The Italian yacht builder Cantieri di Pisa has new ownership once again. It follows a few years of potential promise alternating with uncertainty. A fellow Italian company formally took it over on May 3.
In an interview with the Italian newspaper Il Sole 24 Ore, Enrico Gennasio, a businessman with holdings in manufacturing and real estate, confirmed the deal. He and his brother Guido each have 50 percent stakes through holding companies, namely Meg and Gg Capital. Gennasio additionally explains that they intend to revamp the yard’s models, plus invest in technology for the yachts. Furthermore, they intend to bring an industrial-minded planning approach to the shipyard.
While details on that planning approach are still to come, the approximately 20 remaining employees have job security. It also seems to conclude, finally, a tumultuous past several years for the storied shipyard.
Cantieri di Pisa has been building boats since 1945, rising to international standing in the 1990s. Its Akhir line (pictured) was especially helpful in this regard. Troubles began, however, in 2010, when it shut down operations. Fellow yacht builder Mondomarine acquired it five years later. But, Mondomarine laid off 30 employees in March 2017, and later entered bankruptcy liquidation. Despite Baltic Yachts reportedly making a bid for in the summer of 2018, the bankruptcy court awarded Cantieri di Pisa that October to Sea Finance, a Genoa-based company.
Sea Finance, with backing from Yotha, an online platform connecting charterers directly to yacht owners, held a ribbon-cutting ceremony in February 2019. Although they planned to complete three partially finished Akhir megayachts, those owners never launched any new projects. Neither did they renovate the shipyard facilities.
Earlier this year, Cantieri di Pisa seemed poised for rebirth when Tankoa Yachts announced its intention to buy the shipyard. Vincenzo Poerio, Tankoa’s CEO, stated in January, “We trust that the technical and administrative procedures will have a positive outcome over the next few weeks so that we can begin work to gradually reintegrate resources and become operational.” However, Tankoa Yachts pulled its intent just weeks later. Among the issues: “dilapidated” facilities, according to Poerio, plus questions over financial concessions for the canal upon which the yard sits.
Those concessions no longer appear to be at issue, though. Italian media quote a representative involved in the concessions as saying they’re in place through 2040.
Cantieri di Pisa cantieridipisa.com