2016 has been an unmitigated success story for Worth Avenue Yachts. This year, the Palm Beach-based brokerage firm, which was established as recently as 2011 by co-founders Michael Mahan (above left) and Brian Tansey (above right), has made 36 yacht sales representing the buyer or seller; 19 were superyachts ranging from 30–63m in length.

“We had fourteen boats at the show and six of them have been sold”, extols Mahan on his firm’s impact at this year’s Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show. “We put two under contract that weren’t our boats and two that went under contract just before the show that closed the following week, so all in all it was a great show for us.”

The busiest periods of the year for the firm were the four 30m+ sales made in May and the seven that have been finalised since 20 October, which included two Westport 112s and two Westport 130s. Mahan is also expecting to close on four yachts exceeding 36.6m in early 2017.

One may have expected the lower taxation and pro-business manifesto of President-elect Donald Trump to have catalysed some of the later sales in the year, but Mahan says, “I don’t think it was anything to do with Trump’s election because they were all under contract before he came in. His election may have helped us through to the finish line on a few but the sales were well on their way."

“What we did right this year was making sure that we took boats into the show that could sell, instead of taking big boats just for the sake of having big boats in the show. This year we had the size range that fits the market and it made a big difference. When you have a 220ft. boat in the show, there are so few potential buyers, whereas a 120ft. Benetti will bring in multiple offers.”

The superyacht brokerage market needs a steady environment without uncertainties to flourish. Only time will tell if benefits of the incoming President’s leadership will extend beyond its profits to the US buyer, but the brokerage market is certainly seeing some encouraging signs as we move into 2017.


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