This item is an extremely rare American Bank Note Company working proof for a Carnival Cruise Lines, Inc. stock certificate.
Working proofs were used during the American Bank Note pre-production process. Each piece details the intricacies of the old fashioned cut-and-paste method in which the designs were developed. The proof was subsequently circulated amongst American Bank Note Company officials and the executives of the customer (in this case Carnival Cruise Lines) for editing and approval. The markings from this process are evident on the layers of the proof and the distribution board as detailed by the images below. Once the approval and editing process was completed, the mass production of the certificate occurred for distribution to eventual shareholders. This unique item offers a glimpse into the bank note approval and printing process.
Working proof (1 piece), mounted inside a grey hard board folder.
This item is presented in an oversized, rigid hard board grey folder that measures 12 1/2" (w) x 8 1/2 (h).
The main proof (pictured above) is covered by a clear layer (tissue sheet) with the working markings from the editing process. When the layer is pulled back, the piece appears as pictured below:
The inside of the cardboard folder also contains a proof of what would appear on the back of the certificate, and is shown below:
The wonderful vignette on this piece depicts one of the line's cruise ships, and is shown below:
Begun with one ship that ran aground on its maiden voyage, Carnival
is now the largest cruise company in the world and either owns or has purchased interest in seven cruise lines, including Carnival Cruise Lines, Holland America Line, Windstar Cruises, Cunard White Star Line, Seabourn Cruise Line, Costa Crociere S.p.A., and Airtours' Sun Cruises. Carnival has combined these cruise lines into an operating fleet of 43 state-of-the-art ships.
Carnival was founded in 1972 by Ted Arison, an Israeli immigrant. After serving in World War II with the British Army and in Israel's War of Independence, in the late 1940s Arison founded a cargo line running between Israel and New York, but was put out of business by competition from the Israeli state-run shipping line. In 1954 he moved to the United States, where he took a position as cargo manager for El Al, Israel's national airline. He eventually founded his own air freight company, Trans Air System, which went public in the late 1960s.
In 1968, at the age of 42, Arison moved to Miami to operate a small Israeli-owned cruise ship running between Florida and the Caribbean. When the Israeli government impounded the boat to collect the owners' debt, Arison quickly filled a Norwegian Caribbean Line ship with the customers he had lined up. Convinced that he should own boats rather than operate them for others, in 1972 he entered into a partnership with former schoolmate Meshulam Riklis, who then owned the travel conglomerate American International Travel Service (AITS). They formed Carnival Cruise as a subsidiary of AITS, and for $6.5 million they purchased the ship Empress of Canada, which they renamed the Mardi Gras.
The ship's first voyage was less than spectacular: the Mardi Gras ran aground off the Florida coast with several hundred travel agents on board. Future voyages went more smoothly, however, and in 1974 Arison bought Riklis's share of Carnival for $1, also assuming the company's debt of more than $5 million. To cut costs, Arison sought to reduce fuel consumption by reducing the speed of the Mardi Gras and the number of stops it made. This simple economizing measure was to revolutionize the entire cruise industry. Since passengers would have to spend more time at sea between Caribbean ports of call, Arison added more on-board entertainment features, including a disco, casino, movie theater, and nightclubs. Carnival's marketing staff quickly dubbed the Mardi Gras the "Fun Ship," and other cruise lines soon followed Arison's lead.
In the 1970s the hit television series "The Love Boat" helped revitalize the cruise industry, bringing people on board ships in larger numbers than ever before: between 1970 and 1986 the number of people taking cruises soared from 500,000 to 2.1 million. By 1978 Arison had three ships running seven-day cruises from Florida to the Caribbean and in the Caribbean itself: the Mardi Gras; the Carnivale, which he bought in 1975; and the Festivale, which he bought in 1977. Despite a bad economy and high fuel prices, in 1978 Arison also contracted for a fourth ship, the Tropicale, which was completed in 1982. In 1979 Arison's 30-year-old son, Micky Arison, was named president and chief executive of the company.
