Following the news on 7 February 2018 that Oyster Yachts, a stalwart of the British and global yachting communities, had gone into administration with KPMG, Oyster Yachts has now announced that it is under new ownership and that a new management team has been instated. It is hoped that the acquisition of Oyster Yachts will be able to secure the future of over 400 jobs. The sale of Oyster to Richard Hadida, the entrepreneur founder of global software business Evolution Gaming Group, ensures the business can be relaunched and, hopefully, be secured for the future.
The joint administrators have confirmed that the sale of Oyster Yachts includes the assets and business of Oyster Marine Limited, and the assets of Oyster Marine Holdings Limited including its shareholdings in certain companies within the Oyster Group.
“It has been my privilege to sail an Oyster Yacht for some years. I fell in love with Oyster, the yacht, the events and more importantly the Oyster family,” comments Richard Hadida, Oyster’s new owner. “My passion for the brand has driven my decision to acquire the business. The Oyster brand is central to the yachting world.”
The new ownership will allow the company to complete works on a number of on-going projects, including two 37.45m Oyster 118s, that were put on hold when Oyster previously went into administration. The first Oyster 118 will become Oyster’s flagship vessel upon delivery later this year, the second is scheduled for delivery in 2020.
“I firmly believe that we must save this prestigious British yacht builder and continue to nurture and grow the Oyster Group for the long term,” continues Hadida. “My investment in Oyster is not merely a hobby. Oyster needs to be a sustainable business. Hard, quick decisions need to be taken. There is considerable work to be done to turn the business around and I believe with the support of Kim, Beck and Paul, who bring unique credentials to the team, not least the hugely successful turnaround of Sunseeker, we will achieve this.”
In addition to taking over the ownership of Oyster, Hadida has established a new management team to lead the future of the company. Hadida himself will act as interim CEO of the company. Hadida will be supported by Kim Stubbs, interim chief operating officer, who helped spearhead the successful transformation of Sunseeker from a loss-making position back to profit in just 24 months, Beck Bridgen as acting CFO and Paul Adamson who will act as chief transformation officer.
“The opportunity to work with Richard and a brand such as Oyster is extremely exciting,” comments Stubbs. “For the sailing community, Oyster is truly the symbol of leading yacht design. I firmly believe that we can use the experience of the Sunseeker turnaround to deliver fast and sustainable results at Oyster and we look forward to starting today to deliver on the clear promise of this remarkable sailing marque.”
David Tydeman, former CEO of Oyster Yachts, comments: “Congratulations to Richard Hadida with his take-over of Oyster Yachts, I’m sure he’ll do a great job of taking Oyster through the next chapter of its successful history – thanks to all the team for the fantastic achievements of the last chapter/decade – we’re handing Richard a great range of seven new models, a more cohesive and global brand identity than when we started as summed up by Andrew Winch at the Dusseldorf Show, ‘Oyster is the explorer brand of yachting’.”
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