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There has been much speculation in recent weeks about whether the Monaco Yacht Show — the world’s largest Superyacht Show—scheduled September 23-26 will— and furthermore— should take place this year.

Yachts International is apprised of a recent letter that SYBAss (Super Yacht Builder Association) LYBRA (Large Yacht Brokers Association) have written to Informa, the owner/operators of the Monaco Yacht Show. The letter explains that both associations, which acted cooperatively through this process, have doubts over the safety of the show, the ability and/or willingness for clients to attend and whether the show is appropriate within the context of the global pandemic. SYBAss accounts for 21 of the world’s premier superyacht builders such as Oceanco, Lürssen, Feadship, Benetti, and Amels and LYBRA accounts for eight of the world’s leading superyacht brokerage houses, such as Burgess, Fraser, Edmiston, Northrop & Johnson, and IYC.

“Throughout our industry, there has been much speculation as to whether the Monaco Yacht Show can take place this year. Lockdown arrangements across the globe currently vary and travel restrictions are extensive. It is clear that the necessity for social distancing will continue for the foreseeable future, but beyond that, the detail of the varying government-led restrictions in the coming months is unknown,” begins the letter.


“In this climate of uncertainty, however, both LYBRA and SYBAss members have reached a clear decision that they do not intend to participate in MYS 2020, even if it is able to go ahead in September as scheduled. Our reasons are twofold.”

The letter explains that neither SYBAss nor LYBRA believe that their target clients will attend, whether that be because of travel restrictions, or simply a diminished appetite to engage in such an event when it risks their health and the health of their families and friends. Both associations are hesitant to engage in an event that they believe cannot guarantee the safety of their staff or clients, given that there are no-yet proven methods to prevent the risk and spread of COVID-19. The parties further query whether or not it is appropriate for such a luxury event, a celebration of wealth, to continue when the rest of the world continues to suffer through the pandemic.

“… our industry faces a new environment going forward. We simply cannot be investing such significant sums at this time into an event that looks likely to provide us with even less of an ROI than recent years and with an organizer that has consistently refused to listen to the voices of its most important players – the exhibitors,” continues the letter.

The letter clearly indicates that both SYBAss and LYBRA wish to continue supporting the show in the future, under the proviso that the organizers re-engage with the market via a working group to constructively discuss the future of the show and how it can grow and evolve to better suit the requirements of the exhibitors and indeed the customers that attend. However, in the short term SYBAss and LYBRA implore MYS to cancel the 2020 edition.

"...we request that Informa take stock of the situation and consider cancelling the show.”

It reads: “With the non-participation of LYBRA and SYBAss members likely resulting in a deterioration of exhibiting yachts, major industry companies no longer being present at the show, and the potential negative perception of the superyacht industry by the general public, we request that Informa take stock of the situation and consider cancelling the show.”

Our Yachts International sources say, the letter is meant to be a positive letter; it is asking Informa to do the right thing and the right thing is to not have the show.”