“There must be high risk – in fact, very high risk,” said the late Tom Perkins. “It’s the key to success. If there is no risk, you have already missed the boat.”
Few could argue that Perkins’ attitude to business was not also reflected in his adventurous approach to yacht construction. His ground-breaking Maltese Falcon project not only pushed the boundaries of design and engineering, but at the same time became one of the most iconic and instantly recognisable yachts on the water.
It is one of many reasons why Tom Perkins became such an icon of the industry at a time when superyachting was developing from a small industry in 1992 where there were just 1,500 30m+ yachts delivered, to the burgeoning industry we know today – if we include yachts currently in build, the fleet is now fast approaching 5,500 yachts. At the same time, the average LOA has grown by a staggering amount – in 1990, a 45m yacht would have got you on the list of the 100 largest yachts. Today, 90m barely makes that same list.
So who are the people who have played an instrumental role in propelling our industry forward over the past quarter century? In the unique, limited edition Superyacht25 book – created by The Superyacht Group in partnership with the MB92 shipyard to mark both companies’ 25-year anniversaries – we have curated a list of some of those we consider to be the icons of this industry we all love, presented alongside captivating imagery and little known facts.
Our selection features key figures behind some of the great brokerage houses such as Joff Beckett, Merle Wood, George Nicholson and Nicholas Edmiston, and visionary or prolific owners such as Larry Ellison, Andrey Melnichenko, John Staluppi and Ian McGlinn. We also consider those from the design world who have made a significant mark, from the father of modern yacht design Jon Bannenberg to the always provocative Philippe Starck, and from the established names of Tim Heywood, Andrew Winch, Terence Disdale and Espen Oeino to the second generation of movers and shakers including Luca Bassani, Pascale Reymond and Andrew Langton.
There are icons at the business end too. Among them are the shipyard heads who have helped changed the face of construction such as Henk de Vries, Peter Lürssen, the Huismans and Kommer Damen. We also feature a selection of people from miscellaneous corners of the industry, from Tony Allen and AJ Anderson to Peter Hurzeler and Pepe Garcia-Aubert. In total, we celebrate 56 icons in Superyacht25. The list is not exhaustive, nor is it designed to represent a ranking of those who we consider to have been influential, but it provides a snapshot of some of the names who have proven pivotal in all areas of our industry.
These icons are featured alongside some of the most famous yachts built since 1992, some of the innovations that have transformed superyachts, and incredible images which capture the essence of this extraordinary industry, many of which have never been seen in print before.
The Superyacht25 limited edition book is available to order now – click here to visit the superyacht25.com website and shop.
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