Business is good at Turkey’s Tansu Yachts. “This month we launch Echo-R,” says CEO Riza Tansu of his latest 128-foot superyacht, one of six yachts he has on order. With a price tag of $11m, it’s around half the cost of a similar craft built in Germany or Holland.
According to Boat International’s 2016 Global Order Book, Turkey is now the third-largest yacht manufacturer in the world. With up to 40 superyachts currently under construction, this year it could pip Holland to second place behind global leader Italy. So how has the country risen to yacht-building’s major league?
Access to raw materials, for one: in 2016, the world’s first all-wood superyacht, Aquarius, was launched in Istanbul, a 148-foot dreamboat with a jewellery box-like deck that unfolds to become a 925-square-foot party space. Turkey’s other ace card? Speed. Aquarius was built in just 18 months flat: “In terms of the production time, that’s a global first,” says manufacturer Mengi Yay. No wonder it’s all plain sailing for Turkey’s boatyards.