Com­pa­nies: In­ter­view wi­th Lu­ca Bol­dri­ni Pic­chiot­ti’s Sa­les Di­rec­tor

Superyacht - - What’s On - In­ter­view by Ro­ber­to Fran­zo­ni

“My func­tions and re­spon­si­bi­li­ties com­pri­se the de­ve­lo­p­ment of new pro­duc­ts, marketing stra­te­gies and their im­ple­men­ta­tion and brand con­so­li­da­tion, li­ke Pe­ri­ni Na­vi whi­ch is the lea­ding brand in the me­ga sai­ler seg­ment”. To quo­te from Lu­ca Bol­dri­ni’s own words who was pre­viou­sly a bril­liant Sa­les Di­rec­tor for CRN and has re­cen­tly mo­ved on to the we­st coa­st to ta­ke the helm at Pic­chiot­ti’s, a re­no­w­ned brand ow­ned by Pe­ri­ni Na­vi wi­th the ob­vious goal to mul­ti­ply its suc­cess. Bol­dri­ni adds – “We ju­st star­ted, I ar­ri­ved in Ju­ne and we star­ted by re­bran­ding the com­pa­ny, to get it clo­ser to Pe­ri­ni, wi­th the sa­me co­lours, sha­pe, con­ten­ts all this to mo­ve Pic­chiot­ti clo­ser to Pe­ri­ni Na­vi. But wi­th a di­ver­se pro­duct, even if the work­for­ce is the sa­me, the shi­pyard is the sa­me, the ca­pa­ci­ty and know –how are the sa­me.the­re’s on­ly one com­ple­te­ly dif­fe­rent marketing and com­mu­ni­ca­tion po­li­cy whi­ch dif­fers. I per­so­nal­ly asked: “why don’t we call it Pe­ri­ni Mo­to­rya­cht?” sin­ce the na­me Pic­chiot­ti sticks wi­th so­me dif­fi­cul­ty, and Ame­ri­cans pro­noun­ce it wi­th a soft soun­ding “c”. But Si­gnor Pe­ri­ni sho­wed me things from a dif­fe­rent view point. When he pur­cha­sed the com­pa­ny he pro­mi­sed to wa­ke it up, by way of re­spect for a great fa­mi­ly and a great ce­le­bri­ty that Pic­chiot­ti on­ce was.this is of great va­lue. Si­gnor Pe­ri­ni’s thin­king is that Pic­chiot­ti and Be­net­ti brought and in­tro­du­ced ya­ch­ting to the Ver­si­lia re­gion and to Tu­sca­ny. Pic­chiot­ti built grand ya­ch­ts li­ke a 104 me­tre for the Sau­dis, has built ya­ch­ts wi­th Gil­ge­na­st and Ban­nen­berg, that no one knew of in Ita­ly at the ti­me. His fa­mi­ly can be tra­ced back to 1575 and is still the ol­de­st shi­pyard in the world to­ let this he­ri­ta­ge go would be cri­mi­nal. On the other hand it has ne­ver had, nor en­joyed in­di­vi­dual iden­ti­ty for a gi­ven pro­­ce-ver­sa when you spot a Pe­ri­ni ri­se up from the ho­ri­zon you can’t mi­sta­ke it for any­thing el­se be­cau­se it is ju­st so ve­ry re­co­gni­za­ble. Si­gnor Pe­ri­ni has asked me to do the ve­ry sa­me thing for Pic­chiot­ti too. The ele­ment bo­th brands share or ha­ve in com­mon is to be found in the ow­ners. In bo­th ca­ses Pe­ri­ni and Pic­chiot­ti ow­ners are ya­ch­tsmen prin­ci­pal­ly, ma­ny even ve­ry di­scer­ning ones that crui­se for ma­ny mi­les at a ti­me. This is whe­re Pic­chiot­ti stands out of the cho­rus li­ne of the sa­me seg­ment in Ita­ly too. And what’s mo­re it’s ju­st that this com­pa­ny has al­ways de­mon­stra­ted, and does so cur­ren­tly: that Ita­lian shi­pyards are ca­pa­ble of de­li­ve­ring qua­li­ty, con­si­sten­tly and ti­me af­ter ti­me, and not on­ly good looks. We are pro­du­cing qua­li­ty