The Superyacht Investor team is in the market all year round researching the industry and speaking to active professionals to help us draft our agendas each year. We would love to hear from you about other potential topics, so please get in touch via email or calling Hannah Burton on +44 1737 910 501.

If you would like to read about last year’s event please click here.

If you would like to work with us on a greater scale, and would like to discuss sponsorship please contact Rebecca Pearson on +44 1737 910 501.

Jim Acher, Broker, Bluewater

Jim Acher started his working life as a stockbroker in London for many years, before leaving finance to become the captain of a 72’ sailing catamaran in the Cayman Islands.

Many seasons later, Jim married and became shore-based, combining proven sales skills with a passion for yachting.

Jim has been a yacht broker for over twelve years and has managed brokerage and charter operations for bluewater in Palma de Mallorca, for the last seven years.

Robert Allen
Attorney, Robert Allen Law

International Business and Superyacht lawyer, Bob Allen, founded Robert Allen Law 25 years ago. He has over 35 years of experience counselling clients on legal matters involving both U.S. and international issues, and has a dynamic practice focusing on the yachting industry.

Bob represents buyers, sellers, manufacturers, distributors brokers and trade associations with respect to all aspects of the yacht business and yacht transactions.

Paul Archer
CEO, Arrow Services Monaco

With 40 years' experience ranging from auditing to finance Director of a Merchant Bank, Paul is specialised in all aspects of Asset Management and saw the potential to bring his financial skills and yachting experience to Superyacht Management, culminating in 1997 with the establishment of Arrow Services Monaco. Arrow are Independent Yacht Consultants providing new build specification and project management, yacht management and specialise in structuring the ownership and registration of yachts. The multilingual team are experiences yacht professionals with most having spent time at sea and have a deep understanding of the industry and its people.

Lewis Baglietto
Team Leader, Parter, Hassans

Lewis Baglietto is a Partner at Hassans and Team Leader of the firm’s Litigation Department. He is also a member of the firm’s Shipping Team.
On 12 June 2014, Lewis was appointed as Queen’s Counsel in Gibraltar.
Lewis read law at King’s College, London and at the Inns of Court School of Law. He was called to the Bar of England and Wales and the Gibraltar Bar in 1986 and joined the firm that year. He became a partner in 1993 and Head of Litigation in 2003.
His practice over the years has been wide-ranging, with a strong emphasis on international commercial disputes, maritime law and administrative law.
He has been involved in many of the leading Gibraltar cases in these areas over the past 25 years, acting for a wide range of local and overseas clients, including private individuals, corporations, Banks, Trustees, accountants, local and overseas state authorities as well as international organisations. Many of his cases are reported in the Gibraltar Law Reports.
He has also appeared as Counsel in cases of European significance in the European Court of Human Rights and the Privy Council, such as Bols v Superior Yacht Services [2006] UKPC 45, a leading case on jurisdiction agreements in a EU context and, more recently, in French v Public Prosecutor of Central Department of Investigation and Prosecution in Lisbon [2013] UKPC 16 concerning the EU Framework Decision on the European Arrest Warrant.
Lewis holds a number of public appointments in Gibraltar, including that of Chief Charity Commissioner and Chairman of the Mental Health Review Tribunal. He also sits as an ad hoc Chairman of the Industrial Tribunal.
He is consistently ranked as a “Leading” or “Band 1” litigator by major international lawyer directories and is commended for his “hands on” approach to cases. In the 2013 Legal 500 section on Gibraltar a source described him as being “every bit as good as his counterparts in London.”

Quentin Bargate
Senior Partner, Bargate Murray, Luxury Asset Law Firm

Quentin Bargate qualified as a solicitor in 1981 and has since spent his entire career in top City of London law firms. He is head of the firm’s Superyachts group and is an expert in yacht contracts and other commercial contract work. Quentin also leads the firm’s Dispute Resolution practice.

Quentin was a partner for over 14 years in Simmons & Simmons, one of London’s premier law firms. He was head of the firm’s International Trade and Shipping Group and a member of the Litigation Department and Arbitration Groups. At Simmons & Simmons, Quentin developed his specialised skills in superyacht/megayacht contracts and disputes as well as commercial shipping and trade.

In 2004, Quentin fulfilled a lifetime ambition when he set up his own law firm, Quentin Bargate & Co. (renamed Bargate Murray in 2006).

In Chambers and Partners High Net Worth guide 2016, Quentin is praised as someone who “always provides excellent advice, and is also very commercially oriented” as well as being “a pleasure to work with”. Chambers recognises that “Quentin is known for acting for some very prominent UHNW yacht owners” adding that “certain HNW clients want to use him exclusively”.
Quentin is an advocate for alternative dispute resolution (ADR), but he also deals with cases in court when required. He occasionally sits as an arbitrator.
Quentin is a member of the Maritime Authority of the Cayman Islands yacht committee. He holds a Master’s degree in Marine law, is a member of the LMAA, a Member of the Nautical Institute, a member of the IOD, a member of the Royal Thames Yacht Club, and a Freeman of the City of London.

His other interests include photography, music and his family.

Olivier Blanchet BNP Paribas Superyacht Investor LondonOlivier Blanchet
Head of Jet & Yacht Finance, BNP Paribas

A graduate of Paris-Dauphine University, Olivier joined BNP Paribas in 1993, where he developed skills in structuring, credit risk and project management acquired in Corporate Banking, with a focus on Asset Finance. His specialties include deals origination, structuring, risk management, reengineering and IT projects.

In 2002, he discovered that “God must have been a ship owner or a yacht owner because he placed raw materials and paradises far from where they were needed and covered 2/3 of the earth with water”. He then became a Maritime Banker and developed a sound international business relationships portfolio focused on commercial vessels and ship owners and in 2006, launched a dedicated offer for yacht financing in 2006. As Head of Yacht and Shipping Finance Services at BNP Paribas, Olivier works in close cooperation with the Wealth Management Department, and provides specialist guidance for his yacht financing team, particularly in marketing, structuring, loan documentation and compliance due diligence.

