MYS 2018: Boutique Brokerage with West Nautical
Another MYS has come around, and we are joined by Kurt Fraser, Commercial Director of West Nautical, who tells us why 'the bigger the better' does not necessarily apply to brokerage.
Kurt Fraser was at Camper-Nicholson for 8 years before making the shift to West Nautical, where he now serves as Commercial Director. The change from a big to boutique brand was a calculated one, Kurt reveals, made with the intent of delivering hightened levels of service and expertise to clients.
"I enjoyed my time with Camper Nicholson immensely," says Fraser, "But for me, brokerage has its challenges and its limitations. A boutique firm is closer to the needs of its clients day to day."
West Nautical is a small brokerage, with fewer yachts to represent than the large industry players. This means that they are able to spend longer on their clients, resulting in a more specialised service. "For clients that are not looking for the traditional brokerage model, we are very well suited," Kurt tells us.
West Nautical's boutique size means that they are not looking to grow in the traditional sense. They have no ambitions to expand their fleet so that they may continue to service their existing vessels at an exceptionally high standard, illustarted in Kurt's assertion that "they know they are a big fish in our small pond".
West Nautical also differs from other brokerage houses in its services and origins. "The comapny was born out of managaement services," says Kurt, "We specialise in new construction, operational management for yachts, techncal services, regulatory knowledge, and we are expanding to formalise involement in yacht listing, charter management, and retail charter."
Although many of these services are provided by other companies, the difference lies in the fact that West Nautical have what Kurt refers to as a 'broker free DNA'. They have client managers representing the front end, and customers have unfiltered access to a specialist team who cover eveything from regularoty, operational, technical and marketing topics. Kurt elaborates: "We operate as a group, as opposed to other brokeragers where the single point of compatct is a sales broker."
West Nautical's intimate fleet grace the docks of Port Hercule this year, including a 55m Sanlorenzo vessel, a 60m Bennetti available for sale, a 34m Customer Line and the 30m Lady Amanda, who has been one of their greatest charter performers.
"For me, brokerage has its challenges and its limitations. A boutique firm is closer to the needs of its clients day to day."