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Business with Passion
June 27, 2013   
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Wojciech Kot, co-owner of the Delphia Yachts company, the largest builder of luxury yachts in Poland, talks to Magdalena Łasak.

Your boats have found buyers around the world. What’s the secret of your success?

Both my brother and I are sailors and hold a skipper’s license. Our company employs around 10 marine helmsmen, a dozen or so yacht helmsmen and over 100 sailors. Our staff sail all the time. We mainly work within our own community, by which I mean the Olecko area [in northeastern Poland] where our yard is located. This is where our managerial staff and a dozen or so engineers come from.

We had a clear goal from the beginning, but we never expected to achieve such a strong position on the market. I must say that throughout our company’s history, there was never a single bad idea. For example, when we planned our production, we chose to have modern buildings. We built innovative buildings 15 years ago that can be enlarged and upgraded. The halls are safe, easy to modernize and our production lines are easily modifiable.

We also chose the best dealers out there and (…) I can say that solid foundations, including the right decisions, good planning and efficient management have contributed to our success. And then there is hard work.

Who are your customers?

They are top management, that is, active people, many of them from the liberal professions, who can afford a hobby like this. They are passionate about sailing. We have been watching the customer market develop and we can see that at present even people in their 20s can afford to buy a yacht. We have buyers across Poland and we also sell yachts abroad, mostly to Scandinavia.

Your company has produced almost 3,000 yachts. What are your plans for the coming years?

Our future plans are tied with the company’s policy regarding both production and maintaining our dealership chain, mostly in German-speaking countries, the Netherlands and Russia.

The vacuum infusion process allows boat builders to decrease the weight of their hulls and decks thanks to better control of the resin quantity, without compromising stiffness and resistance. Resin flows into an air-free composite “sandwich,” usually two layers of glass or carbon fiber, with a foam core in the middle to add stiffness without adding too much weight.

In a nutshell, the vacuum infusion process enables boat builders to make lighter hulls and decks compared with the “wet” process in which builders apply resin directly on fibers with painters’ rollers. The vacuum infusion method requires solid know-how as it is a complicated process in which airtightness, a steady vacuum, and regular impregnation speed are the key to achieving quality and durable hulls and decks.

The vacuum infusion process is a composite process that offers the possibility to create superior products from fiber-reinforced plastics that are lightweight yet extremely strong.
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