May 31, 2020

Monthly News - May 2020

-pic of the month- Zeelander Expands Existing Shipyard

Azimut-Benetti Group Committed in Getting Italy on Track

“We are fortunate in that we are not only a strong company but also have substantial credibility at an international level. We want to draw on this as we play our part in upholding the precious ‘Made in Italy’ values and demonstrating that our country is on the road to recovery”. With these words, Azimut|Benetti Group Vice President Giovanna Vitelli announced the restart of production in the company’s shipyards.  Being ready to return immediately to full-time capacity, with increased shifts to make up for the lost weeks of production, is merely the tip of the iceberg of the organisational and commercial strategy put into place that has enabled this to happen. Ten days into an easing of lockdown conditions, as Italy cautiously searches its way forward, Azimut|Benetti Group management reflect with satisfaction upon how they were able to employ the group’s trademark dynamism, creativity and innovation to adapt to the challenging situation of the past months. “We never stopped” explains Marco Valle, CEO of Azimut Yachts. “In fact, during lockdown, our international standing held us in good stead, allowing us to close contracts amounting to 30 million euro in orders, helped in no small way by our proactivity in geographic areas not yet affected by the pandemic. This enabled us to continue with our exports which is, of course, a key lever for Italy’s economy. At Azimut Yachts we also ran 17 interactive online courses on subjects ranging from technical to marketing and sales, and these involved 236 people throughout Europe, the Middle East and the Far East.”  Franco Fusignani, CEO at Benetti, expresses similar satisfaction: “It hasn’t been easy, but we managed to keep business going with no serious setbacks. Thanks to our facilities being located in different regions of Italy, we were even able to continue with production focussed on April and May deliveries and at the same time ensure maximum protection levels for our workers through the adoption of all the safety procedures, enabling us not to have any Covid cases at all. Our refitting company Lusben closed a number of contracts to take the total number of boats being managed to 46, as well as providing accommodation and support to captains and crews in Livorno. On top of this, we ran 15 training webinars for leading brokerage houses around the world.  The enduring assets of the Azimut|Benetti Group created the foundation for this success: strong, prestigious brands, a solid commercial structure with a deep-rooted level of trust among its clients and a history of continuous investment, not only in the area of production but also in digital technology and working practices.  This commitment to the digital landscape made the development of the Azimut Yachts Virtual Lounge, an innovative new digital platform, possible in record time. Launched in the first week of May as a hub of technical, inspirational and training materials, it will also host the inaugural Azimut Yacht e-Boat Show from 27 to 30 May, featuring Live Chat sessions and one-to-one video appointments with sales and technical specialists from the shipyard.  The return to full capacity has been aided by a six-week process behind the scenes to ensure the safety of all employees, working closely with union representatives who have described it as “an innovative and forward-thinking example that sets the bar for other companies”.  As Italy looks towards an unusual and uncertain summer, there are positive signs of the country’s creative and productive renaissance with the launch of the much-anticipated Magellano 25 Metri and Benetti Oasis 40 Metri, completed in record time despite the challenges of the past months.

Azimut-Benetti Group New CEO

The Vitelli family and the Azimut Benetti SpA Board of Directors are pleased to announce an important change in the Company’s top management team.  On September 1, 2020, Franco Fusignani will hand over responsibility for the Benetti Division, at the age of 75.  Marco Valle, who remains in charge of the Azimut Division, will take on the role of Group CEO with full responsibility for both Divisions to ensure integrated business management. This decision will encourage an organic and unified approach to business management, benefiting effectiveness, rapid response and efficiency. The intention to preserve the specific characteristics and values of each brand, whose distinct identities form the basis of the Group’s success, will clearly remain a core target.  Franco Fusignani will continue to sit on the Board of Azimut Benetti after September 1, providing his 50 years of working experience and offering all the support needed to ensure efficient management of the integrated business, the diverse product ranges, the separation of the two brands’ marketing and after-sales services, and the strengthening of their position on the market.  Paolo Vitelli, Azimut Benetti Group Chairman, commented: “Marco Valle, who joined the company 25 years ago, has the full support of the Vitelli family and the Group’s Board of Directors in this new challenge, which he will no doubt rise to with the same spirit of success that has been a distinctive feature of his work, first as Azimut Yachts sales director and for the last four years as CEO of the Azimut division.  We would like to thank Franco for the great work he has done and continues to do in Benetti, and for his continued future presence in the Group. This continuity is thought to be important to tackle the new challenges of an evolving market and generational change in the current management team.”

