Due to customer requests for more flexibility, AvYachts has a second tier of shared ownership. Now clients can acquire a 10-percent stake, for three weeks of use annually. This is an alternate to the original 20-percent share, for six weeks aboard. In addition, the option extends to any of the three megayachts under AvYachts’ program.
AvYachts (pronounced “ave yachts,” as in “avenue”) began operating last year, with a Westport 112 (below). For a one-fifth share, clients could cruise six weeks aboard every year in different destinations, for a total of five years. The idea was to tap the growing sharing economy, in which consumers (particularly Millennials) seek renting versus owning. Related to this, sharing-economy consumers still seek luxury items and luxurious experiences, but at a lower cost. AvYachts’ fractional program came with additional benefits, too, such as private-jet transport to and from the yacht. Furthermore, through a partnership with Elite Alliance, AvYachts clients could trade one of their yacht weeks for a stay at a villa or other luxury residence.
According to Kathy Kennedy, COO of AvYachts, some customers still wanted to enjoy the yachting lifestyle but didn’t feel they could commit to six weeks annually. “By adding this alternative, we have listened to our owners and become as flexible as they need us to be to accommodate their lives,” she explains. For perspective, the 10-percent share in the Westport 112 starts at $995,000.
Furthermore, AvYachts now has a Westport 130 and a Westport 164 in its fleet. Whether clients choose the 20- or 10-percent stake, they still get five total years of use. Also, they still have their personal photos, linen preferences, and more put in place by the crew prior to arrival onboard each time. Furthermore, AvYachts still sells the megayacht at that point and provides a share of proceeds to customers.
In related news, AvYachts says it plans to add more cruising destinations for customers. Currently, the company offers the Bahamas, the British Virgin Islands, South Florida, and New England. Popular places in Europe and elsewhere are under consideration.