Insight: The team behind project Black Shark on doing things differently

Written by Laura Nicholls

As one of the most secretive and exclusive superyacht builders in the world, the doors of the Nobiskrug shipyard have been opened for the first time, where the North German builder has laid the foundations of one of its most exciting new build projects to date - the 77-metre superyacht Black Shark.Nobiskrug project 793 by Winch DesignUnlike previous Nobiskrug projects that have gone before, a selection of the media has been granted access to the entire build process. The activities going on behind the shed doors are often kept private and information is usually difficult to obtain, but this time, SuperYacht Times has a front row seat to watch the creation of Nobiskrug’s latest from start to finish. Yacht Black Shark Keel Laying at NobiskrugPhoto: NobiskrugBlack Shark has pulled together some of the industry’s leaders, all of whom have agreed to make this a project like no other. Kicking things off, in April last year Nobiskrug announced that the Black Shark project will involve industry heavyweights Winch Design and Sinot Yacht Architecture & Design as well as Imperial, which has acted as the broker in the sale of this new project and will continue as owner’s representative and construction supervisor throughout the build. 

Black Shark yacht renderingPhoto: Winch DesignHaving already laid the keel of the new build earlier this year, the team are tactfully drip-feeding enticing details about Black Shark. As her name suggests, she takes inspiration from the king of the ocean and this is evident throughout her design. To give her an imposing presence on the water, Black Shark will feature a matte black hull to mimic the texture of shark skin and a metallic superstructure colour. The vessel’s most notable standout feature and one that was reportedly re-designed nearly 20 times is the mast, which is designed to look like a shark fin. According to Black Shark’s designers, her enthusiastic owner knew exactly what he wanted and was keen to create a superyacht of this style from the very beginning - something which has majorly contributed to the smooth-running of the project so far.      

Now with a permanent team who are working daily in the shipyard, progress is moving fast. Here, we share the beginning of the Black Shark story with insights from members of top management at the four main companies involved in bringing this project to life: Nobiskrug, Imperial, Winch Design and Sinot Yacht Architecture & Design.

Black Shark yacht renderingPhoto: Winch Design

What does the team hope to achieve with this approach of revealing the entire build process to a selection of the media? 

Nobiskrug: Holger Kahl, Managing Director: It is the valuable insight of the project that will give the media despite the secrecy that often surrounds new builds. The open approach stands Nobiskrug apart from the competition. It’s also a chance to give the media the opportunity to see the yard’s innovative approach to new builds, as well as obtain a first-hand understanding of the skill and craftsmanship involved in building a custom superyacht from scratch. This all began in 2017 when we received the call from a very serious client who wanted a yacht and so we left on a plane immediately. A letter of intent was signed at the Monaco Boat Show 2017 and then the following November we agreed on a contract to build a fantastic looking yacht. These are challenges Nobiskrug likes! Especially after tough final negotiations. 

Imperial: Evgeniy Kochman, CEO: Nobiskrug and ourselves want to give a clearer understanding of our industry. We can demonstrate how these exclusive creations come to life and showcase the people behind them. We will not only reveal this exciting 77-metre superyacht to the world, but a vision from the inside like it was never done before!

Winch Design: Andrew Winch, Founder and Creative Director: We want to show how unique this project is as it is so emotionally connected to the client. This is good to show, as it is not just a brief that needs to be developed… the owner saw Black Shark and said “that is the one I want”, that’s why it has stayed so pure from the very beginning. 

Sinot Yacht Design: Sander Sinot, Director: It is not usually modest to say but this process it allowing us to reflect very much the way we work. It is well organised and feels natural for us and we are happy that our fellow creatives in the industry have gifted us with this process! Eventually, we will share our details, but the way we work is we are very strong with the visuals. Black Shark  yacht keel laying at NobiskurgPhoto: NobiskrugHow would you describe the working dynamic between the contributing companies? 

Imperial: Nick Flashman, Project Manager: The only way to build and deliver a successful project to any client has to be with teamwork being at the forefront of the philosophy. Having already collaborated with Nobiskrug in the past is a real advantage: we know each other, we share the same approach and the same attention to detail, we are not starting from scratch. This advantage will dramatically contribute to the positive dynamic of the project itself.

Nobiskrug: Rainer Stobrawa, Project Manager: In a complex project like this, various collaborators and suppliers are involved throughout the process. Many of the partners have previously worked on Nobiskrug projects, so a good working relationship exists already and everybody will be able to witness first-hand the level of understanding cultivated over time and required to deliver a smooth transition from concept to completion.

Winch Design: Andrew Winch, Founder and Creative Director: We have tried working with Imperial and Nobiskrug on different projects and sizes but at the time it didn’t go ahead. So now we are very excited to work with Imperial CEO Evgeniy Kochman and his team. Everyone is very on top of things and Nick is very good at controlling us all! We have wanting to work with Fadi Pataq, creative director at Nobiskrug, for the last three years and have been saying that we are going to build a boat together so it is great to have made it finally work! 

Sinot Yacht Design: Sander Sinot, Director: The owner sees it a little bit like a superstar team! We have worked with Imperial before, but it is the first project we have worked with Nobiskrug and have a pleasant cooperation with Andrew Winch. The whole collaboration has been very successful so far. Nobiskrug Yacht Black Shark Keel LayingPhoto: ImperialDo you think it is important for other new-build projects to follow suit and reveal more about their build processes? 

Imperial: Evgeniy Kochman, CEO: I think it is important to share this moment because it is like the first few months of a baby’s life! First and foremost we have to respect all confidentiality, but with permission, for example, we decided that it would be interesting for those who like yachting to witness the keel laying ceremony. In general, I think this project offers a unique opportunity to see and share the traditions and crafts of the marine industry.

Nobiskrug: Rainer Stobrawa, Project Manager: This is something that will wholly depend on the owners involved. Transparency is not something that clients are particularly keen on for a number of reasons: they wish the financial information to remain private, and they often have security issues to think of too. The whole idea of a superyacht is to protect their privacy and downtime with their family, so the likelihood is that this will not change much in the industry. Nobiskrug is therefore delighted to be able to step out from the shadows and provide this unique opportunity. 

Winch Design: Andrew Winch, Founder and Creative Director: The client liked our work and this is what good projects are about - which should be shared! With these collaborations between the shipyard, engineers, naval architects, interiors, concepts, painters... it’s all good partnerships and for this type of project, it (really) only works if the collective is passionate and considerate of one another. 

Sinot Yacht Design: Sander Sinot, Director: It’s has been a very thorough process but also a very pleasant and smooth one to be a part of, especially with the owner, which has been translated into fast results and allowed us to reveal what we have so far. It makes for an easy life as we are able to manage the whole project and communicate directly with the client. We fully recommend this open approach!

Black Shark yacht rendering Stay tuned, as SuperYacht Times will reveal more details about project Black Shark as they become available. To follow the project, check back on SuperYacht Times over the course of the next 18 months, or contact the team directly via the details provided below. 



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