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I imagine selling the Olympic for breaking was a tough decision for Cunard White Star as apparently she was still a popular and solid ship. But was she profitable? Or was she any more popular or profitable than Berengaria, Aquitania or Majestic? To say that she was scrapped before Aquitania and Berengaria just because she was originally a White Star ship doesn't seem like a decision a company that is trying to be profitable would consider. I've read that the new Britannic and Georgic were the big money earners for Cunard White Star in the 30's. If the line didn't want to keep anything in the fleet that once belonged to White Star then why did these two ships last as long as they did with Cunard and remain in traditional White Star funnel colors and names until they were scrapped? They easily could have been renamed with traditional Cunard names and funnel colors or even sold off. Of course that would have been a bad business move since they were both well known under their original names and quite profitable.

Based on that I'd say Olympic might not have been the most profitable of the big 4. In the passenger business, a popular ship is great....but profits are everything. You don't sell or scrap your money-earners.
Cunard knew very well what the competition was at that time (Ile de France, Bremen, Europe, Rex, Conte di Savoia, Empress of Britian, Manhattan, Washington, and just on the horizon Normandie and America) and by the early 1930's Cunard White Star's Edwardian Superliners were being over-classed on the Atlantic by these big, new, stylish liners. My guess is Cunard White Star looked at every angle and had to make a decision which ship would be the first to go, then second, then third, ect. By 1939 or 1940, in only a short five years time they would all have been sold off. If the future could have been predicted at that time, I would think Olympic and Berengaria would have been at least purchaced by the Admiralty and laid up to be used as troopships in the coming war. Aquitania being the last scheduled to be withdrawn and scrapped in late 1939 or 1940 continued on for several more years as a valuable troop transport.

The Olympic may be long gone but she still lives on in the memories of those who saw her in person, sailed on her during the glory years, or have read about her and admired her graceful exterior and beautiful interiors.
 
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