Top technology for superyachts at SMM 2008

Superyachts are an exclusive segment which has grown steadily at the SMM in recent years. The SMM 2008 will showcase the top technology of more than 1,800 exhibitors from over 50 nations. This year's event uses 87,000 square metres of exhibition space, and will include equipment to meet all the needs of superyachts, including propulsion, automation, navigation and communication systems, plus onboard equipment such as power, hydraulic and waste treatment facilities.

A number of the leading superyacht builders will be present at the SMM 2008. Lürssen is rated by the British trade magazine “The Yacht Report” as the world’s number one yacht builder, with a total of some 57,000 gross tons (GT) in the superyacht sector, followed by Blohm + Voss, a shipyard belonging to ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems (TKMS), with some 50,000 GT at its two locations in Hamburg and Kiel. The Top Ten in this field include SMM exhibitor Amels, which belongs to the Dutch shipyard group Damen, and also Abeking & Rasmussen. Peters Schiffbau is another shipyard with substantial engagement in the yacht sector, using the SMM 2008 as a platform for its products; Lloyd Werft Bremerhaven is there, and so is the Fincantieri Group – alongside their flourishing cruise ship business, the Italian Group is also engaged in superyacht building.
Statistics of “The Yacht Report” indicate that the milestone of 250 superyachts was passed for the first time last year, with deliveries of 253 vessels having a length overall of more than 30 metres – that is more than 60% up on 2005 (158 vessels). 182 superyachts were made in Europe, 41 in the US, and 30 in other countries.
Industry leader Lürssen has already delivered two superyachts this year – the 155 metre Sunflower in February, and the 70 metre Martha Ann in April, powered by two Caterpillar engines. Lürssen will complete another three luxury yachts before the end of this year. TKMS shipyards will deliver three vessels of this top-secret segment in 2008, including the Sigmar, built at HDW – a 118 metre yacht in futuristic design by Philippe Starck, and the 93 metre Safari. Abeking & Rasmussen will hand over a 78 metre yacht in July 2008. Amels have delivered the second 52 metre yacht of the Limited Editions Amels 171, a programme launched in 2005 to build luxury yachts much more quickly but without sacrificing individuality, thanks to flexible use of design modules.
The order book at the beginning of 2008 included a total of 445 superyachts. 144 of these have a length overall in excess of 50 metres so that, for the first time, this segment is bigger than that of yachts between 40 and 50 metres (113 orders). 188 orders are in the length range 30 to 40 metres, a classic domain of the Italian shipyards. Up-sizing is now a firm trend not only in cruise ships and container ships, but also in superyachts.

The superyacht sector
at the SMM 2008 will include not only many builders, but also the leading manufacturers of accessories and components. The German Yachting Industry Pool (GYP) will be there again this year at a joint stand – this organisation brings together more than 60 companies who have combined forces under the auspices of the German Boat and Shipbuilding Association to represent and reinforce German interests in this market segment.