Groupe Beneteau reveals what is “on the horizon”

Gianguido Girotti, CEO, Boat Division. Image: Beneteau

Groupe Beneteau set out its corporate vision at a press conference on the eve of the Cannes Yachting Festival, welcoming over 200 guests to the JW Marriott on the Croisette. The group said it would continue to focus on motor and sail boats from 5.5m to 24m, but “moving from a volume-driven strategy to a value-driven strategy”.

green vision

Groupe Beneteau takes up the challenge of sustainable boating by focusing on both product development and manufacturing processes.

Gianguido Girotti, CEO of Groupe Beneteau’s Boat Division, said: “On the product development side, we are currently focusing on reducing environmental impact in two key areas: composite materials and propulsion systems.

Focusing on composite materials, Groupe Beneteau set up a special project team for the first hull of the Beneteau First 44, working with French resin manufacturer Arkema to build a prototype with 100% recyclable resin.

This expertise in composite materials will also be used to build two Mini 6.5 racing sailboat prototypes using these same materials for The Arch project. These versions of the Beneteau First 44 and the Arch Mini 6.5 will be presented to the public at winter boat shows.

Image: Beneteau

In addition to composite materials, the other game-changing element in product development is the transition to low- or zero-emission propulsion systems, and Groupe Beneteau is cooperating with Vision Marine Technologies and Torqeedo on various models, as well as ‘with Volvo Penta on a hybrid engine project. .

Girotti said: “We have decided to change the way we produce our small composite parts and we have introduced a new bio-based resin and natural fiber to replace the classic one. We also decided to examine the energy consumption of our factories.

The company is also collaborating with Vendée Energie to install four hectares of photovoltaic shade structures above the car parks of the production sites.

“At Groupe Beneteau, we also keep in mind that being sustainable means focusing on making boating accessible. Our boats and yachts are the result of top notch industrial processes and we care about our customers as well as our land and oceans. Sustainable navigation will increasingly be our priority.

Key product launches

Erik Stromberg, Vice President of Power & Motor Yacht Development
Erik Stromberg, vice president of Power & Motor Yacht Development. Image: Beneteau

Erik Stromberg, vice president of Power & Motor Yacht Development, said the company launched 15 new models in the dayboating segment across four brands. He highlighted three new Jeanneau models that made their Cannes debut: Cap Camarat 10.5 CC, Merry Fisher 1295 Fly and DB/43, the first of a new series.

“The DB/43 represents a bold launch, not just of a luxury dayboat, but of a whole new range and a clear departure into a new market segment,” said Stromberg, whose presentation also included the Four Winns TH36 and the Wellcraft 355.

In the ‘property on the water’ segment, Stromberg cited Prestige’s new M48 motor catamaran, the first bihull model from the monohull motor yacht specialist.

“Nothing epitomizes real estate like a multihull and Prestige decided to forge its way into the world of catamarans,” said Stromberg. “It’s a natural step for a brand that has focused on providing the best onboard experience. From the luxury of space to increased stability, the M48 perfectly complements the Prestige product offering. A real motor yacht, on a multihull platform.

Prestige has also added the X60, which made its Cannes debut after a world premiere in the United States earlier this year.

Damien Jacob, Beneteau Group
Image: Beneteau

Damien Jacob, Vice President of Sailboat Development, highlighted the new Lagoon 51 incorporating more sustainable materials on board such as natural fibers in the composite, while the new Excess 14 continues the brand’s goal of offer the excitement of sailing in a monohull aboard a multihull with twin helm stations.

“The multihull segment is very dynamic, and the recent global crisis has pushed even more people in that direction,” said Jacob. “Multihulls embody the desire of many sailors for more freedom on the water. Lagoon and Excess aim to meet the different uses of multihulls and the two brands offer a specific nautical experience.

Meanwhile, new sailing monohulls included Beneteau’s new flagship Oceanis Yacht 60, First 44 and First 36, with the First series celebrating its 45th anniversary. Meanwhile, the Jeanneau Yachts 55 is set to debut at Boot Düsseldorf in January 2023.

“With a wide range of products ranging from pure racer to pure cruiser, Beneteau and Jeanneau are now the world market leaders,” said Jacob. “This position gave us the opportunity to venture into new trends.”

Switch to digitization

The third axis is the transition to increased digitization. Last year, Groupe Beneteau presented Seaapps and already 2,000 boats are equipped with the technology. By September 2023, every boat leaving factories worldwide will also be equipped with the app. In addition, it will be available as a retrofit on all existing boats maintained in the Group’s dealer network.

Clément Douet, Vice-President Digital Business, said: “At Groupe Beneteau, we strongly believe that digitalization will help us build a special and unique bond between our boats, our customers, our dealers and our brands.

At Groupe Beneteau, digitalization is not just a department for looking good and talking to the new generation. Digitization is reflected in each entity to align with one objective: to offer a unique 360-degree online and offline experience to each of our customers.

This edited article first appeared on Yacht Style.

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