of six new vessels over the next three years at an estimated cost of $90 million to $100 million per vessel, all of which will be built in U.S. shipyards and crewed by U.S. citizens. The vessels will be owned by Tennenbaum Capital Partners, a Los Angeles-based alternative investment management firm.