Sun­seeker looks to or­der book as it ex­its choppy wa­ters

The Daily Telegraph - Business - - Business - By Alan Tovey

YACHT builder Sun­seeker is reap­ing the re­wards of a re­struc­tur­ing to make pro­duc­tion more ef­fi­cient, and a strat­egy fo­cused on new mod­els.

Af­ter a long run of losses the Poole­based busi­ness re­turned to profit in 2016 as chief ex­ec­u­tive Phil Popham, who joined from Jaguar Land Rover three years ago, in­sti­tuted dis­ci­plines brought from the car in­dus­try and be­gan look­ing at dif­fer­ent mar­ket seg­ments. This in­cluded mov­ing into larger “su­per-yachts” as well as a re­turn to the brand’s roots with the in­tro­duc­tion of smaller power­boats

Up­dat­ing on Sun­seeker’s per­for­mance ahead of the Southamp­ton boat show, which starts on Thurs­day and where the com­pany will re­veal two new mod­els, the 76 Yacht and the Preda­tor 57 MKII, Mr Popham fore­cast a fur­ther im­prove­ment at the busi­ness.

“We have a strong or­der book with 90pc of 2017 ca­pac­ity sold and 50pc of the fol­low­ing year,” said the chief ex­ec­u­tive who nav­i­gated Sun­seeker to £3.5m of un­der­ly­ing earn­ings be­fore in­ter­est, tax, de­pre­ci­a­tion and amor­ti­sa­tion for the year end­ing Dec 2016, com­pared with it be­ing £4m in the red a year be­fore.

Sun­seeker, the lux­ury yacht maker, is on course to im­prove its per­for­mance this year

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