In June 2016, we decided to put on the same credit structuring platform the jet and yacht finance teams in order to develop new client experiences and create some synergies for their benefits. From that date, i run this platform where the share of experiences already had positive effects.

Craig Barnett
Sales & Marketing Manager, Triton Submarines (EMEA)

Working in yachting media for the last two decades, Craig’s role in journalism and editorial content generation has led him from his native Wales, through extended stints living in the Middle East and Florida, to joining the Triton team in Barcelona.

Just one dive in a Triton submersible off the Bahamas was all it took to convince him that the team and product are where his passion and professional future lies.

From personal watercraft through to megayachts, and as the founding Editor in Chief of INVICTUS Magazine, Craig has acquired a wide-aspect view of the leisure marine sector, from concept and design, through construction, operation, the yachting lifestyle and interaction with yacht owners, equipping him to contribute to the development of Triton’s communication, global visibility and the generation of sales.

Karolina Blasiak
Art Advisor, Rosemont Yacht Services & Management

Mrs. Karolina Blasiak, has international experience of more than 10 years in the art field, having worked in several European countries and the United States. Ms. Blasiak is of Polish descent, speaks her mother tongue, speaks fluently and works in English, German, French and Russian. She is assist in the global art advisory activities for individual and corporate clients of Rosemont International by Rosemont's legal, accounting and financial teams, who have successfully developed these services for several years, and with whom she has created the art advisory department.

Karolina obtained a Master in Arts History at the European University Viadrina, Frankfurt, an MA in Linguistics at the Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan, Poland and completed her business qualifications at the Montpellier Business School, France where she obtained an MBA in brand marketing. She joined Rosemont International after working for modern and contemporary Paris and New York art galleries where she assisted art collectors, museums and art foundations as well as private banks and corporations in this extremely personal domain.

Andy Blundell
Director of Aviation & Marine, Close Brothers

With 30 years’ experience in Asset Finance and banking, Andy has an in-depth knowledge of aviation and marine financing solutions for both corporate and personal clients. Andy’s high standards ensure clients of Close Brothers Aviation and Marine consistently receive the best quality service available.

Paul Bournas
Managing Director, CCS Yacht Coating Services

Paul Bournas has over two decades of experience in the coatings & chemicals industry after successful stints in commercial and general management roles at Den Braven Sealants, EcoTherm and Van Wijhe. His experience also includes stints as Managing Director for Sigma Coatings in Poland, Hong Kong and London.

He is no stranger to the yachting world either having sailed at the highest competitive level for many years.

Simon Brealey
Principal Mechanical Engineer, Lateral Naval Architects

Profile coming soon

Richard Bridge
Nautical Manager, EYOS Expeditions

Richard joined the British Merchant Navy after leaving school at 17, working on a variety of cargo ships as a cadet and junior officer before taking a position as navigator on a sail training ship.

Progressing to passenger ships in 1991, he attained his Class 1 Master Mariner’s certificate in 1993, and became Senior First Officer on Cunard’s Queen Elizabeth 2.
Combining his experience of sailing and passenger ships he joined Windstar Cruises in 1997, and gained his first command at the age of 35 on the company’s MSY Wind Song.

Five years later, as superyachts increased in size and required unlimited tonnage certification, Richard secured his first position on a superyacht when taking command of the 126m MY Octopus for the final stages of the build. He went on to command some of the largest and most elite superyachts launched over the past 15 years, including the 115m Pelorus, the 162m Eclipse, the 96m Vava II, and the 138m Rising Sun).

He’s worked with helicopters, private jets and submersibles, as well as organized and overseen operations at major events with VIP guests, all while managing and motivating up to 115 crewmembers.
During his time on superyachts he has planned expeditions and explored the Indian Ocean, Indonesia, Australasia, South Pacific, Alaska, Patagonia and Antarctica, as well as the more usual yachting destinations in the Mediterranean and Caribbean.

In 2004 he coordinated and executed the project to find and film the wreck of a WWII aircraft carrier at a depth of 1000m in the Mediterranean Sea, culminating in a 2-part BBC documentary.
Captain Bridge will assist Captains on all manners of technical planning for their expeditions, from preparing the yacht and crew for the Polar Code to high level passage planning and worldwide deployment consulting.

Michel Buffat
Head Aviation & Yacht Finance, Credit Suisse

Michel Buffat joined Credit Suisse in 2001 after having spent eight years at a blue chip Swiss engineering firm. Since joining the bank Michel has held various asset finance positions and is currently acting Head of Aviation and Yacht Finance at Credit Suisse. Since 2005 he is an active member of the wider superyacht community, representing Credit Suisse in its partnership with the Yacht Club de Monaco and regularly participating in SYI conferences and other industry events.

Additionally Michel is chairing the Financier’s Subcommittee of the Advisory Committee to the European Business Aviation Association (EBAA AMAC)

Michel holds an MBA from the University of Rochester as well as a Masters in mechanical engineering from Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) in Zurich.

Vasco Buonpensiere Cantiere delle Marche Superyacht InvestorVasco Buonpensiere
Co-Founder, Cantiere delle Marche

A keen sailor for all of his life, Vasco Buonpensiere has always been yachting fan who left his career as a lawyer to follow his passion. His first job in the working industry was at Waterman Exclusive Yacht Services in St. Tropez, where he worked as a broker and european sales agent for Royal Denship.

The brokerage arena wasn’t fulfilling Vasco’s needs and ambitions, therefore, as soon as a shipyard called him to become sales manager, he went back to Italy: his fisrst job in a shipyard was in the sales office at CRN. After a few monts, he became Sales and Marketing Director of both CRN and Custom Line.

He left CRN in 2010 as Brand Manager, after having sold 58 vessels from 30 to 80 mt. In 2010 he co-founded Cantiere delle Marche where he is Member of the Board as Sales and Marketing Director. In 5 years, CdM has become absolute market leader, having sold an average of one boat ever 3 months and representing 60% of its relevant niche.

He has also been member of the board at the International Superyacht Society and has been key speaker in many of conferences around the world.

