(11:05 a.m. BST) -- Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines has purchased two Holland America Line ships, expanding its fleet to six vessels -- but may lose two ships in the process.
The HAL ships, which will be renamed Bolette and Borealis, previously sailed as Amsterdam and Rotterdam, and carried up to 1,380 and 1,404 passengers respectively.
The ships will become the line's two largest vessels and will join the Fred. Olsen fleet in September. The line is currently on an operational pause until the end of September.
In a statement by holding company Bonheur there is a line which suggests that two Fred. ships may be leaving the fleet after the two HAL ships join.
It states: "Considering divestment of two vessels within the current fleet," -- but does not offer any more detail. Fred. Olsen would not expand on the statement.
The move follows yesterday's announcement that four ships will leave the Holland America Line fleet. The two others are Massdam and Veendam, which will go to an undisclosed buyer next month.
"We have chosen these vessels as they will fit seamlessly into our existing fleet of small ships, each carrying under 1,500 guests, bringing with them new and larger public areas whilst not compromising on our small ship experience," said Fred. Olsen Junior, chairman of Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines. "The naming of the vessels is important to us. Bolette and Borealis are both names of ships we have had in years gone by."
Bolette derives from the old Norse and means "one who helps or heals wounds in battle." Borealis is a nod to the night sky.
"This increase in our capacity demonstrates our confidence in the future," Olsen added. "With over 170 years of seafaring history, we have sailed through many difficult periods.
"With these new additions to the fleet, we will come out of this current situation stronger than ever, ready to deliver the award-winning itineraries that we are famous for."
Managing Director Peter Deer called the acquisition an "exciting chapter" in Fred. Olsen's history and expressed enthusiasm over providing new ships for the line's loyal passengers to explore.
"Of course, we also hope to attract new guests to Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines and we look forward to demonstrating the exceptional service that makes us the best UK cruise line for repeat business," Deer said.
The ship sale is part of Carnival Corp.'s ongoing disposal of 13 ships from its global brands, which includes P&O Cruises' Oceana.
The two new ships will enter the fleet later this year following time to allow for rebranding work to be undertaken.
Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines' current ocean ships -- the 1,325-passenger Balmoral, 924-passenger Braemar, 853-passenger Boudicca and 799-passenger Black Watch -- are in Babcock’s Rosyth Facilities in Scotland, where the two new ships will join them.