The Cape Boat Building industry is well established and has a good global reputation, regularly being nominated for and winning international awards.
The largest number of boats manufactured are catamarans and South Africa is ranked globally as number 2 in the world after France in terms of catamaran units produced. This is largely driven by one production builder, Robertson and Caine who produce more than 220 boats per year in the luxury catamaran sector and employ 1700 people.
The other catamaran builders are medium or small companies that each produce between between 1 and 10 boats per year. A significant economic contributor to the sector is Southern Wind Shipyard who manufacture extremely high-end superyachts. Whilst they only produce one or two boats a year, these vessels will each retail for approximately R270m.
South Africa also has a good reputation for semi-rigid boat production and rescue craft with several manufacturers in this sub sector. In the last financial year there has been an increase in the number of component and equipment manufacturers and economic activity in this sub sector. These companies include sail makers (4 lofts), mast builders, rigging components, marine grade rope, aluminium doors, upholstery, carbon fibre hatches, engine components and stainless steel accessories. The Boatbuilding and Marine Manufacturing sector is currently valued at about R2.2bn per annum.