Yachting Art Magazine

What impact has the Covid-19 epidemic had to date for the Bénéteau Group?

The Covid-19 outbreak currently raging around the world is disrupting production flows, travel and the organization of events. What impact will this have on the construction of pleasure boats? The Bénéteau Group has just provided some initial indications in this area.

What impact has the Covid-19 epidemic had to date for the Bénéteau Group?

In the current context, where it is difficult to make any forecasts, the French pleasure boat building giant, which has industrial facilities in France, Poland, Italy and the United States, and which markets its various ranges of sailing boats, motor boats and catamarans all over the world (Bénéteau, Jeanneau, Lagoon, Prestige, Excess, CNB, Monte Carlo Yachts, Delphia, Scarab, Four Winns, Glastron, Wellcraft), has just detailed the actions put in place following the development of the Covid 19 epidemic, and its impact to date on its business. This gives an initial idea of the first consequences of the epidemic on the upstream branch (construction) of the Nautical Industries sector.

In a press release, the group chaired by Jérôme de Metz, specified the measures already put in place by the group, and the current impact of the epidemic on its level of activity.

As a measure to protect its employees, the Bénéteau Group has postponed or cancelled all events and employee travel to infected areas, and has put in place precautionary and information systems at all its production sites, in France and abroad, in order to optimize prevention of the infection.

From a commercial point of view, the group claims to be little affected by the epidemic.

For the Leisure Housing business, most of the orders were taken in the first half of the year. The sector's next major commercial event is scheduled for June in France. To date, it has been maintained.  

Boating - the majority of orders already taken

For the Boat business, the Bénéteau Group points out that the main boat shows in the northern hemisphere (Europe and North America) - areas where the Group generates 80% of its Boat sales - were all held in the first half of the year.

The organizers of several regional boat shows in Asia and the Middle East have decided to cancel or postpone their events. The Asian market accounts for less than 4% of the Boat Division's sales (3.9% in fiscal 2018-2019), 75% of which are generated in China. The Chinese and more generally Asian markets have been declining for several years. This drop in orders therefore predates the appearance of the Covid-19 epidemic. 

Normal operation of Italian industrial sites

Of the 26 production sites operated by Groupe Beneteau worldwide, two are located in the Friuli Venezia Giulia and Emilia Romagna regions. These two Italian plants are currently operating normally.

As regards supplies from countries affected by the Covid-19 epidemic (China and Italy), the Group does not regret any disruption and is even observing a resumption of production at the Chinese plants concerned. The delay currently experienced in the supply chain will be compensated for by the introduction of air transport.

To date, the Beneteau Group's production is therefore only marginally affected by the Covid-19 epidemic.

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