Cantieri di Pisa is back in business

The iconic Italian boat builder has been acquired by new investors and is gearing up to restart production. Cantieri di Pisa has been acquired by Sea-Finance, a group of investors that includes Philippe Bacou, yacht owner and founder of the online charter service Yotha.

Heading up the new management team is Simone Marconcini, formerly with Nautor’s Swan, Logica Yachts and Mondomarine. He is working with Sea-Finance, chairman Pietro Comerro and Salvatore Pisano of Navicelli di Pisa to re-establish Cantieri di Pisa as a premium brand.

“Our first task has been to invest in the facilities to make the shipyard operational again after such a long period of closure and 23 personnel have been reinstated,” says Marconcini. “After reopening for business on 1 st November, we quickly had a contract to refit an Akhir 85 (ex. Maestral). We are now looking to finish and sell three Akhir yachts already in the yard, and negotiations with prospective clients are underway. The next phase is to launch a business plan that will see a redesigned and re-engineered range, including the Akhir, to carry the brand into the future. We are in contact with various Italian designers and naval architects and an announcement will be made shortly.”

The three yachts available for sale include two Akhir 108 models and one Akhir 118, all designed by Carlo Galeazzi. One of the 108 units is 80% complete, while the second and the 118 are still in the early stages of construction, but all have MTU engines already installed with updated warranties.

Founded in 1945 on the banks of the river Arno, Cantieri di Pisa became famous for its planing motor yachts named after various constellations, notably the Akhir series designed by Pierluigi Spadolini.

The yard was acquired along with Baglietto by the Camuzzi Group in 2005. The Akhir models were subsequently redesigned by Carlo Galeazzi and the fibreglass hulls were built in Tunisia.

When the Camuzzi succumbed to the financial crisis, both Baglietto and Cantieri di Pisa closed their doors in 2010. Baglietto was acquired by the Gavio Group two years later, but Cantieri di Pisa was not part of the deal.

The shipyard was eventually bought by Mondomarine in 2015 and Luca Dini was hired to redesign the Akhir and Katalpha series. When Mondomarine went into liquidation, Cantieri di Pisa shut down yet again. Last year, Baltic Yachts was reported to be interested in acquiring the shipyard, but the offer from Sea-Finance was uncontested during the auction clearing that followed Mondomarine ’s bankruptcy.