Amongst the total 121 superyachts on display at this year’s Monaco Yacht Show, 69 are brokerage yachts for sale, and the remainder are presented by shipyards — with some yachts both presented by builders and available for sale. It is a fair balance that is in line with previous years.
However, quite interestingly, 70% of these brokerage yachts are also available for charter, which is rather a significant proportion that tends to indicate that the range of superyachts on the charter market is increasing, with more and more vessels having commercial activity whilst on the marketplace for purchase, similar to if a home-owner wanted to reap the benefits of seasonal rentals without losing the opportunity of a sales deal.
This reality actually shows in our total charter fleet. With over 2,250 superyachts for charter, there is no doubt that the prospect of offsetting some, if not all, of the operational costs of a superyacht is gaining more and more traction amongst yachts owners, who see the benefits of having commercially registered vessels also valuable in the ever-changing tax environment applicable to superyachts.
It is interesting to note that this trend coincides with a growing charter business, as many players in the charter market have seemingly experienced this past season. Without necessarily reaching the peaks of the years 2007-8 for all, it nevertheless indicates that the charter market is buoyant, especially given the increase in product offering — evidenced also by the fact that some more superyacht builders have now also taken the path of starting their own charter divisions.
For the end clients, these are interesting signs in many ways : not only does it give them a broader choice, but it should also be a positive evolution to drive yacht owners and operators to strengthen quality crew, service and innovation in order to maintain, if not increase, market share as well as revenue in a marketplace that is getting more and more competitive.
These statistics also highlight, if needed be, that the ratio of crew to guests onboard remains on average 1 for 1 — one crewmember for one guest — as most of the superyachts presented at the Monaco Yacht Show are built with the (maximum) capacity of 12 guests onboard a superyacht.
It is also interesting to note that the largest charter yachts in the show are around the 80-metre mark. Even if the show can now welcome megayachts up to 120m, there is not that many such large megayachts presented in Monaco. Of course, they may not be available for sale or displayed by builders, but it is testimony to the fact that megayachts for charter of such sizes, above 90 or 100m, are in a different league too, a league of their own, above the 1 Million per week threshold.
Last but not least, it is worth realising the potential business generated by the large fleet of super- to megayachts for charter. Taking the €12.2 Million per week (gross) benchmark these vessels account for, if all of them were to charter an average four weeks a year, the revenue would reach close to €50 Million a year for close to 50 superyachts of an average LOA of 51.4 metres.
Now apply that figure to the total charter fleet of 1,500 superyachts with listed rates (of over 2,250), with an average LOA of 35.9m, and make a quick rule of thumb for argument’s sake, even if the sample displayed at the Monaco Yacht Show is only a tiny one: the market potential for 9,000 weeks of charter (4 weeks each) reaches over €591 million. Not that much of a cottage industry anymore, even if the objective to achieve 9,000 weeks of charter per annum remains certainly a long shot; but also an indication of the potential for growth amongst an increasing number of potential clients very keen to embark on a yachting experience starting with a fun, relaxed, enjoyable and memorable charter holiday.