Amels owner says yacht market showing signs of promise

Damen Shipyards Group, owner of superyacht builder Amels, recorded a net loss of €17 million in 2018, the first time in 15 years that the Dutch shipbuilder announced a budget shortfall.

It blamed the loss on investments in facilities, capabilities and personnel and on hard times in “some maritime sectors.” Not among the latter, it stressed, are the cruise and yachting markets which are, in fact, “showing signs of promise.”

Damen entered the cruise market last month saying it will deliver its first 220-passenger cruise ship in September 2021. Damen gave no financial details for its Amels superyacht unit which it acquired in 1991.

Family-owned Damen Shipyards Group operates 36 yards, employing 12,000 people worldwide. Its success stems from a standardized ship-design concept for commercial vessels that Damen also uses for Amels yachts.

CEO Rene Berkvens says Damen will keep up investments and acquisitions as it has “full confidence of better times in the future.”