The boss of Fred Olsen Cruise Lines believes the line’s small ship ethos means it is well-placed to appeal to former guests of Cruise & Maritime Voyages.

Speaking before it emerged that former CMV boss Christian Verhounig had acquired a number of the assets of the failed line, Fred Olsen managing director Peter Deer said it remained to be seen if a “CMV2” would emerge.

But in the meantime, he said Fred Olsen had already seen interest from former CMV passengers.

He told a Travel Weekly webcast: “It was really sad about CMV. They’re not located very far from where we are, and we’re pretty sad for the teams that worked so hard to grow the brand over the last 10 years.

“They’ve grown the brand, which really focused on a more budget style cruising – they were known to sell cruises at a lower price level than ourselves and many other UK operators, so I suspect there will be customers who have sailed with CMV who are still looking for a budget style of cruising.”

Deer added: “What we find when we talk to our customers, one of the reasons they come with us is it’s all about going on smaller ships and being known as a name rather than a number. So I really don’t know if the customers of CMV are more thinking about budget or it’s all about small ship cruising.

“I suspect it’s a combination of both and for sure, we’re going to see some transfers over from CMV for people who say we’re a cruise line which has a similar itinerary style as CMV did, it’s still small ship cruising.”

He said: “I’m sure all the other cruise lines will see the reflection of the demise of CMV in their bookings going forward. We’ve seen a few so far, but it’s all early days at this stage.”