Azimut Launches Virtual Lounge and E-Boat Show

Innovation takes many forms. In a world in which isolation has become the norm and almost every major event around the world has been cancelled, the desire to create a meaningful platform to bring the yachting community together was the impetus behind two new initiatives developed by Azimut Yachts: the e-Boat Show series and the Azimut Yacht Virtual Lounge. The inaugural e-Boat Show, ran from 27 to 30 May, provided an opportunity for yacht owners and boating enthusiasts to attend a digital event that replicates many of the key features of a conventional boat show. In addition to product exhibitions, visitors could take part in Live Chat sessions with Azimut Yacht sales managers and experts. They where also available for scheduled one-to-one video calls in which clients, with the support of their local dealer, can discuss specific needs and obtain detailed information in person.  The location for the e-Boat Show is the brand-new Azimut Virtual Lounge, an innovative digital environment designed to ensure the yachting community continues to have instant and constant access to the Azimut Yacht world and its industry-leading products, technology and vision.  At a time when social distancing and enforced seclusion have served to make people miss and appreciate their passions more than ever, the Virtual Lounge offers a welcome hub for all lovers of the yachting world. It will enable users to experience the Azimut Yachts world through instant access to a wealth of aspiration and informative material such as virtual tours, extensive technical information and both informative and inspiring videos by means of a simple click.  Other features include in-depth articles, live events, behind-the scenes videos and insights into topics ranging from designers to cutting-edge technological solutions.  Whilst both the Azimut Virtual Lounge and the e-Boat Show series spring from re-examining traditional practices and the need to adapt to a situation where meeting in person and travelling to events is suddenly not possible, both initiatives reflect Azimut Yacht’s ongoing commitment to sustainability. By creating these digital focal points for the global yachting community, the company not only strengthens its bond with clients and sea lovers around the world, but also takes another step forward in its drive to create a greener, safer environment for future generations.

CRN Instagram Account is a Winner

CRN, the historic shipyard and Ferretti Group brand specialising in building fully custom yachts, has been named a 2020 Muse Creative Awards Silver Winner in the Social Media category for its Instagram account. This coveted prize, established by International Awards Associate Inc. to champion creative brand excellence around the globe, is testament to the extraordinary inventiveness and creative range of CRN’s Instagram presence. Curated by Arachno Digital Agency, the channel uses a modern, engaging language to express the brand’s essence and heritage. It embodies the values of the passionate professionals who dedicate their lives to turning original ideas into one-off yachts that are genuine works of art.  Exquisitely crafted words paired with meticulously selected and specially created images and video are the winning recipe for a communication effort that has actively engaged the community and built real empathy. Every day, the page tells the story of the on-board experience and the unique, exhilarating world of CRN. Here, ideas, vision and savoir faire come together to make masterpieces that reflect and celebrate their owners’ personality.  The Instagram account concept is inspired by the brand’s nautical know-how and elegant style. CRN is in constant pursuit of perfection, total flexibility and impeccable attention to detail, to bring owners’ dreams and desires to life. These values, allied to peerless technical mastery and in-depth expertise, are what inspire the yard’s project managers, engineers, project architects, interior designers and accomplished craftspeople every day. And what they create is something absolutely exclusive.

Ferretti Group Consolidates Presence in the USA

Ferretti Group announces a $15 million investment to purchase a service shipyard in Fort Lauderdale, Florida to increase the strategic presence of Ferretti Group America.  The facility covers an area of approximately 4,000 square meters and includes five docks and a combination of indoor and open-air spaces where, thanks to the adjoining marina, service, refits and deliveries are carried out for U.S. customers, who consider Ft. Lauderdale the main hub of American yachting.  The area, located within the Lauderdale Marine Center, also includes a warehouse for the storage of materials and spare parts for American customers' yachts. Thanks to a total stock value of over $1.2 million, the Ferretti Group is capable to increase efficiency of spare parts delivery and services arriving from its Italian shipyards.  "We are very proud to present the new investment plan in the US, a fast-growing market that gave us great satisfaction last year" commented Alberto Galassi, CEO of the Ferretti Group. "The orders for 2020 confirm this trend, certifying the love that our US customers have for the Group's brands. The decision to further increase our refit and post-sales services for our customers is the cornerstone of this investment and demonstrates Ferretti Group's dynamism and desire to consolidate its presence in the USA, making Fort Lauderdale our armament hub in the American continent".

Formula is Back

Formula is actively building boats again, after being closed for five weeks due to the Indiana Stay-At-Home order. With social distancing and safety in mind, Formula is working together to once again make boat dreams a reality! Formula will keep us posted on what is happening this spring and summer, but it is refreshing to get back to creating, designing, and build pleasure boats on the water today. 

