At long last, a superyacht coatings deal
AMSTERDAM ~ The superyacht industry has reached closure on a contentious issue. After years of debate, consensus emerged at the Dec. 11-12 International Superyachts Coating Conference to inject some order and predictability in the chaos of superyacht coatings.
“The coatings issue _ notably how paint jobs are judged _ is an old sore in the industry,” says Albert Willemsen, environmental consultant at the International Council of Marine Industry Associations.
The coatings conference, hosted by the International Council of Marine Industry Associations (ICOMIA) and the Superyacht Builders Association coincided with the graduation of the first 12 or so Registered Marine Coatings Inspectors from the International Institute of Marine Surveyors. “Within a few years, there will be more than 100 certified coatings surveyors operating worldwide,” says Willemsen.
SYBAss Operational Director Robert van Tol says the course “is an important step forward. It will increase the knowledge of superyachts specifics among already experienced coatings inspectors and provide a format for report writing.”
Importantly, the new course is bound to end a culture of finger-pointing when a paint job is deemed to be shoddy by one inspector but alright by another. The RMCI course establishes, for the first time, common norms to judge superyacht paint jobs. The course focuses on different coatings, application methods and finishes as well as identifying defects, resolving difficulties and offering advice to clients, boat yards, applicators and finishers. Licensed inspectors can put RMCI after their names and will be bound by a code of ethics. Their license will be valid for 5 years, renewable based on an electronic log of inspections carried out. It is expected the course will graduate some 200 licensed inspectors within 2 years.
As superyachts get more numerous, bigger and pricier, owners, brokers, builders, yards and suppliers are all seen to benefit from more predictability in how coatings are judged.