Nautor Swan has today confirmed its purchase of the Camper & Nicholson yard in Gosport and released the following statement
The Nautor Group formally announced today, the acquisition of the historic Camper & Nicholsons yard in Gosport, England. Nautor will continue to operate the yard, founded in 1782, as Camper & Nicholsons, with business initiatives designed to turn the yard into a centre of excellence.
Nautor’s main objective is to build and refit superyachts at the yard, which will also act as a service yard for Nautor’s Swans. In particular, the yard will concentrate on one-off projects.
Leonardo Ferragamo, Chairman of the Nautor group, explained the rationale for the decision: “We first looked into this opportunity as we could not conceive that such a prestigious and historical yard could be dismantled and its workforce, consisting of very skilled boat builders and capable craftsmen, made redundant. Also, the yard is in such an important area, as the Solent is one of the centres for yachting in the world.”
“While we shall determinedly re-launch the traditional boat building ability of Camper & Nicholsons as a long term project, we shall also, along with Hamble Yacht Services, have the capacity to utilize these facilities to increase and improve the services for the existing fleet of Swans in the UK as well as to fine-tune the Swans that have just sailed their first 1,400 miles from Finland”.
Nautor’s Managing Director, Luciano Scaramuccia is to become chairman of Camper & Nicholsons, with Pat Lilley, a director of Nautor’s English agents and Mikael Still, Nautor’s Chief Financial Officer, appointed as board members of the company.
Luciano Scaramuccia commented: “The traditional values of high craftsmanship of both these companies and the timeless elegance of their products are excellent assets on which to build the future. Our intention is to have a great synergy between the two companies and to merge our different experiences in order to create an important “centre of excellence”.
The Nautor Group has stated three main areas to concentrate on at the yard: firstly, to push forward with the boat building activity. Nautor is aiming to bring back to Camper & Nicholsons, with a modern perspective, the ability to build some of the most spectacular one-off designs in the world, whether built in a traditional manner or using high tech methods. This is a different market segment to Nautor’s Swan as the products themselves do not overlap and there is a clear differentiation between the brands.
Secondly, the refit market is very important for Camper & Nicholsons. Nautor wants to maintain the tradition of the workforce that has been involved in refitting some of the most historic yachts in the world, in an activity that complements the yacht building business.
Thirdly, there is a large Nautor’s Swan fleet in England that can be serviced at the yard or at Hamble Yacht Services, in addition to the boats that are travelling down from Pietarsaari. These Swan yachts will now have a new option for a base, immediately after their initial testing period on the sail down from Finland. Nautor’s Swan now has the ability to control this area of the after sales process and focus on a high level of quality for Swan owners.
The Nautor Group is aiming to benefit from the cross experience that can be generated between the technical and marketing knowledge in Nautor’s Swan and at Camper & Nicholsons.
The acquisition of the Camper & Nicholsons yard reinforces the Nautor Group, by enlarging its global offering of luxury sailing boats and its credibility in all areas of business, including after sales service.
The short term aim is to consolidate the turnover of the Camper & Nicholsons yard – approximately 12 million Euros – and concentrate on its efficiency.
Camper & Nicholson also has a history of working with the Ministry of Defence, which the new ownership hopes to maintain.