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The Yacht Report - June 2006 - Westport Shipyard: On A Role

Written by Fabio Petrone

Since that time, Westport has developed one of the most sophisticated production lines in the world for building large yachts. In fact, demand for its vessels is so high that two of the shifts are employed at the yard, enabling the production line to operate from 7 am until midnight.

While most boats that enter the production line are sold, a few are not, although Iversen points out that only very rarely does a new yacht get to the end of the line without being purchased. A few lucky owners can buy a new 130 foot yacht without having to wait the year it takes to build one. If you want to upgrade to one of the new 50-metre yachts, you'll have to get in line, though. They are build in order, although the cost saving processes developed on the smaller yachts are incorporated into the yacht production schedule.

For a yacht captain, being a part of the building process consists mostly of staying out of the way as the Westport workers keep production rolling. "The yacht's crew arrives at the end of the building process, but the captain and owner can come at any time," Iversen said.

Westport's present line rates are five 112s per year, five 130s per year, and two 50-metres. The yard will be delivering their third 112-ft in early June, followed by one in August and one in late November. For the 130s, Westport will deliver the next one in late June, followed by one in September and one in December; while hull #2 of the 50-metre series will be delivered in late December, followed by hull #3 in early September 2007.

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