Made in Italy boats are worth nearly 4 bn (and one in two superyachts is Italian)

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Made in Italy is liked, even in the boating world, and especially abroad. This is the finding of Deloitte’s study for Confindustria Nautica, The state of the art of the global yachting market.”

The pandemic did not stop the recovery of the industry, which had entered a slump after the great recession triggered by the subprime mortgage bubble in the US in 2008. Italy is now the world leader in the production of motor yachts over 30 meters , and overall new boat production is worth 3.6 billion euros in 2021, an increase of 34 percent over the previous year. Production destined mainly for foreign countries, from which 88 percent of domestic sales come.

Made in Italy boats

Made in Italy Boating, one out of every two superyachts sold is Italian

The world shipbuilding of recreational boats in 2021 exceeds $29 billion in sales. Driving Italy, whose total industry value is $3.6 billion (over 10 percent of the world market), is the production of superyachts over 30 meters: for every two sold, one is produced in Italy.


Azimut Benetti è (di nuovo) il più grande produttore di mega yacht al mondo


Italian yachting stands out once again as one of the leading sectors of Made in Italy,” said Saverio Cecchi, president of Confindustria Nautica. “Among the economies of the sea, the marine industry is the industry that grew the most in 2021, with the best revenue growth ever (+34 percent).”

Azimut Grande Trideck
Azimut Grande Trideck, flagship of the shipyard

Pleasure boats

The market for outboard boats and pneumatic vehicles also did very well, showing double-digit growth (+14.2%) over the long term (5 years) . In the sailing world, new boat sales in Italy, after a thud in 2020, rebounded and grew by more than 30 percent. Still a marginal market compared to motor boats. In fact, the report shows that sailboat production in Italy accounts for only 4 percent of the national value of recreational shipbuilding, compared to a world average of 9 percent.

Recreational boating: growth until when?

The growth we have seen in recent years, experts say, is likely to continue in the future. In spite of inflation, the Ukraine war crisis, and continuing difficulties in sourcing components, the value of the global market for 2022 is expected to grow by +16%, while the Italian market is expected to register +15/20%. The report also shows a trend toward market consolidation, as is happening in the world of automobiles, with the emergence of large industrial groups for increasingly efficient and sustainable production.

TOP Superyacht: le 25 barche più grandi del mondo nel 2020

The boat as a “safe haven asset”

Among the reasons for this success, after the dramatic Covid experience, the boat is perceived as a safe place, a “safe haven asset” where people can find shelter and for which more and more people are willing to spend. The need for a less stressful life drives the public to use the boat as an antidote to personal and work problems.

Made in Italy boats. Comfortable, easy to steer and technological

Thanks to recent technological innovations in the industry, boats are now easier to navigate and manage at berth: with joystick controls, automatic mooring, home automation and remote control applications, and many other benefits. They are also more attractive in terms of design and decor, providing owners and guests with high levels of comfort, performance, and safety that we can compare to a villa at sea. These factors cause many more people to consider buying a boat in the future, contributing to the steady growth of the industry.

James Barbaro

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