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Sailing - German Bente Yachts shipyard in bankruptcy

It's not easy for a niche shipyard to survive in a sector as capital-intensive as boating and leisure. After Ofcet, Ocqueteau and Fora Marine in France, it is the turn of the German Bente Yachts to make the sad experience, which has just been placed in receivership.

Sailing - German Bente Yachts shipyard in bankruptcy

A forerunner of this decision on February 3rd, the absence of Bente Yachts on the Düsseldorf Boot had made a lot of noise this year, after a 2019 edition where the shipyard was clearly showing off its new flagship, the Bente 39.

Based in Bremerhaven, on the North Sea, the German shipyard Bente is undoubtedly one of the most striking European shipyards in recent years, both in its range of boats and in its communication.

Launched in 2014, the Bente 24 is a yacht that is out of the ordinary with its modern design, its well-protected cockpit and its marine qualities and its quite low price. These are all characteristics that the shipyard will skillfully highlight on social networks, to gain notoriety and make this first model a success. It will sell nearly 120 of them!

Bente wants to capitalize on this success by presenting a 39-footer at the end of 2018, the Bente 39 its flagship, whose interior is characterized by a modern design, fairly minimalist, RM Yachts-style design, and unique luminosity, thanks to huge zenith and side windows. The boat creates the buzz on the Boot and the queue is long before you can hope to get on board. At last, the Yard will have sold only two hulls, due to a question of price...

It is precisely the development of this successful boat that seems to be at the root of the difficulties of the yard, faced with a strong need for investment and payment delays. This is a classic situation for small shipyards, faced with strong growth, but also with production costs that are too high for off-market purchase prices, compared with giants such as Bénéteau, HanseGroup or Bavaria.

Deciphering - Bente Yachts is now looking for a buyer who will be able to provide the necessary capital for its working capital requirements and investments. A sustainable future would undoubtedly consist of a takeover by a major player in the sector, who is not a common sight. The name HanseGroup is on everyone's lips, and over the years it has skillfully developed by taking over brands in difficulty, then saturating a very high-performance industrial facility based in former East Germany...

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The Bente 24 was a success with 120 units built. But you cannot make profit with a low cost 24-footer. So the 39 was built, but it was targeting to a completely new customer base. Buyers with money. If you have a budget of 300K or more, you can choose from a wide range of boats. As a result, only 2 boats had been sold. And at least one of them is reporting severe quality problems