The last years edition of the International Multihull Show showed increasing economic horizons for this sector of the pleasure boat industry.
The pleasure boat sector is thriving more or less everywhere around the world, with the exception of France, which has shown a certain slowdown.
Within this context, the multihull market is going through a period of very strong growth. This is partly linked to the development of the charter market, but is also down to clients moving away from monohulls and towards multihulls, which offer better accommodation and are more comfortable.
The global market is said to be between 900 and 1100 units per year
While there are no accurate official statistics in this area, figures obtained from various builders have enabled us to judge the state of the market concerning cruising catamarans in excess of thirty feet with between 900 and 1100 units produced this year. Whether we are talking about catama- rans or trimarans, they can be divided up into 85 % with sails (750 to 950 units) and 15 % with engines (130 to 150 units).
70 % of world production is French
- Almost 70% of the multihulls in the world are built in France: Lagoon (world leader), Fountaine- Pajot, Catana Group, Bavaria Nautitech, Outremer, Privilège Marine, Marsaudon Composites, Neel, Swiss Catamarans, Aventura, to name but the most well known.
- South Africa is the world’s second manufacturer with the Robertson & Caine yards (the world number 2, which is well known for the brands, Leopard, Sunsail and Moorings), as well as Tag Yachts, Knysna Yachts, Royal Cape, Catamaran, Xquisite.
A large increase in production capacity
To satisfy the increase in sales, yards have been investing heavily and all of the sites belonging to the main builders have seen their production capacity increase in two-digit proportions:
- Lagoon: a new factory in Bordeaux (CNB)
- Fountaine-Pajot: large increase in its capacity at the Aigrefeuille site (Charente-Maritime)
- Catana with its brand Bali delivered more than 60 catamarans in 2017
- Bavaria Nautitech has completely updated its production site in Rochefort and its factories expected a production of more than 70 units in 2017
- Outremer is extending its production site in La Grande Motte, while settting up new facilities in Canet-en-Roussillon (Pyrénées-Orientales)
- Swiss Catamaran recently set up a production site in Balaruc (Pyrénées-Orientales)
The charter sector as a booster
The pricing and quality of construction today favours the acquisition of a multihull using a managed service agreement. This is no a new phenomenon, but its development has been spectacular. The charter market is believed to represent 40% of the business of builders. This phenomenon is specific to multihulls.
Not forgetting motorised catamarans
For many years, considered to be the future of multihulls, the motorised yacht sector only repre- sents between 15 and 20 % of the market; all of the builders have added this product to their range. This wide ranging approach has certainly ensured the development of the sector.
As we draw up a report on 2017, yards are already announcing a lot of new products for 2018, which confirms the extraordinary development of this branch of the marine sector.
The 2018 edition looks extremely promising with a thriving sector ahead.
Salon International du Multicoque (Multihull Boat Show)
Launched in 2010, the International Multihull Boat Show was built around a simple concept: showing multihulls afloat, in a dedicated place and in an exclusive manner.
Location: • FR - France Montpellier Port La Grande Motte
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