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Arnold Donald, the president and CEO of Carnival Corp., the largest cruise line in the world, is leading the way for the next generation of black CEOs. The 59-year-old at the helm of Carnival has a huge challenge ahead as detailed in the cover story of `the May 2014 issue of Black Enterprise magazine.

Although 10 million passengers a year enjoy cruising, according to reports, fully half choose to travel on one of the ten cruise lines under the Carnival Corp. umbrella. Though the public sees it as one line, the cruises range from the well-known Carnival Cruise Line ships to the smaller, luxury Seabourn cruise line. Despite its missteps, Carnival is a dominant player in the cruise business, generating fully half of it’s $37.1 billion dollars in sales.

Since Donald’s ascension to the top job, Carnival has spent $700 million in safety improvements and added attractions like a concert series with top draws like Jennifer Hudson and spent another $2.5 million on an ad campaign with the theme “Moments that Matter.”

Donald also set out to coordinated the ten cruise brand that had not worked together cohesively in the past. Founded by Ted Arison in the 70′s Carnival Corp. was the first cruise line to advertise on network television.

Although Donald, a New Orleans native,  who previously ran the Executive Leadership Council, The Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation and Merisant Corp., parent company of Equal, and was the President of Monsanto, sat on the Carnival board, he wasn’t angling for the top job. But now he feels it’s a good fit.

“I am having a great time,” he told Black Enterprise. “This is an enormous opportunity at an incredible time in the life of the company.”

Read the whole story in the May 2014 issue of Black Enterprise. 

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