YARD UPDATE '07: Mondo Marine

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Full order book for the next three years; and three launches in three months… September 2007

Last year saw Mondo Marine deliver three significant motoryachts in three months.
The first away was the 40.2m (132ft) Streamline, an all-aluminium semi-displacement design by Cor D Cover and with an interior by Frederic Mechiche and Luca Dini. She left in May ’07. Next away was the 41.5m (136ft) all-aluminium trideck motoryacht Panther, which was drawn by Studio Vafiadis. She left in June ’07. And finally the 50.5m (166ft) Tribù left in July ’07.
This latter project, drawn by Luca Dini and Massimo Vignelli, was interesting for a number of reasons. Apart from being Mondo Marine’s biggest launch to date and being built for flambuoyant billionaire Luciano Benetton, founding father and chairman of the 40-plus-year-old ‘United Colors of Benetton’ pop-chic fashion retailer, this steel/aluminium leviathan is the first of her kind to earn RINA ‘Green Star’ status. This is a new voluntary classification that requires yachts to be built to the same exacting standards as the very latest cruise liners. The award is all about limiting pollution potential to an absolute minimum, so a worthy yacht must not leave any environmental trail, meaning everything from engine emissions to all other forms of waste must either be filtered thoroughly or contained.

  Current work in progress at Mondo Marine includes no fewer than seven contracts... 

Energy efficiency too was a key consideration when Tribù’s specification was being worked up. For instance, take her steel hull and aluminium superstructure. They have been painted just like any other yacht, but the metal beneath has been left in a rough-and-ready as-welded condition. Normally yachts such as this get their beautifully polished finishes from tonnes of fairing compound, essentially a filler that is rubbed down laboriously to give a consistent smoothness. Beyond the work involved, and never mind the environmental issues associated with the chemicals in the fillers or the airbourne dust created when fairing, that filler can end up weighing a great deal. And the less the yacht weighs, ultimately the less power will be required to push her along, which of course impacts fuel consumption. And there are many more examples of this sort of thinking aboard Tribù, including the Studio Lissoni interior.
In ’06 Mondo Marine also delivered three significant boats. They were the 49.5m (162ft) O’Ceanos, the 42m (138ft) Kimberly II, and the 45.5m (149ft) Princess Iolanthe.
Current work in progress at Mondo Marine includes no fewer than seven contracts.
Three deliver in ’08. There is one composite semi-displacement 38m (131ft) and two 41m all-aluminium semi-displacement trideckers, one styled by Studio Vafiadis and the other by Cor D Rover.
For delivery in ’09 there is another 41m (135ft) all-aluminium semi-dislacement project to an in-house design, a 49m (161ft) full-displacement steel/aluminium project styled by Cor D Rover, and a all-aluminium 50m (164ft) styled by Studio Vafiadis.
Then for delivery in 2010 there is another all-aluminium 50m (164ft) styled by Studio Vafiadis.
As a rough guide a 40m (131ft) Mondo Marine would weigh in at around €14-17 million and a 50m (164ft) one at nearer €23 million.
“Our order book is essentially full through until the end of 2010,” says the yard’s general manager Diego Deprati. “So business has been very good… But the competition out there means we have to fight for our contracts.”
With a current turnover of around €60 million, the company is family owned. Fernando Stroppiana founded the Mondo industrial group some 60 years ago and his sons, Elio and Ferruccio, run the 30-year-old Mondo Marine business today. The company acquired its present site in Savona back in ‘01, but before that it was located in Genoa where it concentrated latterly on the 30-35m (sector. The Savona site occupies 35,500 square-metres (382,000square-feet), 9,500 square-metres (102,000 square-feet) of which is covered. In all today it employs directly just 35 or so people, but generally when subcontractors are factored in there are estimated to be well over 350 normally at work in the yard. Most of the subcontractors are said to be virtually exclusive to the yard anyway.
When it is not quite so busy with new-build projects, it also does refit work.
The yard sports a 820-ton Travelift and a new shed under construction should boost capacity to around 70m (230ft).

© Phil Draper