Anthony Buneta
Head of Mega-Yacht and Jet Financing, Société Générale Private Banking

Having completed his masters finance degree in France and Australia, Anthony Buneta has joined Societe Generale Private Banking (Monaco) in early 2012. His career began within the Wealth Management branch of the bank by joining the Mega-Yacht financing team of the Monaco entity.

Developing his expertise in such specialized assets financing throughout the years, he has jointly and successfully set up the Business Jet financing offer of Societe Generale Private Banking (Monaco) in 2015.

Taking advantage of the strengths of this first rank banking group, Anthony focus on the business development of the Monaco entity. He deals on a day-to-day basis with worldwide new and existing clients and relies on a panel of expertise including luxury assets finance (Business Jet, Mega-Yacht and Real Estate), financial asset management or wealth planning with a strong commitment to these Ultra High Net Worth Individuals.

Dominic Byrne
Head of Sales - Europe, Gulf Craft

Profile coming soon

Elinor Dautlich
Partner, HFW

Elinor is a transactional lawyer acting for shipowners, operators, shipyards and designers across the shipping, LNG and offshore sectors.

Elinor advises on all types of commercial shipping contracts including second-hand sale and purchase, shipbuilding contracts, EPC and EPCI contracts, ship recycling, ship registration, charterparties, pooling agreements, management agreements, seismic-related contracts, shares sale and purchase and joint venture agreements as well as on ship and aviation finance, leasing, seller's credits and other forms of capital raising. She also advises on contracts for the design, construction, purchase and operation of yachts and business jets.

Elinor is part of the firm's LNG group, which has been responsible for drafting some of the first long-term LNG vessel charters and has over the years built up extensive experience of LNG time charters and related agreements, including joint venture arrangements, for some of the major LNG projects around the world. The group deals with all modern LNG time voyage and other specific charters, gas supply / offtake and LNG sale and purchase agreements, financing agreements, insurance issues, FLNG and the construction and operation of LNG ports and terminals.

Elinor has been advising on piracy related contracts since 2009, including contracts for the provision of private security services and she sits on BIMCO's drafting sub-committee for GUARDCON.

Elinor lectures on commercial shipping matters, and in particular on shipbuilding and offshore construction topics, security in shipping and yachting, LNG charter issues and related insurance issues.

Elinor is recommended by Legal 500 UK 2012. She sits on the board of advisors to the Human Rights at Sea (HRAS) international maritime initiative and is a vice chair of the International Bar Association's Maritime and Land Transport Law Committee.

Elinor is qualified in England and Wales.

Shelley Dowie
Yacht Compliance Manager & DPA, Rosemont Yacht Services & Management

Shelley joined Rosemont Yacht Management in 2015 to develop and implement the Company’s Safety Management System. Now Head of Yacht Compliance and the Company’s DPA & CSO, Shelley heads the Yacht Management team and oversees the day-to-day operation of the Rosemont fleet.

Previous to coming ashore Shelley served 10 years at sea, sailing in excess of 100,000 miles worldwide as Captain & Chief Officer. This experience led her to becoming a safety and security specialist, developing safety management systems for several yachts and yacht management companies ashore.

Shelley and the Rosemont team are well recognised in the industry for their safety and regulatory expertise and provide advice to several leading industry organisations and companies. The team’s approach to management is to provide a personalised and trusted service.

Emmanuel Dupuy
Sales Director, Aero Asset Inc.

Emmanuel heads the Avpro helicopter division and is Avpro’s Leonardo-Finmeccanica market specialist. Emmanuel began his aircraft sales career over a decade ago; founding Heli Asset in 2011 and joining forces with Avpro in 2013 thus creating the world’s leading independent helicopter sales and acquisition company. Emmanuel is fluent in both English and French.

George Eddings
Partner, HFW

George Eddings advises on all aspects of maritime and offshore energy law including Charterparties, Bills of Lading and Construction contracts.
George is part of HFW's Emergency Response Team with particular experience in the contractual aspects of General Average and issues arising from groundings, collisions, salvage and the carriage of dangerous goods by sea.
George has headed teams arbitrating many issues arising from ship and drilling rig construction disputes; and has drafted multimodal Bills of Lading with some of the world's leading container companies.
George has strong industry connections, in particular in South Korea, Japan, Scandinavia and Latin America.

George is qualified in England and Wales.

Jamie Edmiston
CEO, Edmiston

Profile coming soon

Ann Fenech
Managing Partner, Fenech & Fenech Associates

Ann Fenech is the Managing Partner of Fenech & Fenech Advocates. Before joining the firm, she worked with law firms in London and in New Orleans. She has dealt exclusively with ship related issues for the past 32 years. She lectures at the University of Malta and the International Maritime Law Institute and is a regular guest speaker at overseas maritime fora. She is the President of the Malta Maritime Law Association.

In 2012, 2014 and 2015 she was awarded Best in Shipping Law at the European Women in Business Law Awards held in London. She is regularly ranked in publications such as Chambers Europe, Legal 500 and Who’s Who; Shipping. In 2013 she was appointed Honorary Patron of the Malta Law Academy. In 2014 she was the first Maltese to be elected to the Executive Council of the Comité Maritime International. In 2015 she was appointed on the Malta Maritime Forum Board of Directors and in 2016 she was also appointed to represent the Malta Maritime Law Association on the board of the Malta Marittima Agency.

She is currently the Chair of the CMI International Working Group on Ship Finance Security Practices and a member on the CMI International Working Group on Illegal Arrest. In October this year she was awarded the Honorary Membership of the Croatian Maritime Law Association. In November 2018 she was elected as Vice President of the Comité Maritime International.

Iain Flockhart
Saor Alba Holdings Ltd

Iain is a highly experienced yacht Captain with over 250,000 mn in the role of professional Captain since 1996. Grew up on sailing vessels but chooses to work on M/Ys now. Good reputation for crew loyalty and retention, through solid management, mentoring and leadership. Lots of experience of working in very challenging roles. Wide and varied skillset with solid management and admin. skills.

