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Yachts & Jets: Find and Exploit the Industry Overlaps

What do you get when you cross hundreds of yachts & aircraft? It may sound like a joke but JETNET is serious about YachtSpot for those seeking industry overlaps...

Matt Harris   |   12th June 2017
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Matt Harris Matt Harris

Matt Harris is Commissioning Editor for AvBuyer. He is an experienced General and Business...
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Understanding the relationships between the yachting & aviation industries
What do you get when you cross hundreds of yachts with hundreds of aircraft? It may sound like a joke in need of a punchline, but JETNET is deadly serious about YachtSpot, launched in response to an observation that the yacht and aviation industries have been serving a few of the same clients (and potential clients) for the past three decades…

Worldwide, about one percent of turbine aircraft owners also own luxury yachts of 24 meters or longer in length. Nevertheless, in their illusive search for High-Net-Worth Individuals who might be prospects for either the boating or the aviation industry, marketers from those diverse communities participate side-by-side from time-to-time in the same trade shows and special events.

Identifying the mega rich requires looking in unique places where there might be a connection, even if the universe of dual ownership is very small.

Building on this reality there have been two noteworthy announcements connecting well-established yacht and aviation companies (Northrop & Johnson with Crystal Aircruises, and Camper & Nicholsons with Air Partner) in the past couple of months alone.

“It’s a given that each industry has exacting demands that influence the identification of HNWIs, as well as the financing, insuring, management, understanding of asset amenities and completion of complex legal transactions,” Mike Foye, Director of Marketing, JETNET, explains.

“The question is which sources of information exist that professionals can use to understand not only their own world, but the opportunities within the other industry?”

By way of providing the answer, and having set the stage over the past 30 years for research into the buying patterns, ownership tendencies and financial solutions of owners and operators relating to aircraft, JETNET has applied its experience to gather data on luxury yachts of 24m in length and larger.

By researching and identifying the owners, operators, captains, managers, central agents, and others, JETNET YachtSpot is the only single database offering the key contacts in the worlds of luxury yacht and private aircraft ownership and management.


Individually-Owned Yacht/Aircraft Cross-Over

So how could an aviation dealer/broker or charter company (for example) that is interested in the sparse overlap between the markets find the combined data and make them work in practice?

As recorded on YachtSpot, as of May 16, 2017, there were 538 Business Jets, 64 Turboprops, and 116 Helicopters owned by 346 individuals who also own yachts. By means of comparison, JETNET reports that there are over 33,482 owners of turbine-powered aircraft and nearly 17,800 owners of helicopters.

A breakdown of the 538 Business Jets owned by those individuals reveals 345 (64%) are Heavy Jets; 115 (22%) are Medium Jets; 72 (13%) are Light Jets; and 6 (1%) are Very Light Jets (Chart A).


Table A (below) depicts the ‘Top Ten Aircraft Owned’ by both Make and Model by those 346 individuals who also own yachts.



Using YachtSpot to drill further into the most popular aircraft represented in Table A, we can discover that 13 individuals own yachts and Gulfstream G550 jets. Of these individuals, 60% have a ‘Mega’ category yacht (45-121m length), versus 36% that own Super yachts (30-45m length), accounting for a combined 96% of the total yachts in JETNET’s analysis.

Two yacht manufacturers (Westport and Feadship) account for 64% of the yacht makes of these same operators, highlighting where brokers and charter providers might focus their efforts for cross-industry business opportunities.

(Note that there are three helicopter models featuring within the top ten aircraft owned (by model) by individuals also owning yachts, including the Agusta/Westland AW139, Robinson R22 and Bell 412EP.)

Interestingly, just over one-fifth of the AgustaWestland AW139 owners also own Giga Yachts (above 121m length), which presumably would be large enough to incorporate helipads. Of the remainder, more than half (57.1%) own or lease Mega Yachts. (Approximately 43% of the yachts comprise models manufactured by Oceanco, Lurssen and Abeking & Rasmussen.)


Company-Owned Yacht/Aircraft Cross-Over

The picture is very different when it comes to analyzing companies (as opposed to individuals) owning and leasing both yachts and aircraft. As of May 16, 2017, divided between 257 companies owning yachts and aircraft are 1,345 jets, 56 turboprops, and 199 helicopters.

Of the jets owned or leased by yacht and aircraft-owning companies, 967 (or 72%) are Heavy Jets; 323 (24%) are Medium Jets; and 53 (4%) are Light Jets.



Offering more insight into the significant preference for Heavy Jets among yacht-owning companies, Table B shows that the Top Three aircraft (by make) all come from OEMs that traditionally build commercial jets.



The ‘Top Ten’ aircraft owned (by model) is dominated by commercial airliners/businessliners. The one aircraft to rank in the Top 10 Aircraft (by Model) that does not have its roots in commercial airline manufacture is the AgustaWestland AW139 helicopter.


Yacht Owners without Aircraft

So what type of yacht owner/lessee doesn’t yet own an aircraft? According to YachtSpot data, there are 1,501 individuals who either own or lease a yacht, but don’t own or lease an aircraft. Of those, 775 – or 42% – own a Super yacht (30-44m length) while a fairly even split 31% own Luxury yachts (24-29m) and 27% own Mega yachts (30-45m).

Around 9% (or 130) yacht owner/lessees who do not own aircraft have owned aircraft previously. The majority (40%) are owners of Super yachts, again indicating yacht markets for those in the aircraft market to target for potential business when the time is right and yacht owners who have left begin re-entering the aircraft market.

A look at the 3,642 companies owning yachts but not aircraft reveals a similar picture, with approximately 47% owning Super yachts. Unlike the results for individuals, however, if we look at companies that own or lease yachts that previously owned aircraft (>9% of the total number of companies owning yachts but not aircraft), the split is relatively even at 40% of Super yacht owners, 29% of Mega yacht owners, and 29% Luxury yacht owners.


In Summary

Returning to our opening question, what do you get when you cross hundreds of yachts with hundreds of aircraft? “The science of research is key to revealing the relationships at a far deeper level than ever before between yacht and aircraft markets,” Foye highlights. Those relationships should help companies active in the Business Aviation market to exploit the cross-overs and find new avenues for business opportunities that were not previously so readily identified.

“Our data strongly indicates that individual owners or dual asset owners appreciate the form and function of specific makes and models and the pairings therein,” concludes Foye.

Using the small nexus between owners of yachts and aircraft may seem challenging, but locating High-Net-Worth Individuals is analogous to finding the illusive needle in a haystack. JETNET’s new YachtSpot may be just what the marketer ordered.

More information from www.yacht-spot.com or www.jetnet.com

Read more about: Business Aviation Market Analysis | Private Jet Ownership | JetNet

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