Oyster Yachts has started 2016 with a better order book than the same time last year with contracts totalling £70m. There are 15 yachts currently in fit-out – ten in Oyster Yacht’s Norfolk shipyard, five in its Southampton yard – and 11 others waiting to start.
The moulding of the first Oyster 118 commenced late in 2015 and fit-out will start in the Southampton shipyard in a few months’ time. This pioneering project, the largest Oyster ever built in the UK, together with a pipeline of three Oyster 825s, two Oyster 745s and two ‘Raised Deck’ versions of the Oyster 885, means that Oyster is now expanding its team in Southampton by 25%, recruiting 50 staff across all trade skills over the next 3–6 months.
With more than 85% of capacity also sold for 2016 in its Norfolk shipyard, Oyster starts the year with a positive view of the market and future prospects. Three recent orders for the new Oyster 475, the build of the exciting ‘First of Class’ Oyster 675 at the same time as the last of the much loved classic Oyster 72/725 and several Oyster 545s, 575s and 625s in the pipeline for the Norfolk yard, gives a good indication of the wide spectrum of Oyster’s success in the market during 2015.
David Tydeman, Oyster Yachts CEO, commented, “I am delighted that we are continuing to appeal to owners across the whole of our range from the 475 to the 118 and are keeping both shipyards busy. For our USA team, 2015 was our best year in more than a decade for new yachts and brokerage sales, with nine yachts sold from 47ft to 72ft and ranging from $0.5m to $2.5m. We have nearly 40 entries for the amazing 27-month Oyster World Rally (which starts in January 2017) and have had great success from our investment in an Oyster Service Centre in Palma. These all emphasise how we listen to our owners and respond to their needs. In parallel with the strong order book for Oyster yachts, our custom and refit business goes from strength to strength and we completed a significant refit of Cambria – the beautiful 1928 built 140ft Fife Classic – in the autumn and we are now 70% through a detailed refurbishment of the Farr designed, UK built Sojana, a wonderful Carbon/Titanium lightweight 115ft ketch. These two projects, together with the new 118ft Oyster, are a great example of the versatility of Oyster in the superyacht market.”