Iain enjoys simple pleasures such as using his 7m RIB to go exploring and wild camping in his native Scotland.

Vassilis Fotilas,
Sales Broker, Fraser

Vassilis has been with Fraser since 2007. Predominantly working as a sales broker Vassilis also served as Commercial Director for two years, overseeing the sales and charter operations for Fraser Yachts in Europe, Asia and Oceania before resuming his duties as a sales broker.

Born in Athens, Greece, Vassilis attended Gordonstoun boarding school in Scotland and subsequently read Sports Science at Stirling University obtaining a BSc Honours Degree. Following the completion of his military duties in the Hellenic Navy, Vassilis returned to the UK to obtain an MSc in Sports and Leisure Management from Loughborough University.

Having worked in yacht sales in Monaco and Greece, Vassilis understands the dynamics of some the world’s most important markets while developing an extensive and international network. Overseeing the sales and charter departments of Fraser across three continents gave Vassilis unparalleled insight of the global yacht market.

Kurt Fraser
Commercial Director, West Nautical

Originally from Vancouver Canada, Kurt began his career as director of one of Western Canada’s largest creative agencies, where he developed a specialty in marketing luxury real estate. As the Senior Director of Marketing for Intrawest and International Sales Director for Hamptons International, he was responsible for launching several of the most prestigious branded resort real estate projects of their time, including the western Mediterranean’s premier superyacht marina and village, Porto Montenegro.

Kurt went on to spend eight years with Camper & Nicholsons, first as the Sales and Marketing Director of the superyacht marina division and then Director of Marketing of superyacht brokerage, Camper & Nicholsons International, where he was responsible for some of the superyacht sector’s most compelling sales and marketing campaigns. As Commercial Director with West Nautical, Kurt has set the company’s strategic direction and unique approach to providing professional services to superyacht owners as an alternative to traditional yacht brokerage.

With his multi-sector background and global perspective, Kurt has a very unique understanding of global luxury markets and the needs and expectations of today’s superyacht clientele.

Nicholas Gale
Senior surveyor, Bermuda Ship Registry

A Chartered Naval Architect, Nick Gale joined the Bermuda Shipping and Maritime Authority in 2015 to undertake Flag State duties relating to statutory and legislative policy, client management and surveys and audits on board the yachts, cargo ships and passenger ships registered in Bermuda. Prior to joining the Bermuda Shipping and Maritime Authority Nick worked as a passenger ship superintendent at Carnival UK and as a surveyor for Lloyd’s Register.
Bermuda has extensive experience working with passenger ships, including Safe-Return-to-Port compliant and novel design new-builds. With this expertise Bermuda is particularly well placed to assist in the construction and management of large yachts and passenger yachts.
As a member of the Red Ensign Group listed on the Paris MOU’s White List, Bermuda is a quality Flag with a pragmatic and sensible approach to ensuring compliance across its fleet.

Anthony Galea
Managing Director, Vistra Marine & Aviation

Anthony joined Vistra Group to set up the Marine & Aviation practice in December 2015, after over 12 years of experience building and leading a similar practice in Malta. The office focuses on the superyacht and business aviation sectors, as well as the general aviation and shipping industries.

Anthony began his career as a trainee with Hugh Peralta & Associates in 2001, and went on to continue his training with the newly formed DF Advocates in 2003. Anthony worked mainly in the civil and corporate department, also involving himself in the litigation practice.

Anthony set-up the Transport law Department within DF Advocates and was later appointed as the partner responsible for said practice. Anthony was also appointed as Managing Director of the firm's sister company DF Marine, a company specialising in providing services to superyacht owners.

Anthony holds a LL.D from the University of Malta awarded in 2003 and was admitted to the Bar of Malta in 2004.

His native language is Maltese and English, and speaks fluent Italian.

Lizzie Gray
Associate, HFW

Lizzie joined HFW in 2010 and specialises in employment law and insurance and reinsurance.
She advises on all aspects of employment law both contentious and non contentious and for employers and employees in a variety of sectors. She has experience of advising on complex and confidential employment issues including grievances, team moves, restrictive covenants, redundancy, drafting employment contracts and procedures and advising clients in discrimination and whistleblowing claims in the Employment Tribunal.
She also advises on professional negligence claims, brokers' E&O claims, property damage, business interruption, cyber, marine, mining and onshore and offshore energy.
Lizzie is regularly involved in large complex disputes and has contentious experience across a range of industries at arbitration and in the Commercial and Chancery divisions of the High Court.

Lizzie is qualified in England and Wales.

Stephen Hills
Commercial Director, Pendennis

Stephen has been key to the successful expansion of Pendennis’ business into the very large yacht sector epitomized most recently by the award-winning refit of the 86m Aquila. In the last 30 years Pendennis has completed 30 custom new builds and over 250 superyacht refits/restorations including “7 over 70m” since they expanded their facilities in 2015.

Stephen is a Chartered Naval Architect (Masters Degree from University of Southampton) and member of the SYUK committee. Prior to taking his leadership position at Pendennis Stephen worked for nearly 20 years at Devonport Royal Dockyard where he established the Devonport Yachts brand and amongst the many projects he was responsible for included the UK’s largest new build yachts, MY Sarafsa and MY VaVa II as well as the Iconic Global Challenge fleet of 67 and 72ft sailing yachts.

A man of the sea through and through – when not at the ‘docks’ Stephen is most likely found messing about in a boat and enjoys shorthanded offshore racing, Falmouth working boat racing and family cruising holidays.

Kalliopi Karaiskaki
Partner, HFW

Kal is a transactional lawyer with diverse experience in international contracts and focus on asset finance, corporate and oil & gas. She advises clients on a wide range of areas, including joint ventures, corporate governance, investment funds, share acquisitions, corporate structures, financings, ship sale and purchase, procurement contracts and agreements related to oil & gas upstream lifecycle.
She has gained in-house experience and an understanding of the Middle East market via secondments in Qatar Gas Transport Company (Nakilat) and Maersk Oil Qatar.
Kal is English and Greek qualified and has worked in London, Athens and Doha.

