One other shipbulider change owner. The company founded by Albert Couach in 1897, initially making marine engines in Arcachon Bay now specialized in the design, construction and marketing of luxury motoryachts from 20m-50m (66ft-164ft), owned by the the Vial family. The family has sold the company to a group of French investors. Nepteam is owned by industrial investors keen to preserve the yard’s heritage in Arcachon Bay in southwest France. Its chairman is Christian Chevalier, a local businessman and former president of ADERA, the Association for the Development of Teaching and Research in Aquitaine.
According to a group statement, Nepteam intends to preserve and expand employment at the Gujan Mestras shipyard and at Couach’s other sites. Yacht maintenance will be redeployed to the former naval air station in Toulon, around the existing Saint Mandrier site. Nepteam’s objective for the future is to roll out a boatbuilding research programme focusing on technological and scientific developments in materials and propulsion technologies. Another aspect will be the inclusion of environmental concerns in boat design.