Beyond the top 10 shipyards, determined by the cumulative LOA of delivered projects over a five-year period, 2018’s rhetoric has focused on falling new build figures and consolidation. Indeed, the data within The Superyacht Annual Report 2018: New Build stands as testament to these phenomena. However, amongst the falling new build figures and the seemingly impenetrable barrier of the top 10, Ocean Alexander, the US focused superyacht builder, has risen a staggering 12 places to 15th in the Top 40 ranking.
It is important to remember that what separates the top 10 yards from the rest of the competition is not, necessarily, the quality of the build – although they are all quality builders – nor is it heritage or the ability to build ‘dreams’, it is their ability to deliver yachts year on year and, in the superyacht market, deliveries beget more deliveries as consumer confidence grows. So, in the case of Ocean Alexander, one bumper year does not a top 10 yard make. Nevertheless, Ocean Alexander’s performance of late is worthy of mention.
Taking 2017 in isolation, Ocean Alexander ranks third in terms of units delivered (7), bested only by Benetti (9), Custom Line (8) and Gulf Craft (8). In terms of the cumulative LOA of its deliveries, Ocean Alexander was the seventh most prolific builder in 2017 with a cumulative LOA of 224.5m, yielding an average vessel size of 32.1m. Having delivered 20 vessels over 30m since its first in 2005, Ocean Alexander has delivered over a third of its 30m-plus fleet in 2017 alone.
If Ocean Alexander’s order book proves to be accurate, then the yards figures will continue to go from strength to strength with it being more than likely that the yard will break into the top 10 in time for The Superyacht Annual Report 2019: New Build. Assuming that the one delivery scheduled for 2017 that didn’t reach fruition is completed in 2018, Ocean Alexander will deliver a further seven vessels in 2018, followed by eight in 2019. Upon the completion of these vessels, Ocean Alexander will have delivered 35 superyachts in total by the close of 2019, nearly triple the 13 30m-plus vessels it had delivered by the end of 2016.
With so much having been said about the demise of the US-based superyacht builders, with excuses varying from the weakening of the euro to domestic attitudes towards conspicuous consumption, Ocean Alexander has managed to find its niche and capitalise on it. The progress of this yard will make interesting reading in years to come. However, it is important to note that a significant portion of Ocean Alexander’s operation is actually based in Taiwan.
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