Lindblad Expeditions Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ:LIND) Q2 2020 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript

Aug 10, 2020 • 04:30 pm ET


Lindblad Expeditions Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ:LIND) Q2 2020 Earnings Conference Call - Final Transcript


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Sven-Olof Lindblad

sector. French Polynesia has opened as of July 15th to American visitors without need for quarantine. They really have thought it through, a PCR test within 72 hours of departure, another four days after arrival. It found one case to-date, on August 3rd, but has seemingly been totally contained. Other than that, there hasn't been a -- there hadn't been a COVID case in over two months.

This could really be the first safe place on Earth that opens safely to tourism. It started and we are exploring ways to make French Polynesia part of our reactivation plan. Incidentally, just as a caveat here, there have been a few more cases in the last couple of days from French nationals coming in, and -- but still only one case of a tourist. Speaking of reactivation, we have a diversified team that includes executives, operational leadership and dedicated employees, along with our consulting physician with expertise in infectious disease that is meeting every day to improve and refine protocols for reactivation.

We have always taken pride in the robust health and safety protocols across our fleet and are continually exploring ways to augment existing standards. For example, last year ahead of the pandemic, we introduced the new revolutionary cleaning system called ACT Premium Purity. It's a light-activated self-disinfecting system that significantly reduces any viral and bacterial transmission.

Our restart team is working closely with leading health experts and local officials to ensure that we are taking every step necessary. They're monitoring all countries in which we have future travel plans for possible itinerary. The changes in the requirements and in certain instances offer suggestions as to how we might operate while maintaining safety.

In order to reactivate, we are focusing on three key ingredients. First, a credible practical medical solution that involves double PCR testing, rigorous sanitation protocols and creative social distancing that does not intrude on the guest experience. Also, strict clear protocols should any guest or crew member show any signs of infection, both abroad and in relationship to the countries visited and their specific requirements.

Second, we need to welcome back geographies we wish to travel. Every country we visit is actively looking at protocols and what will allow them to safely open. And strides are being made like the steps taken by French Polynesia. More will be learned each day and I would anticipate in the weeks and months ahead more and more countries will find practical and acceptable ways to open their borders.

And third, acceptance by travelers that they can be reasonably assured of their safety while maintaining the integrity of the expedition. So here we are, nearly five months into total shutdown. Nobody is sure how much longer this will last. It's exasperating to be sure but it will at some point be resolved. And as I mentioned earlier, I do believe the pent up demand, a new demand for expedition cruising will skyrocket. We heard this from so many people, travel professionals and