SuperyachtNews spoke to MCM Newport to gain an insight into the current mindset of the owners with whom they work and the yachts that they manage, from delayed deliveries and altered itineraries to their outlook on the future.
Increased communication is prevalent between different sectors of the superyacht industry at present, demonstrating a united force to minimise the impacts of coronavirus on this niche industry. However, it is the current and future superyacht owners, who invariably prefer privacy and confidentiality, whose willingness to engage with yachting will determine a large proportion of what the true impact will be.
Fortunately, according to MCM Newport, the current doubts and fears of their clients are on a more personal note and less directed at the industry as a whole. “There are not particularly doubts or fears, simply disappointment at having summer plans so disrupted, but of course sympathetic to the global situation and the need to stay safe,” says Peter Wilson, co-founder of MCM Newport.
“We have had very keen interest in new projects, and in particular, those wishing to explore new technologies, low emissions and ecological approaches..." - Peter Wilson, Co-founder - MCM Newport
In fact, the yacht management company has reported new enquiries and a new type of request from clients. “We have had very keen interest in new projects and, in particular, those wishing to explore new technologies, low emissions and ecological approaches - in both sailing and motoryachts,” Wilson adds, further acknowledging the genuine existence of a new generation of ‘green’ owners – something the industry has begun catering to, but must continue to develop.
The yacht management aspect of the business has understandably changed over the past few months, with itineraries being adapted or totally paused due to current travel restrictions. “We have been faced with a number of unprecedented situations,” says Wilson, explaining the amount of work required to attempt to stay current with the ever-shifting and fast-moving government regulations in various states, ports and countries. “This has been a big job and assembling this information to relate to our fleet has been very well received by the captains and owners in order to develop a roadmap for the path forward.”
“Our owners have been very understanding and patient based on these unprecedented circumstances..."
In terms of yacht construction, Wilson reports a positive reaction from the owners, despite the industry’s delays globally, due to a limited workforce and various lockdowns still in place; “Our owners have been very understanding and patient based on these unprecedented circumstances. Obviously, there are contracts in place and, in some cases, delivery penalties that can be imposed. However, there are also force majeure clauses to be considered."
MCM Newport’s clients have been entirely reasonable according to Wilson, while naturally wishing to minimise delivery delays. “Most have taken a very sanguine position and more than ever appreciate the benefits of yacht ownership, inasmuch as if we are so stricken in the future, the ability to be on board the yacht, operating as autonomously as possible means one can have a safe-haven," he concludes.
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