Alex Kemp
Partner, HFW

Alex specialises in marine insurance and crisis response and has advised both yacht owners and insurers on a variety of insurance and affecting large yachts including fires, groundings, missing vessels, damage sustained whilst being transported, structural defects, main engine damage and damage to gel coatings. He has advised on yacht casualties including those requiring salvage assistance. Alex has also undertaken a secondment at a leading London marine insurer.

Kathy Kennedy
Chief Operating Officer, AvYachts

Kathy is the COO of AvYachts a shared ownership management company based in the United States. AvYachts offers for sale 10% increments of 34M, 40M and 50M Westport Yachts.

A veteran of the superyacht industry, Kathy gained a reputation for her marketing prowess when she introduced the world to the 281-foot motor yacht Cakewalk as the Director of Marketing for megayacht builder Derecktor Shipyards. She has since helped a variety of yachting companies establish their marketing and sales strategies, including launching a successful yacht membership club.

Tilman Kriesel
Art Advisor, TKA Art Advisors

Tilman Kriesel is an independent art advisor and interdisciplinary partner in the global art scene. Tilman Kriesel’s expertise is in no small part thanks to his family connection to the prestigious Sprengel Museum Hannover. As a qualified architect, Tilman Kriesel offers extensive project experience, including the comprehensive discipline of art management on superyachts. Customers value his end-to-end service and personalised guidance through the art world.

Frederic Lemos
Head of Airbus Corporate Helicopters

Appointed in 2017, Frederic Lemos is Head of Airbus Corporate Helicopters, a role that sees him lead the company's offering to the Private and Business aviation market.

Frederic has a 15 years’ experience in the helicopter industry having served in various leadership positions in Latin America and Europe for Airbus Helicopters.

Frederic is fluent in English, Spanish, Portuguese and French.

Frederic holds a Master’s degree in International Business Development Management from NEOMA Business School, France.

John Leonida
Partner, Clyde & Co.

John specialises in international marine transactional work and is a prominent member of the firm's yacht group. His practice ranges from advising operators in the oil support industry to owners and builders of some of the world's most luxurious superyachts.

He also advises on regulatory issues relating to the ownership of ships and has extensive experience in negotiating shipbuilding and ship financing documents. His clients are either shipping entrepreneurs or, in the case of John's superyacht work, high net-worth individuals, superyacht builders, designers and banks.

John has been a partner since May 2003. He is a former development economist with the Foreign Office's overseas development administration and has an economics degree from the University of Sussex and a masters in political economics from Middlesex University. He took his LLB at the University of Westminster. John is now also doctoral researcher on the cultural and social history of yachts and superyacht 1918 to 2018 at Greenwich University.

John is a regular contributor to superyacht symposia on issues as diverse as tax, the legal pitfalls surrounding superyacht design as well as superyacht finance. He also writes for several publications, including Boat International and The Superyacht Report.

Ben Lind
Senior Yacht Underwriter, AIG

Building on 13 years as a marine insurance broker at Lloyd's of London with a specialism in Superyacht Insurance, Ben moved to AIG's Private Client Group in August 2012 as the Senior Yacht Underwriter for the Europe & Middle East region. Based out of AIG's London office, Ben underwrites an international portfolio of Superyacht insurance business, ranging from entry level yachts to the very largest Superyachts afloat, as part of a team of Yacht insurance professionals around the world serving some 100,000+ yacht owners including some 200+ of the largest Superyachts.

In addition to providing Owner’s with protection and peace of mind for their treasured Superyachts, Ben has endeavored to support the Superyacht Insurance industry through his participation as an Executive Committee member of the Superyacht Claims Adjusters Association, helping to provide a professional body for this specialist niche of the insurance industry.

William MacLachlan
Senior Associate, HFW

William advises a wide variety of companies and financial institutions on a range of transactional shipping matters in both the commercial shipping and yachting industries. He has particular expertise in ship sale and purchase, shipbuilding and ship repair contracts and spent some eight months seconded to a leading European shipbuilder. William also has considerable experience of advising those operating in complex security environments on, amongst other things, contractual and licensing issues. William acts for a number of private security companies and logistic providers, both on shore and offshore. William is actively involved in the Security in Complex Environments Group (SCEG).

William is qualified in England and Wales.

Pandora Mather-Lees
Director, Pandora Art Services

A founding member of the Art Due Diligence Group, Pandora’s career involves over 20 years in management, strategy and sales at board level in the arts. Her work in the cultural sector also involved directing government funded projects.
Having worked in fine art and interior design logistics witnessing the pitfalls of transporting valuable objects, she launched The Practical Care of On-board Art Collections, a course for on the appreciation, management and handling of fine art on superyachts for captains, crew and yacht management.

Pandora is a fellow of the RSA and a Liveryman in the Worshipful Company of Arts Scholars.

Pandora initiated the Protection of Art At Sea Symposium with Helen Robertson of the National Maritime Museum

Peter Mellett
Managing Director, BankServe

Peter Mellett is Managing Director, BankServe Insurance Services and has been involved in marine insurance as a broker for 39 years, with experience in all types of claims work. He is a Fellow of the Chartered Insurance Institute, has lectured on marine underwriting and for three years was the senior marine claims examiner for the Chartered Insurance Institute.

Since 1996 Peter has specialised in acting for ship finance institutions with particular emphasis on arranging contingent insurance protection for Mortgagees and advising on insurance issues during the workout process. Peter specialises in assisting with disputed claims under owners’ policies and has been involved in over 80 Mortgagees Interest Insurance claims during that time, having recently collected the largest MII claim that has been made.

Paul Miller
Director of Underwriting, Hiscox

Paul is currently Director of Underwriting at Hiscox MGA Ltd one of the largest Yacht and Marine Leisure Underwriting Agencies in the London & European Markets.

Paul currently manages a team of eight people underwriting a portfolio of Yacht & associated products,, Marinas, Builders Risks and Cargo Business with a GWP of just under £20,000,000

He has worked in the Lloyd’s market since 1977 and has been a leading underwriter within the yacht market since 1985.
Paul has specialised in the Yacht and Marine Trade/Leisure Industry over the last 25 years and has been both Chairman and Deputy Chairman of the Yacht Advisory Committee and Vice Commodore of Lloyd’s Yacht Club.

