Since the inception of the new-look IYC in 2015, the company has very visibly gone from strength to strength – and with eight yacht sales completed in the first quarter of 2018, a tangible return is certainly materialising from the company’s measured expansion.
IYC has either introduced the buyer or represented the seller (or both) in three of the six 50m+ brokerage sales for the year thus far – 57.9m Skyfall, 55.4m Turquoise and 54m Starfire – and while CEO, Stefanos Macrymichalos described the recent Miami Yacht Show as “disappointing”, he is rounding his troops for an impactful Palm Beach Boat Show, at which the firm will be exhibiting 11 yachts under promising market conditions.
“We really are noticing a lot more activity this year in comparison to last year,” Macrymichalos said, in an exclusive conversation with SuperyachtNews. “The US is definitely still driving the market forward at the moment – we’ve sold bigger boats over here in the US than in Europe – but I don’t have any doubts that Europe will follow this.”
IYC has noticed a surge in activity from first-time yacht buyers, which is very promising for the market. “These are guys who have chartered and now want to go into ownership,” he explained. “It’s a very good indication that people are feeling comfortable about their financial positions and the market’s position.”
“Sellers are becoming a lot more realistic with their prices and buyers are not making extremely low offers like they had been."
Despite assertions from other brokerages that the market has tipped in the favour of the sellers recently, Macrymichalos doesn’t consider this to be accurate and says there is a good balance between a buyer and a seller’s market at the moment. “One thing we have seen is that the sellers are becoming a lot more realistic with their prices and buyers are not making extremely low offers like they had been.
“I think there is more of an overlap in the expectations of both parties which has led to a healthier market. Sellers are seeing opportunities to sell and possibly upgrade, and buyers are being a lot more realistic with their offers.”
Macrymichalos said there has been a real decline in the quality of boats for sale, and that while there are still some great deals to be had, he’s struggling to see how the market is going to correct this issue. The options for buyers who are unable to reach new build pricing levels are few and far between in the current market.
Adverse market conditions affected the progress of IYC’s strategic plan in 2016, but Macrymichalos said the company is back on track, having covered some lost ground, and he is confident that they will achieve their 2018 goals. The company is making big investments in technology at the moment, such as market intelligence tools for brokers, proprietary management software and video production – all of which will massage the company’s service proposition in favour of, in Macrymichalos’ words, “next generation, tech-savvy clients”.
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