Horizon 6D Resin Infusion

Founded in 2000, Atech Composites is the composites facility for the Horizon Group and also is the only FRP component manufacturer in Asia to provide total solution for large-scale FRP component manufacturing.  Operating from a 23,000 square-meter, ISO-certified lamination facility serviced by over 210 employees, Atech is the strongest technical support to the Horizon Group. The R&D team plays a major role in Horizon’s FRP products, researching the latest technology, validating material choices, developing effective production processes and integrating cross-industry technology towards innovation in yachting.  Atech is the first licensee in Asia to utilize the patented SCRIMP (Seemann’s Composites Resin Infusion Molding Process) process from TPI Composites. In recent years, Atech has developed 6D infusion technology and obtained an invention patent. 6D infusion with automatic vacuum infusion equipment allows FRP hulls over 140-feet to be easily constructed and guarantees even resin distribution throughout the laminate for lighter and stronger hulls.

Pearl Virtual Boat Show a Success

With a host of innovative virtual initiatives launched over the past two months, Pearl Yachts is leading the way in bringing the international yachting community together at a time of crisis. From live-streamed yacht tours hosted by Pearl Yachts partners to 360-degree online views of the best Pearl models, the yard’s dynamic online presence has been met with unprecedented success, welcoming over 65.000 impressions and 9.000 interactions.  Launching a series of new digital initiatives in March, British shipyard Pearl Yachts is proudly leading the way in the growing trend of online innovation in yachting as the world adapts to a new normal. Over the past two months, the team at Pearl Yachts has kept the joy of yachting alive with the Pearl Yachts Virtual Boat Show as well as dynamic webpages to explore Pearl models like never before and exciting social content. With many countries now reaching a positive turning point in the pandemic, the ongoing results are a step into the future.

Riviera Apprentice Graduates Kick-start Career

Australia’s largest luxury motor yacht builder Riviera, based on the Gold Coast, continues its commitment to fostering excellence by encouraging its apprentice graduates to participate in a new initiative aimed at enhancing their skills and career pathways.  Over a six-month term, graduates of the Riviera apprenticeship program team up with a mentor at Riviera’s Coomera production facility as part of Study Gold Coast’s Kickstart program.  During the current CV-19 restrictions, graduates work with mentors either onsite observing social distancing requirements, or via electronic correspondence or mobile communications where available. The course director facilitates the program using a video link.  The Kickstart program is designed to further develop Riviera’s newest tradespeople and fast track their professional, commercial and business skills.  According to Adam Houlahan, Riviera’s Safety and Training Manager, the program paves the way for new tradespeople to advance their careers with continued learning.  “It keeps them on a path where they continue to challenge themselves, to keep growing and developing skills,” Mr Houlahan says.  “It is an investment in themselves and their future, whilst at the same time there is great personal pride that they are taking on projects that add value to our business.”  Through the program, each participant will work closely with their Riviera team mentor to work on a special project that aligns with their industry skills and capabilities.  It provides a tremendous opportunity for graduates to engage with the highly experienced Riviera team across multiple levels and includes vital interaction with key team leaders.  The Kickstart program gives Riviera’s newest tradespeople an insight into what it takes to be an outstanding Riviera team member and it accelerates their learning opportunities across the complete manufacturing process.  The program also reinforces the culture of excellence that supports every motor yacht that Riviera proudly creates, with more than half of the company’s annual production being exported to every continent of the world.

