Gulf Craft, one of the region’s biggest builders of yachts and leisure craft, has announced plans to build its first super yacht in excess of 60m on length within the next 4 years. The company, which is based in Umm Al Quwain, has recently delivered two 47m long Majesty 155 Series yachts and is currently working on plans for a 53m vessel.
To build a 60m-plus yacht will require significant investment in its facilities, to expand, and upgrade, its manufacturing infrastructure. In particular it would require creation of a capability to work in steel and aluminium as well as fibreglass, and also bigger drydocks and work sheds. The level of investment required has been estimated to be over US$25 million.
The company is reported to be investigating a partial flotation to fund this next phase of expansion. An IPO is one option being given active consideration, which would allow the general public in the UAE to participate.
Prospects for 2017 are rated highly by the company which expects to see a growth in sales of around 20% this year. This is being assisted by an expansion of new leisure and yacht berths in Dubai Canal, Dubai Harbour and Deira Islands. Overall, the UAE is expected to see the creation of 2000 extra berths in the next two years, creating local demand for yachts, including superyachts.