Paul previously sat on The Joint Hull Committee for 8 years and also Chaired the International Union of Marine Insurers Inland, Fishing vessel and Yachts (IFY) Committee of which he is still a member.
He has spoken at a number of International Conferences including IUMI, Project 2002, Seas 2004, the Global Superyacht Forum, The World Marina Conference and have Chaired the Future of Superyachts Conference for a number of years.

Derek Munro
Director, Divergent Yachting

Derek Munro is the Director of Divergent Yachts and has been in the professional Superyacht industry since 1988, starting out as a Captain and Engineer. Derek has been fortunate to have sailed and commanded sailing and motor vessels from 18m to 50m in length throughout the Mediterranean, Atlantic, Caribbean, Red Sea, Pacific and Asia. Currently Derek is a Owners Representative on new build yachts in Europe and recently delivered the largest sailing yacht in the world Black Pearl.
In 2018 Derek was awarded the ISS Business Person of the year Award for his work setting up and Chairing Superyacht Charities ( which has successfully grown year on year. This is a voluntary position which runs alongside all other work.

Rob Myers
Senior Director, Maritime Market Delivery, Inmarsat

Profile coming soon

Nikoo Ordodary
General Manager, Ahoy Club

Experienced General Manager with a demonstrated history of working in both non-profit and private business sectors. Skilled in Negotiation, Business Planning, Analytical Skills, Sales, and Management. Strong strategic business planner and a sales professional with a Master’s Degree focused in LLM Public International Law from City University London.

Rob Papworth
Operations Director, MB92 La Ciotat

An English naval architect graduate from Southampton University, Rob moved into the field of high-tech composite sailing yacht construction
after several years working on board racing and cruising sailing
yachts around the world. 
After various management roles in building high-end carbon cruising,
Volvo Ocean Race and America’s Cup yachts, he moved to La Ciotat
in France to join Compositeworks in 2001.

Having occupied a number of management positions within Compositeworks, Rob now oversees all day-to-day operations of the yard now part of MB92 Group.
Since 2010 he has also been the Chairman of the ICOMIA Superyacht Refit Group.  He is married with two children and lives in Bandol in the South of France.

Adrien Pasqualon
Yachting Business Development Manager, Milano Teleport

Adrien joined Orbis Yacht in early 2018 as Business Development Director, with the mission to grow the yachting segment into the group portfolio, through direct sales to yachts and the development of their network of partners. Orbis Yacht is the Yachting division of Milano Teleport, a satellite communication operator specialized in VSAT and 4G airtime services for the marine sector.

He entered in the yachting industry in 2008 and deals with yacht communications since 2011, working in sales and marketing for an airtime provider for yachts in the French Riviera.

Prior to his yachting life, he worked in sales and marketing for a High-Tech Company. He obtained a Master’s degree in International Business from Skema Business School in France and studied in Netherlands and Canada.

Rosemary Pavlatou
Director, A1 Yachting

Profile coming soon

Charlotte Pedersen
CEO, Luxaviation Helicopters

Charlotte Pedersen is a Danish national with more than 25 years of experience in aviation. She was the first female to enter the prestigious military pilot program in the Danish Air Force in 1989 when the Armed Forces accepted female applicants to the program for the first time. Charlotte was trained as a military Search and Rescue pilot on the S-61 helicopter. She continued her career attending the Officers Academy and occupying several higher staff positions,- all in the area of safety and survival training, amongst others, being responsible for Helicopter Safety Equipment and Training, Instructor in the Water Survival Programme for military flight crews and HUET Underwater Instructor as well as Instructor for Medical Personnel Operational Training (Open Water hoist Training).

After her military services, Charlotte joined the Civil Aviation Authorities (CAA) in Luxembourg as a Flight Operations Inspector for both Helicopters and Fixed Wing. During this period, she also participated on a volunteer basis for the European Aviation Safety Agency in working groups focusing on Helicopter Safety (EHSIT) and Human Factors (EHFAG).

Charlotte joined Luxaviation in 2012 and was nominated Chief Operating Officer of the Luxaviation Group in 2014.

In 2016 Charlotte Pedersen was promoted to CEO of Luxaviation Helicopters which is part of the Luxaviation Group.

Charlotte holds a Master of Business Administration (MBA) in Finance and Strategic Management.

Panos Pourgourides
Partner, Hill Dickinson

Panos is a partner in the market-leading yacht team at Hill Dickinson LLP. Originally engaged in both contentious and non-contentious work in the commercial shipping sector for a number of years after qualifying in 1996, he has since gone on to focus almost exclusively on yacht work for the majority of his career.

He has extensive experience acting for yacht owners and almost all of the major banks involved in the provision of finance for new build projects and second-hand yachts and is an acknowledged leader in this field. He also routinely advises on the negotiation of construction agreements, sale and purchase work, design and project management contracts and other yacht, ship and private aircraft related commercial and regulatory issues.

Panos also sits on the committee of Superyacht UK and is a co-editor of the shipping chapter of Sweet & Maxwell’s “Practical Lending and Security Precedents.”

He is a fluent Greek speaker and also holds a practising certificate in Hong Kong.

Henning Price
General Manager, YachtQuarters

Henning Price is in charge of the development and implementation of a new shared yacht ownership program with Princess Motor Yacht Sales in Mallorca, YachtQuarters.

Before joining Princess Mallorca, Henning Price was the CEO of Princess Yacht Mexico for 5 years, where he operated a similar shared ownership program.

Henning Price holds degrees in marine engineering and economics and has an extensive international experience.

Helen Robertson
Senior Organic & Preventive Conservator, Royal Museums Greenwich

During a career in the superyacht industry encounters with on board art inspired Helen Robertson to retrain in organic and preventive conservation. Recognizing a need to advocate best care practices, Helen focused her Masters research on the benefit of adopting collections care management for working marine interiors.

