Princess Yachts to recruit more staff as boat sales go into orbit

By | April 17, 2018

Antony Sheriff, Executive Chairman at Princess Yachts (Image: John Allen)

Princess Yachts is expecting to recruit even more workers in Plymouth after seeing profits jump £7.9 million and its order book hit £750 million.

The Stonehouse-headquartered company took on 500 workers in the past year to bring staff numbers to 2,700.

And executive chairman Antony Sheriff said that with growth continuing the firm expects to be increasing its workforce as it anticipates 2018 being even more successful than 2017 was.

“We are continuing to develop and build the business so we anticipate bringing on more people,” he said.

Mr Sheriff took part in a Q&A session with Herald Business minutes after announcing the company’s results for the year to December 31, 2017, and just before jetting to the Singapore Yacht Show.

The firm will display seven boats and the four-day show will see the Asian premieres of the Princess 30M and Princess 55, and show debuts for the Princess 62 and S65.

The 88 Motor Yacht, award-winning 75 Motor Yacht and the Princess 68 are also in Asia. Mr Sheriff is hoping the show will boost sales which have already gone into orbit following success at the Cannes, Southampton and London shows, and at the world-famous Düsseldorf boat show, in Germany, where Princess sold 24 yachts, adding £30 million to its order book in January 2018.

It is a huge turnaround for the Plymouth-based firm, which in 2017 announced a £7million loss. But after a stellar year the firm has seen turnover jump 26.6 per cent to £274.4 million. That represents the firm’s highest sales figure in its 53-year history.

Mr Sheriff said the company is now forging ahead with plans to grow even more – and that will be partly fuelled by delivering “interesting concepts” such as the new R-Class.

“The “revolutionary” carbon fibre R35 sports boat which will feature an innovative active foil system and a stunning colour scheme based on the dazzle ships of the early 20th century. We will be launching other new classes of boats in the future,” Mr Sheriff said. He went on to say “Princess has built an order book worth £750 million, so we have long term visibility which is enormously important to the stability and success of the company. In 2018, we will launch six new yachts, so we expect this success to continue. This is all part of our four-year £100million investment plan in products and facilities that was kicked off in 2016.”

Story and images from the Herald Business