On paper, the concept of fractional ownership has always made perfect sense and offers a way to make superyacht ownership more accessible to a wider selection of clients. It is something that many owners have considered and several companies have attempted, and yet it has never really taken off. Geoff Moore, West Nautical Managing Director, offered his thoughts on the fractional ownership model.
‘I think this is a very viable option for owners – if it works for small pleasure crafts, why not superyachts? If all questions and responsibilities are addressed and detailed in a contract before ownership actually begins, there should be absolutely no room for discrepancies or arguments over who has the yacht and when. When drawing up the details, you are effectively creating a longer-term charter contract, with the bonus being that you own part of a yacht and have an input in the long-term running, itinerary and crewing of it. Very often, owners feel aggrieved that their yacht is sitting unused with them picking up the bills, so this option is an intermediary between chartering and owning. The owners would pay for all of their own cruising costs as with a normal charter, with the pre-agreed running budget of large costs such as refit, insurance and crew salaries all being equally shared according to the ownership structure. Owners would be able to use the yacht as and when they wish, within their time allowance as established within the perimeters of the contract, while knowing it isn’t sitting in harbour incurring costs when they’re not on board.
Advantages to the individual include being a yacht owner, while being able to share the ownership costs, responsibilities and liabilities. Much like a time-share, we’ve seen the system working for years. I think this could be an interesting business model for many people looking to enter the industry. This would be especially enticing to the younger, western UHNWIs who are looking to enter the market as owners and perhaps want to jump to a larger yacht for the cost of a smaller entrysize vessel, without 100 per cent ownership’. (c) Geoff Moore