With just one of its 21 offices abroad, US-based Denison Super Yachts’ undiluted focus on home soil markets is no secret to success, just a business model sculpted on specialisation, familiarity and ‘know-how’.
But with the clout of the superyacht division snowballing – the firm now has several large listings, such as 72.5m Axioma, 62m Mine Games and 60m Swan on its books – and the US market showing a certain joie de vivre, is it out of the equation to give foreign territories a stab?
“We are exploring some new initiatives at the moment,” Bob Denison, president of the eponymous firm, recently told The Superyacht Report on board Mine Games during the Miami International Boat Show. “One is to establish a partnership with a European brokerage firm, which I think would work very well.”
Denison says the idea would be to share listings, information, market trends, sales data, cruising trends, but also, “The gut feelings of brokers and local knowledge of what’s happening on the docks,” he continued. “It’s tough to figure out what’s happening on the docks of Monaco from an office in Fort Lauderdale. At some point in the next 12 months, we’ll have some significant movement into Europe for sure.”
Despite his intentions, Denison is a firm believer that the US, his bread and butter, will always be the strongest market. “There are about 215,000 UHNWIs in the world and about a third of those people are American,” he continues. “If you look at the top regions for superyacht ownership, the Americans are top of that too – again, controlling about a third of the market.”
But currently, only 0.2 per cent of UHNWIs own a superyacht. “When people ask ‘How is the industry?’ to be honest, I’d say there is a huge untapped market out there and a lot of people who don’t know how great it is to be on a boat. We brokers do a real poor job at that.
“We are just so concerned with fighting each other that we’re missing the notion that there is a huge, huge buying demographic and we’re fighting over a tiny, tiny fragment of it.”
Read the full interview with Bob Denison in The Superyacht Report, issue 177.
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