With the first of the four Swan 115s, Solleone, having just been launched, the Nautor’s Swan yard in Jakobstad, Finland is a hive of activity. Visiting the yard to see this latest addition to the SwanLine, TSO asks about their growing superyacht segment, and what makes their in-house approach so special.

Solleone, the first Swan 115 to be launched. Credit: Nautor’s Swan/E Kjellmann

“The market has grown and Nautor has grown with the market, as we have dramatically increased the size of our products from building 40ft yachts to over 100ft yachts,” says Enrico Chieffi, Vice President of Nautor Group. “In terms of units we are selling more of our big yachts than our smaller yachts at the moment, which says a lot about where the world is going.”

Located on the Gulf of Bothnia in northern Finland, just 300km away from the North Circle, the Nautor’s Swan shipyard in Jakobstad is a far cry from the bright lights of Monaco or Porto Cervo, where many of the Swan clan normally reside. But this is perhaps why the company so frequently refers to their Finnish facilities as their ‘best kept secret’: it is hard to imagine that the stylish and elegant sailing yachts Swan is known for have such raw and humble origins.

Upholding that its biggest asset is the workforce itself, Nautor’s Swan’s real point of difference is that it builds the majority of the yacht’s core platform within the yard’s own facilities. With the infrastructure and expertise to produce their own moulds, laminate their own hulls and construct their own interiors, Swan produces yachts that it can truly say are built in Finland. “This is not just an assembly hall like a lot of the yards are today due to the process of outsourcing becoming more efficient,” explains Chieffi. “We stay faithful to the original way of boat building where we build most of the components ourselves.”

The Nautor's Swan yard in Finland. Credit: Nautor’s Swan/E Kjellmann

The benefits of manufacturing everything in house, according to Chieffi, are clear. “It all comes down to quality,” he says. “You cannot control quality if you outsource things the way you do when you produce them in house. Because of the no compromise on quality philosophy that Swan is based on, to outsource the main components that make up a Swan would be the wrong way to go.”

Being able to sell all four Swan 115s based on just plans is a feat that the company are very proud of and Marcus Jungell, sales director, believes that they are learning a lot with the new projects. “The bigger we go, the more flexibility we have to build on a platform,” he explains. “With the larger yachts are receiving requests for a greater focus on performance.”

With semi-custom 60 to 115ft yachts as their current core business, the last few years have seen Swan significantly developing its superyacht sector. But the brand‘s latest announcement revealed the decision to go back to smaller boats, with the release of a Swan 54. Chieffi, however, assures that this does not mean the end of their superyacht sector’s development. In addition to murmurings last year of a potential Swan 130 in the line up, Chieffi adds that they will have some very important news to announce in September. “We are still thinking about bigger yachts than the 115,” he explains. “Our plan is to unveil a new project at the upcoming 2015 Monaco Yacht Show.”

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