we aren’t cha­sing num­bers or vo­lu­me”. What’s the mar­ket doing, how’s it going? I be­lie­ve that from he­re on in­to the fo­re­seea­ble fu­tu­re the­re won’t be re­quests enou­gh to su­stain hef­ty pro­duc­tion. Fi­gu­res speak for them­sel­ves and they’re sho­wing we’ve go­ne back to the be­gin­ning of the ni­ne­ties mar­ket le­vel. In­stead of ha­ving 115/120 ya­ch­ts over the 40 me­tre mark, to­day, we’re loo­king at 44/46 sold to the fi­nal client. Ano­ther 30 or so are built on spe­cu­la­tion. In a nu­tshell we’ve re­tur­ned to the sa­me va­lues we had 25 years ago. At that ti­me Be­net­ti was tur­ning out two per year, CRN one. Pic­chiot­ti may­be one eve­ry two years. Fead­ship two, Lürs­sen one, and Amels two. To­day to fill Lürs­sen’s or­der book you need ten, to fill CRN you need fif­teen, and to fill Be­net­ti twen­ty. Whe­re will all the­se clien­ts be? The pro­blem is that we Ita­lians ha­ve ma­de a mi­sta­ke and we’re not doing any­thing to fix it. The Dut­ch dif­fe­ren­tia­ted pro­duc­tion in terms of si­ze, design and pri­cing. Hee­sen of­fers se­mi di­spla­cing alu­mi­nium ya­ch­ts bet­ween 40 and 55 me­tres. Amels goes from 60 to 70 me­tres wi­th di­spla­cing hulls of­fe­ring hi­gh qua­li­ty in the se­mi cu­stom ran­ge and ve­ry clas­sic, tra­di­tio­nal li­nes. Fead­ship goes from 70 to 100 me­tres wi­th clas­sic and in­no­va­ti­ve so­lu­tions be­low decks. The pri­ce seg­men­ta­tion is al­so clear: Hee­sen is on the bot­tom rung of the lad­der, Amels in the midd­le and Fead­ship is on the top rung. Of cour­se the­re can be a client who’s sit­ting astri­de bet­ween one or the other, but the po­si­tio­ning is clear. And in Ita­ly? We all over­lap. Whe­re one goes the other cha­ses/ fol­lo­ws af­ter. Whi­le at CRN we had gi­ven our­sel­ves a clear set of ob­jec­ti­ves:we would hand­le the 60 to 75 me­tre seg­ment. At that ti­me Be­net­ti was pla­ced to ser­ve the 50 to 60 me­tre clien­te­le. We we­re pu­shing to stick to our seg­ment, but no soo­ner had we got a foot in­si­de the ni­che we we­re fol­lo­wed and al­so over­ta­ken si­ze wi­se. Other pain­ful mi­sta­kes are that Ita­lians con­tract work out to the sa­me ar­chi­tec­ts, the end pro­duc­ts are ve­ry si­mi­lar and they li­ke to count on vo­lu­me, on quan­ti­ty. Pe­ri­ni on the other hand does not do that. They’ve bet­ted on ori­gi­na­li­ty, on ve­ry hi­gh qua­li­ty whi­ch has been clear­ly per­cei­ved and wi­de­ly ap­pre­cia­ted all over the An­glo Sa­xon

and ‘Nor­dic’ ya­ch­ting worlds. What then is Pe­ri­ni Na­vi’s and Pic­chiot­ti’s stra­te­gy? I ha­ve to laun­ch a sai­ling yacht and a mo­tor yacht eve­ry year and eve­ry year I ha­ve to sell a sai­ling yacht and a mo­tor yacht so as to ha­ve four uni­ts in the shi­pyard at all ti­mes, two to laun­ch and two to com­ple­te. How does that trans­la­te in terms of ty­po­lo­gy and di­men­sion? We kic­ked off from si­zes ran­ging from 50 to 75 me­tres wi­th ve­ry per­so­na­li­sed and ori­gi­nal li­nes. The idea being