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Project Landspeed has world record mark within reach - MarineBusinessWorld Oceania newsletter

by Peter Rendle 7 Dec 2022 22:00 PST
Emirates Team NZ - World wind powered speed record - Lake Gairdner - December 2022 © Emirates Team NZ

While land speed records are not entirely marine business news, we believe that the industry should be able to keep abreast of the latest developments within the boating spectrum.

After what has seemed like endless weather delays over the past couple of months, finally Horonuku got to stretch its legs on a dry Lake Gairdner with breeze that is edging closer into the required zone for world record attempts. The promising weather forecast, coupled with reports of a dry lake, was enough for the Landspeed team to remobilise within days and get back to the lake to re-rig Horonuku in searing 40-degree temperatures in preparation for the expected 20+ knot SW front on Sunday evening.

More good news from an Australian boat builder. Maritimo, one of Australia's leading builders of long-range, luxury motor yachts, exports boats worldwide, around half of its annual production. This week, six Maritimo boats, around 180 tonnes worth, to the value of US$18 million, will be shipped to the US from the Port of Brisbane where they will be welcomed by Maritimo's dealers across the country, before being delivered to their proud owners.

In January, another shipment of seven Maritimos will head to the US, valued at over US$21 million. Outside Australia, the US is the next biggest market for Maritimo. New Zealand is also an important and growing market. The majority of Maritimos travel across the Tasman to New Zealand on their own hull, which is a testament to the offshore cruising capabilities of these Australian-designed and built vessels.

The Boating Industry Association Ltd (BIA) has released its 2022 Member Report Card, a statistical summary of priority activities undertaken on behalf of members over the past 12 months. The BIA connects businesses across Australia to grow the boating industry, forming a united voice representing boating. BIA's key priorities are to deliver: advocacy to government; industry-focused programs, products and support services for our members; as well as promoting education, skills and jobs; and participation in boating.

Despite challenging economic conditions over the last few years, 38 new members have joined the BIA in 2022, bringing the member base to a total of 617 active members across Australia. 2022 marked the return of BIA boat shows after a two-year hiatus due to the pandemic, with the Sydney International Boat Show attracting more than 45,000 visitors, 190 exhibitors and almost 600 vessels on display.

The 2022 Sydney Superyacht Captains' Long Lunch has been hailed a much-needed gathering for skippers and select superyacht industry proponents. The 13th annual Sydney Superyacht Captains' Long Lunch at Squire's Landing, Circular Quay, hosted by Rivergate Marina & Shipyard, Major Yacht Services and Sydney Superyacht Marina, welcomed 40 guests, including Captains, representatives from AIMEX-Superyacht Australia, Jonathan Beckett, Chief Executive of Burgess, Peter Mahony, General Manager of Benetti Asia, the CEO and COO from Tourism Fiji, Brent Hill and Leigh Howard, Natalie Godward Cruise Development Manager at the Port Authority of NSW, and Hillary Buckman, Publisher at Ocean Media.

"This event is totally centred on Captains," explained Rivergate's Steve Fisher. "It's unstructured - no speeches, no agenda - just our recognition of their expertise and a moment to pause and enjoy each other's company. Captains rarely get that opportunity throughout the year, working around the globe or even if they're in the same region, they barely do more than flash their nav lights at each other!"

The Asian market continues to expand and more pieces of the puzzle drop into place with Nautor Swan's strategy to reinforce the Asia Pacific market, appointing Hong Kong-based ASIAMARINE as its new agent for Hong Kong, Singapore, Thailand, Philippines and Vietnam. On the other hand, VICSAIL - already representing Nautor Swan sailing yachts in Australia and New Zealand - is broadening its offer adding Swan Shadow and Swan OverShadow to its portfolio. ASIAMARINE, founded in 2012 in Hong Kong by Eric Noyel, has been a fast-growing company and has acquired the representation of many brands over the years and played a significant role in the development of yachting in Asia.

Eric Noyel, Founder & CEO of ASIAMARINE, said "we are absolutely delighted to be associated with Nautor Swan both for sailing and motor yachts. Nautor Swan is one of the most renowned of all the premier boating brands and known worldwide for performance, quality, elegance, and innovative design. ASIAMARINE is proud to be an integral part of this, in Asia."

Galeon has been represented successfully since 2016 in several Asian markets by ASIAMARINE with over 60 yachts sold to date. The very warm welcome of the acclaimed brand by Asian buyers has encouraged the shipyard to enter the next stage of its development in the region, extending its coverage from five to twelve countries. The ambitious plan relies on the establishment of Galeon Asia, headquartered in Hong Kong.

The new entity will act as the regional centre appointing and supporting dealerships in countries where the brand is either not yet present or has not performed on par with expectations. ASIAMARINE will continue to develop as the exclusive dealer for Hong Kong, Singapore and Thailand, aiming to install durably Galeon Yachts among the most sought-after yachts in those mature territories. This strong base will be expanded in other countries through new partnerships with solid and committed partners.

In Australia, Zodiac Inflatables are now available through the exclusive distributor, Sirocco Marine, who have expanded their showrooms and imported hundreds of the latest models in time for summer. With the tagline of "125 years of air and water", French brand Zodiac is recognised as the pioneer of the inflatable boat. In the 1880s, French company, Zodiac Aerospace specialised in airships. By the 1930s, their engineering expertise was called on to develop an inflatable boat for the French Naval Air Force which sought innovative solutions for military transport, and the Zodiac rigid inflatable boat was born.

New products this week include Lowrance®, who has rolled out its next generation of fishing electronics this week. The new HDS PRO® chartplotter/fishfinder, highest resolution ActiveTarget™ 2 Live Sonar and, ultra high-definition Active Imaging™ HD provide anglers the complete package of the latest fish-finding technology that has helped them find and catch more fish for over half a century.

HDS PRO forms the heart of the Ultimate Fishing System, offering full networking and bow-to-stern boat control spanning trolling motors, autopilots, engines, radar, communications, and connectivity and control of PowerPole® shallow water anchors. The new HDS PRO introduces two new chart overlays for ActiveTarget Scout mode and Ghost 360, as well as a new 10-inch display, an angler favourite, with a new form factor and aspect ratio, delivering a better screen in a new package.

We bring you the news summary a little earlier than usual this week as I will be aboard a cruise ship on the way to Hobart, travelling across a stretch of water more comfortably than I did in 1982; I was aboard the Dubois 31 'Beach Inspector' when we hit a major storm in the middle of Bass Strait on the way to Sydney. We had no electronics and spent two days battling the elements with gusts up to 80 knots. I am sure the memories will be bittersweet.

Stay safe,
Peter Rendle -

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