Electrical system integrator Alewijnse is launching a major initiative that will see it working with superyacht yards around the world to lower their production costs without any loss of build quality. The key to the success of this program is Alewijnse’s unique global network of subsidiary companies that allows it to offer skilled labour at competitive prices, yet trained to Dutch standards of delivery and finish.
The initiative will be headed by Kees van Doorn in his new role of Business Development Manager Yachts. An experienced member of the Alewijnse team, he will lead the drive to demonstrate to superyacht yards across Europe and beyond how Alewijnse can provide comprehensive electrical installation packages staffed by skilled technicians from Alewijnse subsidiaries in Romania, Turkey, China and elsewhere, overseen by Dutch project managers. The combination of major savings on labour costs and assured quality has already proved attractive to existing Alewijnse clients, and this move will now make it available to the wider market.
Kees and his team will also act as advisors to superyacht yards on the technological options available to their clients. Alewijnse has long been at the forefront of integrating emerging electro-mechanical technologies into the superyacht sector, aided in part by its extensive experience in the commercial sector where environmental standards have intensified dramatically in recent years. Work on ground-breaking projects such as the E3 harbour tug with its diesel-electric hybrid drive, the fuel cell canal boat now operating in Amsterdam and the renowned eco-sailing yacht Ethereal place Alewijnse at the forefront of the sector and ensure that it has unrivalled links with the companies and institutions developing the next generation of products.
Key markets in the immediate future will be Germany, Turkey and Italy, where reducing costs without compromising quality is a particular priority in the face of Asian competition, but Kees van Doorn sees potential for further growth.
“European quality is particularly attractive to superyacht clients, wherever their yachts are constructed,” he comments, “and with the increasing complexity of onboard electronics these individuals seek the reliability and peace of mind that comes with a first-class installation.”
That complexity has been one of the key factors in the rapid growth that Alewijnse has seen in demand for its services in recent years. “It’s been driven partly by the increase in the volume and variety of equipment that owners are specifying for their yachts,” continues Van Doorn, “but the real advance has been in automation. As the yachts get larger and the systems – particularly those associated with energy conservation and reclamation – more sophisticated, automation becomes a necessity for the yacht to operate effectively. Much of the technology is just too advanced for the average superyacht crewmember to maintain and, as on commercial and military vessels, the systems are now designed to manage themselves and be remotely configured and adjusted by qualified technicians.”
With superyachts set to become even more complex in the future these trends are likely to work to the advantage of electrical integrators like Alewijnse, but few if any have its ability to offer all the benefits of out-sourcing to lower-cost economies while maintaining rigorous quality-control and access to the most advanced design techniques and products. It is this set of capabilities that leaves Alewijnse well placed to take advantage of the winds of change that are currently blowing through the sector.