to tie in wi­th Pe­ri­ni Na­vi’s di­men­sions wi­th the sa­me ran­ge pat­tern: 39/40 me­tres, 47/50 me­tres,56/60 me­tres, 70 me­tres and beyond. To­day the­re’s a deep di­vi­ding li­ne in the mar­ket for tho­se ya­ch­tsmen wi­shing to sail around the world. The mar­ket is ve­ry ac­ti­ve for pro­duc­ts bet­ween 40 and 50 me­tres, be­low 500 Grt, and the­re’s a void spa­ce in terms of si­ze around the 60 me­tre seg­ment, whi­le the­re’s plen­ty going on over the 70 me­tre ran­ge, wi­th an un­de­ci­phe­ra­ble ten­den­cy to mea­su­re­men­ts ex­cee­ding 100 me­tres, whi­ch I be­lie­ve is ano­ther tem­po­ra­ry bub­ble. We be­lie­ve that the 40 to 60 me­tre slot could well re­pre­sent Pic­chiot­ti’s be­st bet yet, ac­com­pa­nied by a pos­si­ble ten­den­cy to at­tract spe­cial pro­jec­ts bet­ween 70/90 me­tres. The­re­fo­re you’re loo­king to de­ve­lop so­me­thing smal­ler than the cur­rent Vi­tru­vius ran­ge? Yes but fo­cu­sing on in­no­va­tion, an in­na­te fea­tu­re of Pe­ri­ni’s, as was do­ne on 73 me­tre Gra­ce E, dri­ven by die­sel-elec­tric en­gi­nes and dy­na­mic po­si­tio­ning or li­ke on Exu­ma, the 50 me­tre Ice Class alu­mi­nium ex­plo­rer mo­del. Pic­chiot­ti to­day is the on­ly brand wi­th a light al­loy ex­plo­rer crui­sing the world re­len­tles­sly. Ow­ners go to Pic­chiot­ti for the­se fea­tu­res. The la­te­st yacht we ha­ve sold a 52 me­tre, goes to an ow­ner who pos­ses­ses se­ve­ral di­ver­se ya­ch­ts and is one who li­kes to spend mu­ch of his ti­me on board and who li­kes blen­ding good ae­sthe­tics wi­th ve­ry in­ten­se crui­sing.this is why he ca­me to Pic­chiot­ti. Are you tal­king about a Vi­tru­vius by Briand? Well it de­ri­ves from tho­se li­nes and con­cept, It is built in steel and alu­mi­nium al­loy, but pos­ses­ses mo­re vo­lu­me than Exu­ma and Ga­li­leo G. do. We’re wor­king on the de­fi­ni­tion of our own li­ne. In the th­ree Pic­chiot­ti mo­to­rya­ch­ts the “Vi­tru­vius” con­cept ca­me out mo­re than the “Pic­chiot­ti’s” did. Tho­se th­ree are a fai­th­ful ex­pres­sion of Briand’s li­­day we want to co­me up wi­th our own li­ne, the Pic­chiot­ti li­ne. A li­ne you can find he­re alo­ne. Wi­th whom are you plan­ning to do this? We’re cur­ren­tly de­ci­ding on this. We’re de­ve­lo­ping ve­ry ori­gi­nal and spe­cial pro­jec­ts wi­th other ar­chi­tec­ts, li­ke Nau­ta design, Zuc­con In­ter­na­tio­nal Pro­ject, whi­ch will la­ter un­der­sco­re our Pic­chiot­ti li­ne. And this is the fir­st step. The se­cond one is to di­spel, de­bunk the ima­ge An­glo Sa­xons and Nor­th Eu­ro­peans ha­ve of the Ita­lians: the ya­ch­ts don’t la­st long, they need re­fit­ting af­ter a cou­ple of years, they’re not re­lia­ble. Exu­ma has now got mo­re than 100,000 nau­ti­cal mi­les un­der her belt in near­ly se­ven years and looks new. This clear­ly de­mon­stra­tes the we too know how to build ya­ch­ts well “Blue Wa­ter” ones li­ke Pe­ri­ni’s slo­ga­ni. For fur­ther in­for­ma­tion­ri­ni­na­

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