Published: Wednesday, 29 August 2012

Ferretti Eyes New China Plant 1

Ferretti Group has just announced plans to open an assembly plant in Qingdao, one of China’s major trading ports and site of the 2008 Olympic sailing regatta. Its new Chinese parent company, Shandong Heavy Industry Group-Weichai Group, outlined the move as an effort to boost sales in a fast-emerging market – one that has seen the number of ultra-high-net-worth households rise some 20 percent last year alone. Tan Xuguang, Ferretti Group Chairman, commented that the facility would be customising vessels for the growing local market, which saw the sale of 17 Ferretti vessels in 2011.

The news comes just months after Shandong Heavy – China’s largest manufacturer of bulldozers and an enterprise controlled by the Shandong provincial government – bought 75 percent of the Italian yacht-builder for 178 million euros. Ferretti faced imminent bankruptcy in 2009 when creditors eventually agreed to a debt-for-equity swap. The deal with Shandong Heavy was made this January, followed a month later by a successful joint venture between US yacht builder Marquis Yachts and Poly Group, one of China’s largest and most important state-owned enterprises.