Riviera Living Aboard Better Then a Dream

Inspired by the majesty of their new Riviera 68 Sports Motor Yacht, Living the Life, Regan and Sandra Fleming last year took their 11-year-old son out of the classroom and into the ‘school of South Pacific life’.  What ensued was a trip of a lifetime lasting almost six months aboard Australia’s largest luxury motor yacht builder’s legendary blue-water cruiser.  Perhaps the best way to describe Regan and Sandra Fleming’s journey through the Pacific is a half-year-long fishing trip.  Together with Joel’s school tutor Dan and his partner Krissi, the Flemings sailed in May last year from the Gold Coast to New Caledonia, through Vanuatu and Fiji. In five-and-a-half months they clicked over 7,000 nautical miles, 553 engine hours and 1,600 generator hours.  In fact, it’s the Flemings’ third Riviera, having dipped their toes in the water first with a 51 Flybridge before graduating to a 56 Flybridge.  For Sandra, the fishing gets better on each Riviera they purchase. But it was the tease of an extended Pacific voyage that really called for a larger vessel, one with greater ocean-going capabilities.  The Riviera 68 (and 72 Sports Motor Yacht) boasts a hull designed in partnership with Dutch naval architects, Mulder Design. These hulls are extremely capable at varying speeds and in a wide range of offshore conditions. On Living the Life, Regan opted for gyro stabilisation.  The real offshore test though was the 780 nautical mile passage from the Gold Coast to Nouméa, including running the generator 24 hours a day, fuel usage worked out at a little over five litres per nautical mile at a rate of 8.5 knots.  From Nouméa, Living the Life cruised south and dropped anchor in the gin-clear lagoon waters of the Isle of Pines – known as ‘the closest island to paradise’ – for five weeks before heading to Vanuatu via the Loyalty Islands and Ouvea.  They were also short-handed in Port Vila, this time with just Sandra and Regan aboard and, as one might imagine, with one of them fighting a ‘decent black marlin’.  Designed with docking – not fishing – in mind, the 68 Sports Motor Yacht features an EJS joystick located at the forward and aft helms and in the cockpit. The joystick’s location facilitates clear communication between the driver and the deckhand.  North of Port Vila the Flemings arrived at the volcanic island of Ambrym, then the narrow strip of Pentecost Island where they missed the land-diving season by an inch, and from there to the island of Santo. Snorkelling at Million Dollar Point, where the Americans dumped all their surplus army equipment at the end of World War II, proved to be a remarkable history lesson for Joel. For Sandra, watching her son learn in the great outdoors was special.  While the saloon doubled as a classroom, the capaciousness of the 68 Sports Motor Yacht ensured room aplenty for everyone, says Sandra.  With the five on board, Regan says they could have had another five and not noticed.  Earlier this year, Joel returned to the classroom at Hamilton Island and, for now, Living the Life has remained in local waters. But with the knowledge the Flemings have gained from their Pacific adventure, Sandra admits that anything’s possible.

Steeler Celebrates Tenth Anniversary

In August 2010 Steeler Yachts was founded and the first model, the Steeler NG50, was presented at the HISWA in Water boat show in Ijmuiden, The Netherlands. Steeler’s mission was to build Steel motoryachts to run at semi-displacement speed equipped with multiple innovations to make life easy on board. During the first boat show, two NG50’s were sold and an exciting journey had started. Ten years later, Steeler Yachts has sold 101 yachts, has won three European Powerboat of the Year awards and, most important of all, has an unrivaled customer loyalty rating of 100%. The fact that not a single Steeler client moved over to another brand, is unique for any shipyard and a very promising foundation for the next decade.

Sunreef Virtual Conference with Nico Rosberg

Sunreef Yachts hosted an exclusive virtual press conference focusing on the shipyard’s new range of Eco catamarans. As company Founder and President Francis Lapp and Research and Desgin Director Nicolas Lapp shared some important updates, sustainability expert and Formula 1 champion Nico Rosberg joined the conference online as special guest. Initiated with the first electric Sunreef 50 and Sunreef 60, the Sunreef Yachts Eco catamaran range is a complete, 360 degree concept for eco cruising.

Sunseeker Announces Reopening and Extended Warranty

Sunseeker is pleased to announce that it is implementing a phased return to work for all its employees starting as early as next week.  Given the complexity of operations, it is necessary to bring employees back in a controlled manner that will allow us to move to full production over the coming few weeks. The phased approach allows us to ensure that all the safety measures we have put in place work seamlessly, providing employees with the confidence that they are coming back to a safe place of work.  Re-starting production will allow us to deliver those boats previously in build and the many on order from across the world. Owners are keen to take delivery of boats previously ordered so they can use this season and a catch up plan will attempt to reduce the backlog.  A great deal of work has been taking place to ensure the safety of employees, suppliers, visitors and finished boats. Working in close cooperation with all departments, Sunseeker’s in-house Health & Safety team has defined strict protocols, working practices and guidelines for all employees to support the very safest environment, wherever they work within the business.  As well as the issuing and guidance of how to use PPE, factories have been laid out with one-way systems and wide thoroughfares to ensure social distancing is maintained. Meanwhile, additional hygiene and cleaning stations have been introduced companywide to ensure equipment and tools can be methodically cleaned whilst boats are sanitized thoroughly at every stage of production and then ‘deep-cleaned’ again prior to hand-over.  Separately, all Warranty and Parts functions will be fully operational during June, ensuring that customers receive the service they require as they return to using their boats. In support of their inability to use their boat over recent weeks, Sunseeker is offering an extended two month factory warranty for any boat in warranty as of 23/03/20 – an industry first.  Commenting on the announcement, Andrea Frabetti, CEO said “We are excited to be getting back to work. Our goal now is to achieve safe efficient production over the coming weeks so we can deliver boats to our customers who understandably, are keen to get afloat this summer. In parallel, our new model development programme continues at a pace in order that we can offer the very latest range which is on course to double in size by 2022. I’d like to personally thank our clients, employees and suppliers for their patience during this enforced period of shutdown. We are fortunate to be able to return to work, to do what we love and deliver on the passion we all have for this industry. Now, more than ever, the country needs us to do what we do best which will help deliver exports and support the economy. As a proud UK manufacturer, we are eager to play our own small part in returning it to prosperity.”

