5 Jun 2014
HISWA Holland Yachting Group Press Tour: Day Four
Day Four of the HISWA Yacht Group Press Tour included a creative session with Vripack, a close look at Hakvoort's in-build projects, and a visit to HollandJachtbouw that took in the in-build J-Class J8.
A small group of this morning took the short drive to Holland Jachtbouw for an update on the work the yard is busy with, including the expansion of their J Class series. The J8 is currently in build on site, with a quick tour proving she should be a timely delivery for this time next year. The yard also featured the original Abeking built yawl Asgard undergoing a refit for her new owner as well as their recently launched 45m Heureka (ex YIII).
Chatting with the MD, Roeland Franssens, he shared that similar to the wider industry, "in general, requests are down so we're trying to get closer to new clients and dive deeper into new projects. However, we're very excited with the new hybrid system we're rolling out, which will see a very large reduction in power used on board"'
With the new addition of two experienced sales team members, the group is hoping to increase business in the coming years. However, even with talk of emerging markets, they shared that the majority of interest they are seeing remain from Europe and the US.
Franssens commented, "we can do anything the client requests (including a new focus on motoryachts). The only thing we haven't done yet is composites, and this is something we're exploring. With positive signs coming for the market, we are confident for the future."
Visiting Hakvoort offered a refreshing take on the traditional shipyard tour. Contrary to the established industry practice of imposing blanket silence on active projects, the yard allowed journalists to get a real insight into its current project, 61m Golden Age. The Sinot-designed yacht will be launched in spring 2015, at which point a 63m will be brought in to begin construction. Due to launch in 2017, the hull is already underway off-site.
The minuscule gap between superstructure and roof indicates how the yard has reached its size limit.
The entire HISWA team reconvened for the always innovative Vripack tour. Another yard tour wasn't on the menu though as we gathered in the heart of Amsterdam and took to the streets for one of the VriThink! Trend walks.
The team created the VriThink! Concept, developed in tandem with The Superyacht Group, in 2012 and have accumulated over 10,000 photos a year with their walks, gathering fresh design and innovative concepts to bring back to their offices. Owner, Marnix Hoekstra shared "to innovate at this scale, we need to create ideas because there is more happening around us in other luxury industries, such as jets and automotive, so we need to get outside of the office to create a new generation of thinking".
Following the trend walk, it was on to a river boat cruise, with a pit stop to do some group graffiti and let the creative juices fly. Then on to the Rijks Museum for a tour sponsored by Pon Power. Finalling some networking with fellow members of the Holland Yachting Group before drinks and canapes on board another cruise and the penultimate dinner party, with private screening of the new Anne Frank play at the Theater Amsterdam.
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