A return to the yachting world was side tracked by an opportunity to work in ship model conservation, at the National Maritime Museum. On realising a passion to combine traditional hand skills, creativity, material and scientific research; she never left. This environment has allowed Helen to hone her conservation skills; however, she remains a fervent supporter in developing training initiatives and promoting protection of art at sea.

Helen’s professional experience offers an insight into how solutions can be found to protect the cultural and financial integrity of on board art.

David Seal
Broker, Northrop & Johnson

With a history in yachting that spans more than two decades, Northrop & Johnson Sales Broker David Seal grew from developing English-language operation manuals for Ferretti yachts in 1994 to becoming sales manager of the CRN shipyard when Ferretti Group purchased it in 2001. He then moved on to yacht brokerage in 2006, where he quickly closed the sale of one of the world's largest new build yachts of the time (280 feet).

David was one of the first yacht brokers to recognize and act upon the potential of digital marketing. In 2012, he developed his first unique yacht presentation video, distributed through a dedicated YouTube channel called "Yachts For Sale." He is now considered one of the leading experts in video marketing in the yachting industry; his productions have been watched by millions of people in over two hundred different countries.

David’s impressive sales record and innovative marketing techniques make him a natural choice for discerning clients.

Sitpah Selvaratnam
Consultant, Tommy Thomas Advocates & Solicitors

Advocate & Solicitor of the High Court of Malaya, Barrister-at-Law, Lincoln’s Inn; International Arbitrator. Qualified in 1988 with a First Class Honours degree in law from the University of Wales, Cardiff, and in 1991 with a LLM from the University of Cambridge. Conferred a Diploma in International Commercial Arbitration by the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators in 2008, upon completion of study at Keble College Oxford.

Practicing law in Malaysia since 1991, focused on corporate insolvency, commercial and shipping litigation and disputes. Represents diverse Malaysian and foreign corporations and commercial interests; including shipowners, commodity traders, port operators, Protection and Indemnity Clubs, insurers, financial institutions, Malaysia’s national asset management corporation, and securities commission.

Heading the legal team in the arrest of, recovery and judicial sale of the superyacht Equanimity. Involved in over 100 shipping In Rem and In Personam actions, including arrest of ships, charterparty, cargo, international trade, documentary credit, marine insurance, and bunkering disputes; and collision, shipyard and port claims. Featured in successive editions of The Asia Pacific Legal 500 since 2005. Singled out by Shipping & Transport International, published in London in 2008, as a significant maritime personality.

President of the International Malaysian Society of Maritime Law (IMSML). Chair of the Shipping and Admiralty Law Committee of the Malaysian Bar Council. Chair of the Maritime Committee of the InterPacific Bar Association (IPBA [2015-2017]). Co-Chair of the International Arbitration Committee of the International Association of Defense Counsel (IADC). Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators (CIArb) and the Malaysian Institute of Arbitrators (MIArb). Member of Panel of Arbitrators of Asian International Arbitration Centre (AIAC) (formerly known as KLRCA), Singapore International Arbitration Centre (SIAC), Singapore Chambers of Maritime Arbitration (SCMA), Hong Kong International Arbitration Centre (HKIAC), The London Court of International Arbitration (LCIA), Emirates Maritime Arbitration Centre (EMAC), Supporting member of the London Maritime Arbitrators Association (LMAA). Regularly appointed as Arbitrator in international, regional and domestic references on commercial, international trade and shipping disputes.

Jim Simpson
Managing Director, Aviation/Marine Finance, First Republic Bank

Jim joined First Republic Bank in March 2006 in his current position as Managing Director of Aviation & Marine Finance. Since joining, Jim has built a team that has originated, closed, and funded over half a ($US) billion in aviation and marine secured transactions for First Republic Bank’s high net worth clients. Because of the focus on understanding the client’s business and alternative asset categories, Jim and his team customize the transactions that suit their clients’ specific needs.

Prior to joining First Republic Bank, he was a regional manager for Bank of America Equipment Finance and Leasing where he managed team of 14 professionals and support staff located throughout the Western United States. While at Bank of America, he worked on a variety of aviation finance transactions for its commercial airline and corporate clients. Jim is a pilot who began flying aircraft in high school. He graduated from Boston University where he earned his Bachelor of Science in Finance.

Michael Stusch
Founder, Chairman & CEO & Founder, H2 Industries Group

Michael is founder and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Germany-based H2-Industries Group with its subsidiary H2-Maritime. H2-Industries Group is currently building the first zero emission all-electric LOHC yacht worldwide, an explorer stile 100 feet (30.5m) flybridge superyacht at NOBISKRUG. Also H2-Industries developed the worldwide first energy autonomous mega yacht, with an LOA of 71m.

With his technical and maritime background and his experience as a captain for 30 years, Michael is responsible for the idea and naval architecture of this project.
With this new LOHC energy storage technology Michael wants to move the entire shipping industry into the emission-free ages, with all-electric ships in any sizes. H2-Industries is also building all-electric container ships based on the LOHC technology for customers. More zero-emission LOHC ships are already in the order books.

Prior to founding H2-Industries, he built up the Internet Advertising Industry from the mid 90s and sold his company ADTECH in 2007 to AOL/Time Warner.

Michael has graduated from the University of Frankfurt and holds his Diploma as a Mechanical/Precision Engineer. He also studied Business and Engineering at the TH Darmstadt.

Alexandra Tatagia
Managing Partner, PPT Legal

Aleka is one of the managing partners of the firm and based in the Piraeus office. Aleka has a wide ranging transactional practice specialising in investment and banking, shipping and transport and company law. She acts for clients ranging from banks and financial institutions to ship-owners, ships’ operators and managers, brokers, foreign law firms’ clients as well as non-shipping clients. Aleka has extensive experience in ship finance, sale and purchase of ships, shipbuilding contracts, yachting, joint ventures, shareholders’ disputes and acquisition of companies.

Aleka has been with the firm since 1986, after gaining valuable experience training and working at a well known shipping law firm in Piraeus, whilst, for a period of four years, she was based in London representing Greek and foreign clients of the firm.