Tiara Adds Member to Sales and Marketing Team

S2 Yachts, parent company of both Tiara Yachts and Sport, added Dena Meiste to the sales and marketing team as its marketing coordinator.  In her role as marketing coordinator, Dena will provide support to the sales and marketing department with its day-to-day functions and assist with communications, website management, photo and video shoots, branded merchandise and design projects.  Dena brings more then ten years of marketing and communications experience to Tiara, having worked previously in similar capacities for Pepperdine University, Depual University and Westridge School.  While at Pepperdine, she helped manage media relations efforts at the 2013 and 2015 NCAA Tournament Regional Rounds at Staples Center in Los Angeles.  The West Michigan native most recently resided in Tennessee and was emplyed by University School of Nashville.

Viking at Orange Beach Billfish Classic

Summer tournaments have kicked off! The recent Orange Beach Billfish Classic started the season and featured mostly Vikings on the leaderboard. Pearl, a Viking 48 owned by Andy Yarborough, weighed the only blue marlin of the tournament. The 603.2-pound fish won the division for captain Shawn Clemons Jr. and the Pearl crew. The Orange Beach Billfish Classic is the first of six sanctioned events in the prestigious Gulf Coast Triple Crown Championship. Born 2 Run, a regular contender on the Triple Crown circuit, earned 1st Place honors in the Release category. The 72 is owned by Dana and Lisa Foster and captained by Myles Colley. Third Place Release went to the Viking 61 Restless. Restless also claimed 1st Place Wahoo with a 47.6 pound 'hoo as well as Second and Third Place Dolphin. The Viking 52 Code Blue took 2nd and 3rd Place Tuna with148.2- and 131.4-pound fish. Shawn Park's boat also claimed the top dolphin with a 42.6-pound bull.

Viking at MBGFC Memorial Day Tournament

Quick Time, a Viking 70, claimed 2nd Place Release boat at the Mobile Big Game Fishing Club's Memorial Day Tournament. Robert Burroughs released a pair of blue marlin for the honors. Robert also weighed the heaviest tuna with a 185.8-pound fish. Maria Natal, fishing on the 62 Da' Grits, released a blue and weighed the winning wahoo (76.2 pounds) to take the Top Lady Angler award. Second Place Dolphin (29.6 pounds) went to Mike Shavez on the Viking 52 SaltShaker. Fishing on the Viking 92 A Work Of Art, Brandon Favre was the 2nd Place Junior Angler with his blue marlin release.

Wajer Summer Care Ready for Action

Hisham Lalmy, manager Summer Care at Wajer, is busy preparing for the new season. As soon as the areas in France and Spain open up again, the Wajer Care team is ready to go. The crew has been trained and the Wajer App has been updated. The Amsterdam hub is also fully operational. “We could not be prepared any better. As far as I am concerned, everything can open up right now. My team, currently consisting of 45 people, can hardly wait”, says Hisham Lalmy, manager Wajer Summer Care.

Zeelander Expands Existing Shipyard

Zeelander shipyard in Groot-Ammers, the Netherlands, is undergoing an expansion in response to growing demand for its boats. This will also allow the company to prepare the ground for the development of new models.  “We are expanding in several phases, and the first one is now complete,” explained Sietse Koopmans, Founder and Chairman of the family-owned Zeelander Yachts. “We have added over 15 meters in length of extra work floor and a new section of 30x15 meters for a total of 450 square meters. The space is now enough to assemble at least five boats at the same time. The area for winter storage is increased, so we will be able to accommodate more yachts from clients that want us to take care of their yachts.”  The next phases of the expansion include new office spaces and extra work floor for the shipyard.  “We have a healthy order book. Therefore, we decided to develop the facility step by step, without jump-like transitions,” added Koopmans. “We take this very seriously and of course keep a close eye on the current situation. If necessary, we can change our plans without taking financial risks.”  Zeelander Yachts’ current range includes three models: the Z44, Z55 and Z72. The company is developing ideas to expand the range.

No comments:

Post a Comment