Having been with Sarnia Yachts for 15 years, 2021 was certainly one of the most memorable for a number of reasons, not least because of Covid. The year started with lockdowns and the cancellation of boat shows but there was light at the end of the tunnel with the vaccination programme and the hope that we could still see some cruising for our yacht owners in the summer.
There was indeed a summer season with some of our owners getting onboard, however, the ebb and flow of border restrictions did limit use by both owners and charterers alike, causing great frustration and resulting in a big increase in administration work for our team. For me personally, attending the Cannes and Monaco shows in September was a great boost, especially seeing the record numbers of orders placed and great levels of new business signed including for our new Yacht Management service. With the recognised historic structure format being one provider for corporate services and a separate one for yacht management, Sarnia Yachts having both under one roof has been well received by owners, especially when underpinned with transparency and a zero commission policy across the board.
Owners have advised us that the value of their yachts have increased since Covid, both in terms of the importance of quality family time and also in terms of a controlled environment in which to relax and enjoy their free time. In line with this, more and more owners do not want to be caught up in day to day administration as this turns the yacht into a chore rather than a pleasure as it was intended – and this is where we are able to offer our expertise.
Although 2021 was a great year from a business perspective, I am looking forward to 2022 and to catching up with so many people that I have not seen since before Covid. Although the various video platforms such as Zoom and Teams are valuable tools and here to stay, they will never replace face to face as the best way to do business in our industry.