Who Is Micky Arison?

Micky Arison is the director and chair of Carnival Corporation. He served as president and CEO of the company from 1979 to 2013.

Arison is the managing general partner of the NBA basketball team, the Miami HEAT. In 2022, Micky Arison's net worth was estimated at $6.4 billion.

Key Takeaways

• Micky Arison is the director and chair of Carnival Corporation, the largest cruise line operator.

• He is the son of Ted Arison, co-founder of Norwegian Cruise Line, and founder of Carnival Corporation.

• Arison is the managing general partner of the NBA basketball team, the Miami Heat.

Micky Arison

Investopedia / Lara Antal

Early Life and Education

Micky Arison was born on June 29, 1949, in Tel-Aviv, Israel. He briefly attended the University of Miami. In 1972, Micky Arison joined Carnival Cruise Line, founded by his father, Ted Arison.

Arison began his career in sales and customer reservations at Carnival before being named president and CEO in 1979.

Carnival Corporation

Micky Arison helped Carnival Cruise Line become "The World’s Most Popular Cruise Line" and the first to advertise on network television in 1984.

In 1987, Arison led Carnival's initial public offering of 20% of its common stock, generating approximately $400 million. The influx of capital allowed for expansion and Carnival acquired other cruise lines, including Holland America, Seabourn, Cunard, Costa Cruises, and Princess. In 1993, Carnival Cruise Line became Carnival Corporation.

By 2003, Carnival Corporation cornered the luxury cruise market with a 50% market share, and Carnival's cruises frequently operated at full occupancy, ensuring profitability.

With its corporate headquarters in Miami and several regional headquarters around the world, Carnival Corporation’s stock is listed on both the New York Stock Exchange and the London Stock Exchange. The company established its Asia headquarters in Singapore in 2013 with multiple offices, including several in China.


The number of cruise ships in Carnival Corporation's fleet under brands Carnival, Princess, Holland America, Seabourn, Cunard, Aida, Costa, and P&O.

Micky Arison stepped down as CEO of Carnival Corporation in 2013 and currently serves as chairman of the company, overseeing diversified travel and tourism holdings, including cruise ships, tour operators, and hotel chains.

As of 2022, Carnival Corporation is recovering from a 16-month hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic, anticipating again reaching the high of 2019, Carnival Corporation’s record full-year revenue of $20.8 billion, which placed the company in the top 160 on the Fortune 500 list.

Miami Heat

In 1995, Mickey Arison became managing general partner of the NBA team, the Miami HEAT, and hired Pat Riley as the team's head coach. Under Arison's leadership, HEAT has evolved into one of the NBA’s top organizations with numerous playoff appearances and became a championship team in 2006. The HEAT also won the NBA finals in 2012 and 2013. Arison served as chair of the NBA Board of Governors from 2005 to 2008.

Is Micky Arison an Author?

Micky Arison co-authored First To 16 WinsThe Official Commemorative of the NBA Champion Miami Heat in 2013.

What Contributions Has Micky Arison Made to South Florida?

The Arison family and Carnival Corporation have supported a variety of arts-related and community service organizations, including The National Young Arts Foundation, the Miami Children’s Museum, and the Miami Project to Cure Paralysis.

What Is the FTX Arena?

With Micky Arison's commitment to Miami and South Florida, he developed the public-private partnership that together built the county-owned state-of-the-art FTX Arena that fans enjoy and the NBA Miami HEAT calls home.

The Bottom Line

Micky Arison helped Carnival Cruise Line grow to the multinational corporation it is today. As a key executive at the company for 50 years, Micky Arison led its IPO, expansion, and acquisitions.

Article Sources
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  1. Forbes. "Micky Arison."

  2. Carnival. "Our Brands."

  3. Carnival. "Corporate Information."

  4. Long Beach Business Journal. "Carnival Cruise Lines Has Long Recovery After Pandemic Hurdles."

  5. NBA. "Micky Arison."

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