The Dutch superyacht sector had a banner year in 2017, launching 21 yachts worth €1.19bn, up from €927m in 2016 when Dutch yards launched 18 yachts.

Dutch semi-custom and full-custom yachts cost, on average, €57m in 2017. The yards took in orders for 23 yachts – up five from 2016. The new orders were for 22 motoryachts and one sailing yacht.

The 2017 data is contained in the annual Superyacht IQ report of Amsterdam-based SuperYacht Company, publisher of SuperYacht Times.

“The Dutch are selling more superyachts at a higher total value, while also steadily increasing their market share,” says Jeroen Sirag, export director at HISWA Holland Yachting Group, a lobby of 11 builders and 16 suppliers.

The 2017 data reflects sales by HHYG members. But a handful of Dutch builders who are not HHYG members report brisk business too.

The Superyacht IQ report said the 149 yachts of 30m and up launched worldwide in 2017 had an estimated value of €4.08bn. With their launches valued at €1.19bn, Dutch yards accounted for 29.2% of the global market value, a hefty 21.6% rise from 2016. In terms of launches, the Dutch accounted for 14.1% of global launches in 2017, up from11.2% in 2016.

The average price of €57m for a Dutch superyacht in 2017 was up 10% from 2016 and “the highest total value recorded to date,” said the report.

In an interview, Sirag told IBI the Dutch industry is planning investments “over the next two years in bigger facilities. Some yards are talking to the city of Amsterdam about putting an extra yard there. The same, by the way, goes for suppliers.”

Feadship is opening a fourth yard in the Dutch capital in 2019.

A hallmark of the Dutch industry is a common, highly organised marketing strategy through HHGY and the fact that suppliers are thick on the ground and, often, around the corner. “We have been around for 49 years,” says Sirag. “We are a collective in marketing terms. That gives us a big edge over foreign competitors.”

The Dutch are at pains to appeal to the growing ranks of ultra-rich who are unfamiliar with the yachting lifestyle. “Some young owners grew up with superyachts. But there is also a very large group that did not and have reasons to spend money elsewhere. Our assignment is to cultivate them.”

The marketing of Dutch-built superyachts stresses that high-quality yachts retain value because of “unrivalled cost-to-quality offered by the Dutch superyacht cluster,” says Sirag.