Royal Huisman Set To Expand With New Key Shareholders

By Ben Roberts

Royal Huisman has announced that the expansion of its infrastructure will be the prime focus as Doeksen Shipyard Holding, led by Royal Doeksen, becomes a key shareholder. The decision reflects the yard’s growing order book – with more and even larger new build and refit projects – as well as the inevitable need for succession planning in a family-owned business.

Royal Doeksen is a highly complementary fit for Royal Huisman. In addition to their Royal warrants, both companies are Dutch family-owned businesses with a long and successful track record in the marine industry, a common understanding of the nature of ship building and an appreciation of the special long term client relationships that are pivotal to success in custom yacht building. Royal Huisman CEO Alice Huisman will continue in her current role as a valued shareholder and will be joined on the board by Royal Doeksen Managing Director Jan Willem Doeksen.

There will be complete continuity of the current management and operational teams – whose support for the aims and objectives of this project reinforces the yard’s “business as usual” message to customers and industry colleagues alike.

“Given the increasing level of investment necessary to maintain a leading custom yard such as Royal Huisman, we recognised that we had arrived at the right time to seek a suitable partner,” comments Alice Huisman.

“There will be some exciting developments showcasing our expansion plans, not least our goal to establish a deep water facility in a Dutch coastal location. These plans will enable us to achieve further successful growth of our already healthy order book for both new-build and refit projects.

“Another important consideration has been succession planning,” adds Alice Huisman. “For the first time in five generations there was no family heir of the necessary age and experience to lead a business of this scale to the next stage. I strongly believe that, as owners of the company today, my family and I owe it to our forefathers, to our team, and to present and future clients to ensure an orderly succession of this remarkable organisation.”

Doeksen Shipyard Holding is investing in the Huisman holding company, whose operations include Royal Huisman Shipyard, its refit programme Huisfit, and Rondal, the high-end manufacturer of custom masts and components for the superyacht industry. Rondal is a semi-autonomous operation with its own facilities, clients and brand, and will continue as such.

On behalf of Royal Doeksen, Jan Willem Doeksen comments: “We are extremely pleased to have the opportunity to partner with Royal Huisman, a true industry leader and a company with a great reputation. We are fully committed to the culture, values and quality standards of the Royal Huisman brand and its focus on innovation and sustainability. We hope to work together to expand the capabilities and reach of this world-renowned custom yard. It is a great privilege for all of us on the Doeksen team to join forces with another true family company.” 

By Ben Roberts