Aquila Power Catamarans Going Global; 36, 48 for Singapore Yacht Show
Built in China since 2012, Aquila power catamarans are growing in popularity outside the US, with the Singapore Yacht Show set to host an Asia premiere
The remarkable rise of Aquila power catamarans continues with February’s world premiere of the new 30 – the Chinese shipyard’s smallest model – before the popular 36 makes its Singapore Yacht Show debut in April alongside the 48.
Sino Eagle Yachts has built Aquila powercats at a purpose-built facility in Hangzhou, southwest of Shanghai, since 2012 and proudly completed its 100th hull in 2017.
However, following rapid expansion in the last two years, the shipyard now expects to build over 90 units in just 12 months (fiscal year 2018-19) according to Hong Kong-based Yvan Eymieu, Aquila’s International Sales and Distribution Manager since 2017.
Along with increasing sales, Aquila has also notably expanded its reach outside of the US, its core market, in the last 18 months.
In Aquila’s first five years of production, about 95 per cent of units were sold to the US, where the brand is represented on the east coast by MarineMax – one of the world’s largest boat dealers – and on the west coast by Alexander Marine. The only units not sold to the US were to Singapore, Canada, France and Australia.
However, over the last two years, Aquila has increasingly focused on a worldwide distribution policy that included Eymieu’s appointment to oversee all markets outside of the US – even including Mexico, south of the border.
The announcement of Simpson Marine as its dealer in Greater China and much of Southeast Asia in early 2018 was a statement of intent, while Yacht World was appointed for Korea at the end of the year.
While Multihull Central (Australia) has represented Aquila since 2014, new dealers around the world include Master Yachting (central Europe), Yacht Cancun (Mexico) and more recently Tez Marine (Turkey) and Estupenda (Spain).
Aquila also increased its presence at major shows outside of the USA, exhibiting in Brisbane, Sanctuary Cove and Sydney in Australia, Phuket and Singapore in Asia, and Cannes, Genoa, Barcelona and Zagreb in Europe.
The expansion policy looks to be working as Eymieu and his growing network of dealers help make Aquila an increasingly global brand.
“During the first five years, markets outside the US accounted for less than five per cent of Aquila sales. However, in the fiscal year 2017-18, this new international distribution network accounted for around 25 per cent of sales worldwide,” said Eymieu.
“This was even while the US market kept increasing. In 2017-18, we nearly doubled our annual production.”
Further growth is expected following the recent appointment of multihull specialist Anna Nowotarska as Europe Sales Manager. Nowotarska has over a decade of experience in the yacht industry as a sales manager and broker, most notably with Polish catamaran builder Sunreef.
“With her extensive experience and relationships, Anna will make a wonderful addition to our team and take our sales in Europe to the next level,” said Eymieu, who’s also looking to expand the brand’s presence in South America this year.
Eymieu expects Aquila to return to most of the shows it took part in last year and also make appearances at the Eurasia Boat Show in Turkey, International Multihull Boat Show at La Grande Motte and the Palma International Boat Show in the coming months.
The current range comprises the 30, the fast-selling 36, the popular 44 – one featured at January’s Thailand Yacht Show and RendezVous – and the flagship 48.
The 36 set to display at Singapore in April has been sold into Phuket and is one of the latest hulls in a series that has already sold well over 60 units, although the 44 – unveiled at Miami in 2014 – remains Aquila’s best seller, with almost 90 units. Now, all eyes are on the yard’s smallest powercat and what’s coming next.
“We’ve already received several deposits for the 30 and we’ve also got a new 36 Excursions taxi/patrol boat in production, with several hulls ordered,” Eymieu said. “But there are more new models to come this year.”