Dip in number of boats at Singapore Yacht Show

Yachtmaker Grand Banks Yachts will debut its Palm Beach 42 at the Singapore Yacht Show. The boat is targeted at Singapore-based buyers and, according to the company, will fit well in berths accessible to Sentosa Cove residents.
Yachtmaker Grand Banks Yachts will debut its Palm Beach 42 at the Singapore Yacht Show. The boat is targeted at Singapore-based buyers and, according to the company, will fit well in berths accessible to Sentosa Cove residents.PHOTO: GRAND BANKS YACHTS

Fall blamed on logistical issues, with show chief saying regional demand for luxury yachts remains strong

There might be fewer boats in Sentosa for the Singapore Yacht Show but demand for luxury yachts in the region is strong.

While last year's show had about 120 boats on display, there are only about 50 yachts listed on the show's website this year.

Mr Andy Treadwell, managing director of the Singapore Yacht Show, said this was due to logistical issues as the number of boats on show are determined by whether owners' craft are in the region. Yachtmakers usually borrow buyers' boats for display at shows.

"The Asian market has been quieter in the last 12 months... but there is still lots of potential and interest in the region. We have lots of Chinese businessmen coming for the show," he said.

Singapore-listed yachtmaker Grand Banks Yachts is setting its eye on the local market.

It will debut its Palm Beach 42 yacht at the show, which will be held at One 15 Marina Club in Sentosa Cove from tomorrow to Sunday.

At 42 feet long, it is the company's smallest boat and is targeted at Singapore-based buyers. While Singapore is facing a dearth of parking space for boats with a months-long waiting list, there are empty berths, accessible only to Sentosa Cove residents, which can fit boats that are about 40 feet long.

Grand Banks chief executive Mark Richards said the company had an eye on these local buyers, adding the Palm Beach 42 would fit well in those berths.

But even a small boat under the Palm Beach brand costs US$1.1 million (S$1.49 million). The boat comes with two double beds, a Bose sound system and teak finishings.

Grand Banks managing director Hank Compton was optimistic about the company's outlook this year, adding that the firm aims to better its sales of 21 boats last year. "There's always demand; people have confidence in Singapore's economy and we have the right product."

While Grand Banks had previously been on the Singapore Exchange watchlist, which is reserved for companies which have reported three years of consecutive losses, it looks to have weathered its financial storms.

It sailed into the black to a net profit of $1.2 million for the first quarter ended Sept 30 last year from a net loss of $1.3 million for the same period a year earlier.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 06, 2016, with the headline 'Dip in number of boats at S'pore Yacht Show'. Print Edition | Subscribe