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Founders

Off Radar Cruise News was co-founded by Mike Hood (Marine Journalist) and Grant Holmes (Cruise Industry specialist). Here below is a brief profile of each founder.

Grant Holmes
Grant features a background with 25 years experience in Tour Operations, Hotel, Cruise, Marketing, Sales and Training.

His Cruise Industry experience started in 1999 whereby he set up, recruited, trained and developed the First Choice Cruises team and directed operations on the Bolero from inception. His team exceeded high budget expectations by 50% for sales and by 25% for Customer service in the first year and a half of operation.

This success led to his appointment at Festival Cruises in 2000. His position quickly evolved to Director of On Board Revenue, On Board Marketing, Shore Excursions & Tour Operations. He managed a 110 million euro income generation budget and innovated revenue and customer service linked training that delivered a comparative industry best in 2003 for a European fleet of 8 ships averaging 45+ euro pppd, whilst optimizing customer service in harmony.

Today Grant spearheads Progress International Tourism & Business Services Ltd, whereby he comprised an excellent team of Consultants and built an impressive client list, featuring Costa Crociere, Aida Cruises, Iberocruceros, Silversea Cruises, Thomson Cruises, the World Federation of Tourist Guides Associations, the Government of Sharjah UAE, the Cyprus Tourism Organisation, the Larnaka Municipality and several international ports and Tourism Companies.

Grant is still involved with Off Radar Cruise News and acts in the capacity of Publisher and Founder, ensuring that the original principles and values of the Blog are maintained.Grant Holmes
Grant features a background with 25 years experience in Tour Operations, Hotel, Cruise, Marketing, Sales and Training.

His Cruise Industry experience started in 1999 whereby he set up, recruited, trained and developed the First Choice Cruises team and directed operations on the Bolero from inception. His team exceeded high budget expectations by 50% for sales and by 25% for Customer service in the first year and a half of operation.

This success led to his appointment at Festival Cruises in 2000. His position quickly evolved to Director of On Board Revenue, On Board Marketing, Shore Excursions & Tour Operations. He managed a 110 million euro income generation budget and innovated revenue and customer service linked training that delivered a comparative industry best in 2003 for a European fleet of 8 ships averaging 45+ euro pppd, whilst optimizing customer service in harmony.

Today Grant spearheads Progress International Tourism & Business Services Ltd, whereby he comprised an excellent team of Consultants and built an impressive client list, featuring Costa Crociere, Aida Cruises, Iberocruceros, Silversea Cruises, Thomson Cruises, the World Federation of Tourist Guides Associations, the Government of Sharjah UAE, the Cyprus Tourism Organisation, the Larnaka Municipality and several international ports and Tourism Companies.

Grant is still involved with Off Radar Cruise News and acts in the capacity of Publisher and Founder, ensuring that the original principles and values of the Blog are maintained.

Mike Hood
Mike sadly passed away in 2010. He was a marine journalist and media relations specialist with over 30 years experience writing about the international shipping industry. He particularly had an in-depth knowledge of the Cruise and Ferry industries. During his illustrious career Mike worked for a number of leading shipping industry titles, including Marine Week, Fairplay, Shipcare and Shiprepair & Conversion Technology, as well as freelancing for other “blue chip” titles such as Lloyd’s List, Seatrade Cruise Review, Lloyd’s Cruise International and Cruise & Ferry Info.

In addition to being the former Off Radar Cruise News Editor, he also ran HoodLines PR, which specialised in the handling of marine media relations campaigns for a number of specialist companies in the shipping industry.

Mike’s marine PR track record was wide and varied, including handling the media relations for one of the world’s leading cruise ship designers, an international ferry operator, as well as a number of specialist marine equipment designers and suppliers to the cruise and ferry industries.

Mike Hood will always be remembered at Off Radar Cruise News for the blunt, direct, original and instinctive real life comment that he brought to our Blog.

Grant Holmes
Grant features a background with 25 years experience in Tour Operations, Hotel, Cruise, Marketing, Sales and Training.

His Cruise Industry experience started in 1999 whereby he set up, recruited, trained and developed the First Choice Cruises team and directed operations on the Bolero from inception. His team exceeded high budget expectations by 50% for sales and by 25% for Customer service in the first year and a half of operation.

This success led to his appointment at Festival Cruises in 2000. His position quickly evolved to Director of On Board Revenue, On Board Marketing, Shore Excursions & Tour Operations. He managed a 110 million euro income generation budget and innovated revenue and customer service linked training that delivered a comparative industry best in 2003 for a European fleet of 8 ships averaging 45+ euro pppd, whilst optimizing customer service in harmony.

Today Grant spearheads Progress International Tourism & Business Services Ltd, whereby he comprised an excellent team of Consultants and built an impressive client list, featuring Costa Crociere, Aida Cruises, Iberocruceros, Silversea Cruises, Thomson Cruises, the World Federation of Tourist Guides Associations, the Government of Sharjah UAE, the Cyprus Tourism Organisation, the Larnaka Municipality and several international ports and Tourism Companies.

Grant is still involved with Off Radar Cruise News and acts in the capacity of Publisher and Founder, ensuring that the original principles and values of the Blog are maintained.
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