Earlier this year Oyster Yachts announced the build of the Oyster 118, the largest yacht to be drawn up by the yard to date.

SuperyachtNews.com caught up with CEO David Tydeman at the Monaco Yacht Show to discuss the builder's increasing involvement with the superyacht sector.


“We are delighted that the new Oyster 118 is being built in Britain, at our own Southampton facility,” said Tydeman, explaining that the yacht will go into the shed in April 2016, joining two Oyster 745s, two 825s and one 885 that are currently under construction in the larger of the company’s two yards.

The announcement of the Oyster 118, a partnership with Humphreys Yacht Design, came during a period that saw other sailing yacht builders increasing the size of their own fleets, namely Nautor’s Swan, which recently launched the first Swan 115. But Tydeman does not perceive a threat of competition, as he believes the yards serve different markets.


Oyster 118

“Oyster clients want comfort and world cruising, whereas Swan or Southern Wind clients are often more focused on performance,” he explained. “We often say that if a client is still deciding between an Oyster or a Southern Wind, then they don’t yet know what they want.”

For the new project, the yard has invested in tooling and additional construction facilities to enable the build of further 118s overlapping with the first. “We could produce up to four 118s before summer 2020," added Tydeman. “If we sold four more over the next six or seven years I would be delighted.”

                                            CEO David Tydeman on board S/Y Penelope

While this is an important step into the superyacht market for Oyster, Tydeman confirmed that there are no plans to go any bigger. “After this size you need to move away from composite, and our core skill is doing things out of moulds. We are not chasing lightweight, not chasing carbon and there is a limit to where you can take that,” he said, adding that the yard is, however, committed to their refit division, which recently completed work on the likes of Leopard, Hetairos, Mari-Cha III and Cambria
 
The launch of the first Oyster 118 is anticipated for December 2017 before undergoing sea trials in the Solent and a spring 2018 handover.