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By SuperyachtNews in collaboration with Oceanco

To Tranquility and beyond

Shipyards always aim to use the latest technology during a new-build project, so what happens to Oceanco vessels when they are ready for a transformation?

 105-metre H3 (left) and 117-metre Infinity (middle) with its support vessel Intrepid  (right)

Oceanco has been at the forefront of innovation and craftsmanship in the superyacht industry for more than three decades, designing some of the most iconic superyachts in the fleet. However, as technology moves forward along with changing regulations and client demands, keeping these vessels up to date can be a challenging task.

A competitive brokerage market and limited availability of build slots for top-tier projects are also prompting yacht owners to consider significant upgrades and changes to their existing vessels rather than acquiring new ones. For older yachts, these upgrades can include modernising technical systems to meet contemporary standards of technology, safety, capability and sustainability. The question is, how do you transform an old legend into a modern icon?

At Oceanco, the shipyard operates with a Life Cycle Support service that goes beyond that of a typical refit and instead offers owners a full transformation.

One common thread and important aspect that runs through all Oceanco’s Life Cycle Support (and new-build) projects, is the emphasis on developing a long-term, trusted relationship with its clients, including transparent communication. Another common element is that the very nature of the Life Cycle Support projects requires Oceanco to draw on a toolkit that has been honed for complex challenges. The Dutch shipyard’s ultimate goal is to extend the life cycle and improve the long-term performance of each of these yachts, whether that’s in terms of facilities, aesthetics, technical capability or sustainability. This extends beyond its own fleet to those that have been delivered from elsewhere too.

H3

A recent example of the initiative’s success is the complete rebuild of 105-metre H3. Originally delivered in 2004, the goal of H3 ’s rebuild was to take a highly advanced yacht from two decades ago and make it IMO Tier III compliant, aligning it with the high standards of today’s new builds. Although much of the yacht’s original hull remains, nearly every other element – both technical and aesthetic – has been completely transformed and modernised. The project represents the first instance of a yacht being recreated as a contemporary vessel, but also benefits from a reduced completion timeline due to less time spent on engineering and hull construction, while still maintaining Oceanco’s pedigree.

This approach has also led to a reduction in production and operational emissions. Figures suggest that the reuse of steel and aluminium for H3 saved around 2,000 tonnes of carbon, equal to planting 10 hectares of forest per year for 20 years (assuming a service life of 20 years). Data from Oceanco’s R & D team also shows that thanks to the reduction in nitrous oxide emissions through its more efficient engines, H3 ’s operational footprint has been reduced by at least 60 per cent. When using an alternative fuel such as HVO, with its lower CO2 emissions, its operational footprint is reduced by almost 90 per cent compared to before its rebuild.

Now, another yacht has entered the Zwijndrecht shipyard for a Life Cycle Support project having sailed the seas for a decade. At 92 metres LOA, Tranquility will undergo a range of enhancements, including a new interior for improved comfort and design, a stern extension to maximise space and a full repaint to refresh its exterior. Tranquility’s AVIT and NAVCOM systems will also be upgraded to the latest technology for enhanced connectivity and navigation.

The work being undertaken for Tranquility’s refit differs slightly from the rebuild of H3, but there have been considerations to its environmental impact too. Some of the on-board materials are being removed and upcycled as part of Oceanco’s circular economy approach to Life Cycle Support, including its teak decking. When discussing upcoming Life Cycle Support projects with clients, sustainability is always at the forefront of the team’s mind. There are a large number of upgrades and evolutions that Life Cycle Support can make which allow vessels to reduce their impact on the environment. And the benefits are not just to the conscience, but to operational costs too.

Tranquility

There is no typical journey for Life Cycle Support – some yachts and their owners are already well acquainted with the shipyard as it is continually in touch with its fleet. Others approach Oceanco for a Life Cycle Support project because they appreciate that the builder is used to tackling complex projects, such as the rebuild of H3.  Maintaining the pedigree of an Oceanco is a particular draw for some owners; they value that nobody knows their yacht better than the people who built it. They are reassured that the quality of work that will go into a Life Cycle Support project is as high as with a new-build project. The inclusive pricing approach also provides a lower-risk proposition to Life Cycle Support clients compared to conventional refit charging systems, where costs can quickly mount up for unexpected extras.

Creating and maintaining a yacht takes a village, and to execute projects with precision, the shipyard has to harmonise with the companies around it. On any given day, hundreds of people from dozens of companies can be found on site at Oceanco. Some of these companies have their own dedicated offices at its Zwijndrecht premises, which is being developed into an innovation hub. Life Cycle Support projects often involve various types of work carried out simultaneously, with new tasks emerging once the yacht arrives at the yard.

Oceanco has launched the Oceanco Co-maker Unlimited initiative for its trusted subcontractors, where subcontractors’ prior knowledge of the new-build projects brings added benefits to Life Cycle Support. This guarantees that work is completed to Oceanco’s quality standards, providing reassurance for both Oceanco and its clients. Having a full spectrum of subcontractors nearby is a significant advantage, ensuring even simple specialist jobs are done quickly and efficiently, saving the client time and travel costs.

As a builder of highly complex projects, Oceanco can tap into a vast pool of experience, expertise and capacity for its Life Cycle Support projects while maintaining a distinct approach to the work that is required. For refit projects, the need for speed and flexibility on a project that could be five weeks or even five days is greater than on a new build. A new-build project follows a cycle of planning, analysis and execution, whereas a refit will often experience emergent works, no matter how much planning ahead is done. This means that Oceaonco’s Life Cycle Support project managers must have the troubleshooting capabilities to make quick decisions and weigh up a challenging situation at short notice.

Considering the scarcity of new-build slots, and the enhanced operational benefits and extensive knowledge required to rebuild an old yacht to modern standards, Oceanco’s ambition is to inspire owners with landmark projects like Tranquility and H3. Not only does this present the gift of time and add to the ownership experience, but it also provides peace of mind through expert craftsmanship. Through this approach, the iconic yachts of yesteryear have the potential to become the new faces of tomorrow.

Profile links

Oceanco

TRANQUILITY
OCEANCO 2013 2014 Delivered
91.50m 14.50m 4.08m 2998
Oceanco
Winch Design
OceancoAzure Yacht Design & Naval Architecture

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