It’s time to change. This is Elan Yachts’ watchword, as Marine Division Executive Director Marko Skrbin explained to us during our encounter at last Boot Dusseldorf just a few days after his appointment.
Your market strategy makes you deal with boats and communication, doesn’t it?
Yes, it does. We’ve already started with the new Elan Gt5. Our strategy has to come back to what we did 15 years ago. Boats should be not clearly separated but they should provide owners with custom contents. A clear example of what I’m saying comes from the Gt5. Our goal is not to build a top boat for professional racers but a boat which can be fast and make the non-professional race feel good, guaranteeing the highest comfort levels in cruise.
How this market strategy is expressed?
Trough three interpretation keys: boats’ versatility, enhancement of the past heritage, promotion of engineers, technicians and craftsmen’ s know-how. Our skilled workforce and excellent tradition should be emphasized. These are the three key elements to draw up the new Elan’s strategy.
This was the result of a detailed market analysis during which we have met our customers and dealers and we have realized that our boats were perceived as too technical, too sporty yet little comfortable. The Gt5 marked the beginning of our new approach. Take, for example, the cockpit and the bow of this boat, both are well-equipped in order to guarantee the best comfort when sailing. However, the boat has preserved its sporty fast character. The lines used so far were Impression, which consisted of top cruisers, E and S, totally sporty. Except for the Impression line, which will continue to be a line reserved for the chartering market, we’ve decided to grasp the positive elements of the Elan and Sport lines and put them together. These choices result from the fact that we’ve clearly identified the typical Elan’s owners. They are mainly men, between 45 and 55, with a long sailing experience and at least one, if not two or three, Elan boats in their purchases history. They clearly know what they want from a boat.
As I’ve already told you, most of changes have already taken on by the Gt5. For example, the E-line boats, too, will have deep bathing platforms, all cockpits will be equipped with external refrigerator and cooking plate. We want to standardise our lines in terms of materials and quality and we want to transfer all the Gt line’s solutions to the E line. So, the same wood, the same design, unencumbered spaces below deck and the same quality of woods.
So, there will be no distinction between the sporty and the cruise line, won’t it?
Exactly. There won’t be a line exclusively reserved for sporting activities. And this has resulted into another strategic choice. We’ve seen that our competitors have reduced the amount of standard equipment. We, on the contrary, we have increased it. Our idea is to offer a boat with high-level standard equipment in order to meet all customers’ needs. Everyone buying an Elan boat therefore doesn’t take a boat where he has to spend tens of thousands of euros in equipment. Our starting price might be higher but it offers all you need.
Of course and the first step concerns our dealers. We’ve a highly experienced clientele who exactly knows what we’re talking about. Our message is: ” We give you all you need as well as the opportunity to customize your boat according to your desires. Standard equipment is all-inclusive”.
Are you experiencing a strong repositioning action on the market?
Boot Dusseldorf has represented a break between past and future. We want to reposition Elan boats on the high end of the market through special technical interventions and a strong communication strategy. We don’t aim for price or a fight against our competitors. What is really important for us is to offer a wider range in terms of standard equipment, quality of décor materials and building quality, which is the most precious legacy of our past.
Which will be your next boat?
For the time being, I can only say that it will have all the features I’ve showed you and larger size.