Yachting Art Magazine

Boat Rental by Internet - Groupe Bénéteau acquires Digital Nautic (HeyCaptain)

Groupe Bénéteau is pursuing the development of its strategy to broaden its economic model, from a property-based economy to a usage economy.

Boat Rental by Internet - Groupe Bénéteau acquires Digital Nautic (HeyCaptain)

The world of boat rental platforms over the internet is in full swing. While Dream Yacht Charter has just got their hands on SamBoat, the Bénéteau group has just bought Digital Nautic, a Dutch company that has developed HeyCaptain.

Within the Bénéteau Group, the Internet strategy is carried by a specialized subsidiary, Band of Boats, which is developing a nautical platform launched in March 2018, offering two major services:

  • a market place buying / selling boats
  • Weekly rental of sailboats.

It was immediate success for Band of Boats, so it is not surprising that the group decided to reinforce this strategy by taking control of Digital Nautic, whose site, HeyCaptain, connects professionals of the boat rentals with boaters.

The acquisition of Digital Nautic reinforces the skills of the Band of Boats team: the two co-founders, Clément Douet and Etienne Millet, are the capital of this future champion of digital boating. They will respectively occupy the functions of marketing and IT development.

A guarantee of stability, this merger will accelerate the development of new online solutions soon to be offered by Band of Boats.

The Hey Captain solution will continue to be proposed and thus completes the service offer of the Band of Boats platform already present on the weekly rental of sailboats.

Developed by Digital Nautic for the daily rental of motor and sailing boats, it is already used by more than 250 professionals in France, Italy, Spain and Portugal.

On the occasion of this acquisition, Olivier Maynard, President of Band of Boats said to Yachting Art Magazine: "he merger with Digital Nautic is accelerating the development of Band of Boats by now offering the boat for rent by the day and by the week; we continue to pursue our goal of allowing everyone to navigate according to their desires and their means".

Clément Douet, co-founder of Digital Nautic says: "We share a lot of similarities with Band of Boats: a multi-brand approach that puts professionals at the heart of digital transformation, a shared desire to develop solutions which respond to the new ways of consuming, and finally the same European ambition".

Etienne Millet, Co-Founder of Digital Nautic concludes: "This merger is part of our initial vision and represents a real accelerator for Band of Boats. We share our efforts to become a key player in the digitalization of the nautical sector, because there is much at stake for this sector and this operation will lead us to realize projects matching our ambitions ".


Decoding - This acquisition of an internet boat rental platform is very meaningful for the Bénéteau Group, which intends to expand its economic model, from boaters buying a new boat, to those who just prefer to use it (rent, be a member of a Boat Club ...).

By integrating HeyCaptain, Bénéteau will :

  • have the appropriate technology platform;
  • be able to develop with a new clientele;
  • benefit from a business model based on a percentage taken from the contracts signed, an interesting model because it is a recurrent operation.

The boat rental market is all the more strategic for Bénéteau since it is generally not sensitive to economic crises: during the crisis of 2008, the major renters were not been affected, like the example of Dream Yacht Charter shows. Developing in this market should allow Bénéteau to desensitize part of the cyclical and situational variations that characterize the boating market.

Share this post

Comment on this post