During the recession of the early 1980s, Carnival ordered three more ships, the first from the Danish Aalborg shipyard at a cost of $180 million and two additional ships from the Swedish state shipbuilding company, Svenska Varv, for a total of $262 million. With the completion of these three "superliners"--Holiday, Jubilee, and Celebration--Carnival had the world's largest cruise line fleet, with seven ships.
To help fill these ships, Carnival adopted aggressive marketing and advertising strategies. In 1984 Carnival initiated the memorable "Fun Ship" advertising campaign, which featured talk show host Kathie Lee Gifford partaking of shipboard amenities and singing "We've Got the Fun." In 1984, for what was then the largest network television advertising campaign in the cruise industry, Carnival spent $10 million to advertise during "The Love Boat" and network news shows.
To gain support from travel agents, Carnival routinely sent representatives to travel agencies to inquire about vacation options. If the agent recommended a cruise as a first option, the representative would give the agent $10. If the agent's first recommendation was a Carnival cruise, he or she would get $1,000. By the end of 1989 Carnival had given away more than $500,000 with this program.
In 1988 Carnival purchased the Holland America Line for $625 million. A long-standing company with four cruise ships and about 4,500 berths, Holland America sailed to the Alaska coast in the summer and the Eastern Caribbean in the winter. Holland's trips were aimed at higher-income travelers--its Caribbean cruises cost 27 percent more than a Carnival cruise of the same length. In addition, as part of the package, Carnival acquired two other companies that Holland America owned: Windstar Sail Cruises and Holland America Westours, which included Westmark Hotels.
The acquisition greatly expanded the company's operations. Windstar Sail Cruises, whose three large passenger sailing ships operated in the South Pacific, Mediterranean, and Caribbean, served the luxury market. Westours operated Westmark's 18 hotels in addition to five dayboats, 240 motor coaches, and eight glass-domed railcars in Alaska and the Canadian Northwest.
In 1989 Carnival completed the Crystal Palace Resort & Casino, a lavish 150-acre resort in the Bahamas, which cost Carnival $250 million to develop. The 1,550 room hotel had many extravagant features, including a $25,000 per night suite that included a robot that brought bath towels and an aquarium with a stingray. With its 13 restaurants, golf course, tennis courts, and other recreational facilities, the Crystal Palace was the biggest resort in the region.
The following year Ted Arison, at the age of 66, stepped down as chairperson of Carnival and was succeeded by his son Micky. In an effort to gain more working capital, Carnival offered 7.85 million Class A common shares for sale in 1991.
The company also entered into an agreement in 1991 to acquire Premier Cruise Lines for $372 million. Though smaller than Carnival, Premier had a lucrative contract with Walt Disney Company
to be the official cruise line for Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida. The deal fell through, however, when a final agreement could not be reached on the price.
In 1992 Carnival agreed to acquire a percentage of Seabourn Cruise Lines. Seabourn, operated in partnership with Atle Byrnestad, served the ultra-luxury market, running tours to such locations as South America, the Baltics, the Mediterranean, and Southeast Asia. The company also signed a contract for a $330 million ship, the Imagination, to be delivered in the fall of 1995. Perhaps the most impressive ship introduced in the modern era was the Carnival Destiny, the largest passenger ship afloat at 101,000 tons and room for 2,640 people. Its maiden voyage was in 1996.
In 1997 Carnival purchased a 50 percent interest in Costa Cruise Lines, in partnership with Airtours, a travel company. These acquisitions strengthened the company's presence around the world, but especially in the Caribbean. Yet the company's most important acquisition came in 1998 when it purchased a controlling interest in Cunard White Star Line. Cunard's five ships, including the QE2, the Vistafjord, the Royal Viking Sun, and Sea Goddess I and II catapulted Carnival into the super-luxury cruise line business.
By 1998 the company had changed its legal name to Carnival Corporation, to emphasize the growing diversity within its cruise lines.
See Additional American Bank Note Company Proofs