Dutch superyacht builder Oceanco and British engineering firm BMT Nigel Gee have signed a strategic partnership to form a new naval architect and engineering practice under the name Lateral Naval Architects Ltd.
At a press conference, Oceanco group marketing manager Paris Baloumis introduced the new firm, which is dedicated to superyachts in excess of 100 metres.
Lateral will be financially supported by Oceanco and is, essentially, an offshoot of the large yacht division at BMT Nigel Gee. It will be situated in a new studio on Shamrock Quay in Southampton, with James Roy, yacht design director of BMT Nigel Gee, serving as the firm’s entity managing director.
Its 50-strong team of engineers and naval architects are currently working on four 100m+ new-build projects and a series of smaller projects.
With the ambition of becoming “the Apple of naval architecture”, branding consultant Peter Economidas outlined that the firm’s focus is to provide expert naval architecture and engineering services to the industry at large, as well as collaborate with Oceanco’s in-house engineering team. Lateral will undertake all of BMT’s efforts in the superyacht market.
Roy, who has expanded BMT Nigel Gee’s large yacht division over the course of 12 years, commented, “Lateral is a joint venture between our two companies that will deliver to the market more than the sum of its parts.”
Discussing Lateral’s approach, he said new solutions would be sought by “…asking new questions. Lateral thinking is solving problems through an indirect and creative approach; this is at the heart of the Lateral brand.”
Marcel Onkenhout, CEO of Oceanco, added, “Lateral will not only deliver high quality naval architecture and engineering to Oceanco with greater focus, but will work with the best across the whole of the superyacht industry to apply expert knowledge and deliver exceptional projects.”
Oceanco and BMT Nigel Gee’s collaboration began in 2008 and has spawned a range of vessels including the 92-metre Equanimity, 86-metre Aquijo, 110-metre Jubilee, 106-metre Black Pearl and the soon-to-launch Y718.
For more information, visit BMT Nigel Gee.