UPDATE: A passenger ferry service that’s set to connect Vancouver and Victoria won’t be setting sail until next spring — at the earliest.
The new Clipper was supposed to begin travelling between the two harbours in the next couple of months, but now the Seattle-based company is delaying the launch while it searches for the right vessel to handle the challenging conditions in the Salish Sea.
VANCOUVER – A new ferry service linking Vancouver and Victoria is being planned now that FRS, a global ferry and shipping group, has acquired a majority interest in Seattle-based Clipper.
Clipper, which operates Clipper Vacations, currently runs a high-speed Victoria Clipper ferry service from Seattle to Victoria, and from Seattle to San Juan Island.
With the acquisition, Clipper says it will add a new hub in Vancouver to connect with Victoria.
FRS says the acquisition will also allow it to launch a new ferry service from Florida to Cuba, pending government approval.
Both companies say further details about new hubs in Vancouver, Florida and Cuba will be revealed in the coming weeks and months ahead.
Terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.
“By acquiring Clipper, we are expanding our presence in the North American market, bringing with us our long history of operational acumen and connection to the European tourism market,” said Gotz Becker, the CEO of German-based FRS.
“Clipper has an impressive track record in the Pacific Northwest and Canada, and will now serve even more of the Canadian market with a new Vancouver service.”
Merideth Tall, who founded Clipper, will remain as CEO and retain minority ownership of the company.
“Combining with FRS will allow us to expand our travel products and services to provide many more options for our customers that will now include Vancouver and Cuba,” said Tall.