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Tankoa in process of acquiring Cantieri di Pisa

Business
Written by
Justin Ratcliffe

The historic Cantieri di Pisa shipyard is set to change hands yet again. After more than two months of negotiations, Tankoa Yachts is in the final stages of due diligence prior to acquiring the yard from Sea-Finance (a group of investors that includes Philippe Bacou, yacht owner and founder of the online charter service Yotha). Cantieri di Pisa shipyardPhoto: Merijn de Waard / SuperYacht Times“We had been looking elsewhere for opportunities as there is no possibility to expand our facility and build bigger in Genoa,” says Vincenzo Poerio, CEO of Tankoa Yachts. “Our attention centred on Cantieri di Pisa, which was at a standstill and close to collapse again. The acquisition represents a strategic investment by Tankoa of around €13 million to complement our current production from 45-50 metres in Genoa, but also compete in a wider market by reviving the Cantieri di Pisa brand and drawing on iconic designs from the past and completely new models from 30-45 metres.” 

The plan is to begin re-hiring workers currently on redundancy pay starting 1 June 2021, and the hope is that the acquisition marks the final chapter in the chequered recent history of Cantieri di Pisa. Solo yacht by Tankoa in St BarthsPhoto: Phillip SilversteinFounded in 1945 on the banks of the River Arno, the shipyard became famous for its planing motor yachts, notably the Akhir series designed by Pierluigi Spadolini. The brand was acquired along with Baglietto by the Camuzzi Group in 2005, but both yards closed their doors in 2010 when Camuzzi succumbed to the financial crisis. Baglietto was bought by the Gavio Group two years later, but Cantieri di Pisa was not part of the deal. Tankoa emblemPhoto: Justin Ratcliffe / SuperYacht TimesThe shipyard was then acquired by Mondomarine in 2015 and Luca Dini was hired to redesign the Akhir and Kitalpha series. When Mondomarine went into liquidation, Cantieri di Pisa was shut down yet again. 

Baltic Yachts was reported to be interested in acquiring the shipyard, but the offer from Sea-Finance in 2019 was uncontested during the auction clearing that followed Mondomarine’s bankruptcy.   

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