The event organized by the Yacht Club de Monaco brings together the main players in the supply chain, including superyacht owners and captains

Nautical and sustainability to change the image of yachting. 

This is the focus of ‘La Belle Classe Superyachts Business Symposium’, an event organized by the Yacht Club de Monaco in the form of a dinner-debate and which has become a recurring event to take stock of the situation in the sector and future challenges. 

Organized under the aegis of the Monaco Capital of Advanced Yachting initiative, it brings together key players in the supply chain, including superyacht owners and captains. This 15th edition has explored the theme of the reputation and image of the yachting industry, at a time when the energy transition is central. 

“The unique and neutral position of the Yacht Club de Monaco makes it possible to bring together all the players in the sector to analyze the situation and propose concrete solutions. The presence of all the players reflects everyone’s involvement, which is essential if we are to progress”, says Bernard d’Alessandri, YCM General Secretary and President of Cluster Yachting Monaco. 

While the pleasure boating market is thriving with a solid order book, the issue of sustainability is at the center of public opinion and the sector. 

“The number of yachts under construction grew by 7% in 2023 and right now there are 648 yachts over 30 meters under construction. The order books of the shipyards are full and some have already sold yachts for delivery in 2028,” said Merjin de Waard, founder of SuperYacht Times and board member of the Superyacht Life Foundation. 

“New yacht sales were down 29% in 2022 compared to 2021, however 2022 was still the second best year (after 2021) in the past decade with 221 new yacht sales. We must add that 2021 turned out to be an unusual year, due to the strong post-pandemic demand and at the same time the wide availability of new yachts: for example, in 2021, 35% of new yachts under construction were for sale, while today it is only 19%”, he said.

The general feeling is of an uncertain market due to a combination of crises including an unstable economic environment, rising prices for materials and energy, higher interest rates and many geopolitical unknowns. The perception of the yachting sector, it is explained, is somewhat skewed due to media coverage of green goals, with 71% of 1,200 specialist publications in 2022 reporting negative sentiments towards the sector. 

For experts and observers, the superyacht industry is facing a moment of crisis and needs an action plan to improve performance and reduce its environmental impact. 

After the La Belle Classe Superyachts Business Symposium, the YCM is preparing for the 6th Monaco Ocean Week (March 20-26) organized by the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation with the Oceanographic Institute of Monaco, the Monaco Scientific Center and the Yacht Club de Monaco. As tradition dictates, YCM will take care of the day dedicated to yachting on Thursday 23 March.

The full-day program kicks off with the 12th edition of La Belle Classe Superyachts Environmental Symposium, this year focusing on the Monaco Energy Boat Challenge (July 3-8), followed by the 27th Captains’ Forum to arrive at the 3rd YCM Explorer Awards of La Belle Classe Superyachts. At the same time, the 1st Monaco Smart Yacht Rendezvous will be launched, organized by M3 (Monaco Marina Management) following the success of the first two editions of the Monaco Smart & Sustainable Marina Rendezvous (next 24-25 September 2023).

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