Aleka has been a member of the Athens Bar since 1984. She obtained her law degree from the Law School of the University of Athens and a master’s degree (LL.M.) from University College, London. Aleka is fluent in Greek, English and also speaks French.

Mike Taylor-West
Director Global Markets, La Playa

Mike is a Maritime Business & Marine Law alumnus of the Institute of Marine Studies, University of Plymouth. He is also a graduate of Britannia Royal Naval College, and a Chartered Insurance Broker. Mike brings over 20 years of international private client insurance experience, passion and enthusiasm to La Playa. Mike is also a keen windsurfer and skier.

Sam Tucker
Head of Superyachts, VesselsValue

Sam Tucker joined VesselsValue in January 2017 to oversee the development of their Superyacht product. Since then, Sam has been working closely with the Analyst, Research and Development teams of 100+ people to launch VV Superyachts.

Sam works with his industry contacts to ensure VV’s offering is kept up to date and relevant for the current market needs.

Prior to joining VesselsValue as a market analyst, Sam attended Southampton University to read Ship Science before spending 5 years working as crew on large sailing yachts.

Jaap van der Velde
Product Manager SeaXplorer, Damen

A naval architect and yacht designer, Jaap drove the development of Damen’s SeaXplorer range of luxury
expedition yachts until the launch at the Monaco Yacht Show in 2015.
He now leads the SeaXplorer design team responsible for the first two SeaXplorers in build, new client design
and proposal projects, as well as developing the range’s five designs from 55 to 100 metres.
Jaap joined Damen 20 years ago after completing his studies at the Delft University of Technology. Before creating the SeaXplorer, he worked at
Damen Research, Damen’s High Speed department, Damen’s luxury yacht builder Amels and Damen Yacht Support

Robert van Tol
Partnership Manager, The Superyacht Life Foundation

Profile coming soon

Toby Walker
Area Sales Manager, Benetti

Toby Walker was a yacht broker for 20 years, being Global Sales Director at Camper & Nicholsons, and running his own company, Stockbridge Yacht Brokers, from 2013 until 2016. He then joined the Benetti shipyard in his current role of area Sales Manager. One of Toby’s first brokerage sales was a Benetti; his first ever new-build project a Benetti, and his most recent new project as a broker was a Benetti. It is true to say Toby has enjoyed a long and successful relationship with the yard; one he now hopes to strengthen by being part of their global sales force.

Nicholas Warren
Director, SMS Group

Nick has been with The SMS Group since December 2017 when SMS acquired Burgess Marine. Having worked with the SMS team since the refit of MY Shemara Nick has been closely involved with not only the recent growth of SMS but also the national and international development of the business from a Commercial Marine, Defence and Superyacht perspective. Trading from 7 sites in the UK the business is a major independent ship repairer and marine engineering services provider; with a well-regarded historical lean towards Classic Superyacht refit and restoration. The Group, amongst other marine assets, also owns the Superyacht supplies and procurement specialist Global Services.

The company’s key customers include Blue Chips such as Svitzer, Cunard, BAE Systems and Babcock International, but perhaps more relevant is the company’s recent Superyacht experience gleaned from major refits / restorations such as MY Shemara, MY Alicia, MY Lady A, and numerous other smaller planned and emergency yacht projects undertaken both in the UK and overseas. In addition to the its Superyacht and ship repair concerns The SMS Group also builds various floating structures and a proven range of versatile workboats.

In conclusion Nick has over 20 years commercial experience in the marine sector having begun his career at Ancasta International on the Hamble, thereafter, following various commercial roles, he went on to develop Burgess Marine into a £35m turnover business where in 2015 he led a management buyout; he’s a keen sailor and a recreational diver - he’s also a Freeman of the City of London, and Liveryman of the Worshipful Co. of Shipwrights.

Jonathan Watson
Partner, MFB

Jonathan is Head of Yachting at MFB Solicitors in London with particular expertise in high value, complex superyacht transactions. His deals have involved some of the largest yachts in the world. He advises on ownership structures, sale/purchase contracts, newbuild and refit projects, finance, VAT, flagging, insurance, chartering and management. His clients include wealthy individuals/family offices, banks, managers and institutional investors. Jonathan and his superyacht team were recognised in The Times list of Best Law Firms 2019. He is the legal columnist for Yacht Investor Business and is a member of the Royal Thames Yacht Club.

Nigel Watson
Entrepreneur, Nigel Watson Ltd

Nigel Watson is an aviation consultant ( and Operator ( in the Helicopter industry.

The Nigel Watson Ltd consultancy is principally responsible for the acquisition of VIP Helicopters and their integration aboard some of the largest Luxury yachts and private estates in the world.

His operating company Luviair Ltd operates a fleet of five twin engine Airbus helicopters in support of VIP clients and the luxury yachting industry. Global operations are focused around London, the French Riviera, the Caribbean and embarked aboard Luxury yachts.

Nigel has maritime command experience in the luxury Yachting industry and holds, commercial helicopter and fixed wing flight qualifications.

Mike Wimbridge
Global Underwriter, Pantaenius Yacht Insurance

Mike comes with 30 years experience in the Superyacht insurance industry.

He spent 18 years as a broker, including 14 with Marsh, and subsequently as a Lloyd’s underwriter for Brit & Markel syndicates before joining Pantaenius this year.

John Wyborn
Director of Crew & Training, Bluewater

Profile coming soon

Matty Zadnikar
CEO & Co-owner, SeaNet

Over the past 20 years, Matty Zadnikar (°1961) has earned his spurs founding and developing Z-Safety Services. The company that responded to the industrial safety needs of the oil and gas industry. In 2013 Zadnikar successfully sold his business but didn’t feel ready to put his feet up and relax.

As a child Zadnikar used to spend hours in marinas of the Mediterranean, daydreaming of the yachts he saw cruising by. Having sailed yachts in his spare time for over 30 years and having built and owned his own yachts, Matty is using his passion and experience to benefit SeaNet owners, allowing him to give a whole new dimension to yacht build and management.