YCM Business Symposium

This month the Monaco Yacht Club opened its doors for the 16th edition of the Belle Classe Business Symposium inviting superyacht stakeholders, club members, yacht owners and members of the local and regional sector to debate the current and future health of the yachting sector.

The yacht club invited three speakers to share the global, regional and local principalities’ perspective on the market, and Francesca Webster of SuperYacht Times was invited to the event, as a representative of the global superyacht sector and to present the key trends and statistics of the 2023 superyacht market, utilising data analysis provided by the intelligence team at SYT iQ.

Following a presentation on the market trends and the resilience seen during the course of 2023, despite a market slowdown from the highs of the post Covid-19 boom, the floor was opened to debate. Members of the audience were given the opportunity to raise questions and concerns about the future of the sector, with topics ranging from the perspective of the Turkish yacht market, to the future of sustainable vessels.

Francesca’s presentation was followed by François de Canson, President of the CRT (Regional Tourism Committee), President of ADN Tourisme, Vice-President of the PACA (Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur). Canson shared how the Région Sud is working to protect its maritime environment, with programmes to protect the sea grass through new anchoring initiatives, as well as a move toward the electrification of the local marinas.

Canson concluded, “We must embody the yachting of tomorrow, as it is in the Western Mediterranean where everything happens, is invented and implemented. This is the mission we set ourselves in southern France. We should not tolerate either the passing of this leadership role to the east nor lack of exemplary practices on our shores. Because banning them in our waters without supporting the changes amounts to giving carte blanche to bad practices. It’s by combining forces with the Principality that we will rise to these challenges, while ensuring we maintain our attractiveness and continue to develop this sector in our region. Together with the Yacht Club de Monaco, we want to mobilise the younger generation, like the students taking part in the Monaco Energy Boat Challenge, or initiatives such as the SEA Index, which measures and certifies the CO2 emissions of vessels over 24 metres.”

While much of the presentation was focused on the initiatives currently underway, there was also a sense from the following discussion that the local region feels vulnerable in the current yachting climate. With the growing investment in regions such as the Middle East, Turkey and Asia, what were once second-choice cruising grounds are quickly becoming popular destinations for yacht owners and charterers. There was a general consensus that the lifestyle offered by the South of France and its islands needs greater attention in order for its offering to remain a key destination for yachts.

The symposium was also an opportunity for Pascal Ferry and Benjamin Cauquil, Deputy Director and Research Manager, respectively, at IMSEE (Monaco’s national statistics office) to give a preview of the latest figures for the maritime and yachting economy in the Principality. Their work, which is the first of its kind and will now become an annual practice, will help local stakeholders and businesses to assess the potential viability of investment in the Principality, while also demonstrating the wider significance of the sector for the local economy.

“With over 2,000 yachts in the Western Mediterranean in the golden triangle between Italy, Spain and the French Riviera, of the 5,500 boats in the world that are more than 30 metres, the Région Sud and Principality are major players. This symposium is a unique opportunity to bring together owners and professionals to analyse current trends and issues while exploring new opportunities and challenges for the sector,” concluded Bernard d’Alessandri, YCM General Secretary and President of the Cluster Yachting Monaco.





Mark Cavendish   Chief Commercial Officer

| Robert Drontmann   Sales Director

Heesen Yachts North America

Thom Conboy   Agent North-America, Mexico, Bahama's & Caribbean