Yachtalia, Paolo Tazzini, Captayn Platform

Face to face with Paolo Tazzini, on the navigation bridge of Yachtalia, leading an innovative software company that can transform the mission and success of customer care

by Olimpia De Casa

An engineering graduate (number 007 in his class at the University of Pisa, as he likes to point out) with a background full of important professional experience gained at Ferrari, Piaggio, Riva and Yachtalia, Paolo Tazzini knows exactly what he is doing. Customer care and after-sales service in the nautical sector have become his credo. In fact, for more than fifteen years, he has proudly carried the responsibility of managing some (read: many) of the finest boats that sail the world’s oceans. A passionate, competent, knowledgeable, outspoken professional who is proud of his skills, including his oratory.

Based on 2023 Navigo data, the founder and CEO of Yachtalia highlights the excitement in the construction sector, and in particular the superyacht industry, which tops the list of most powerful nautical productions. With all the precautions that are obligatory for a service provider operating through a global network, he cannot afford to score an own goal. So he begins with the slides produced by the most extensive network of nautical companies in Tuscany, and one of the most important in Europe, to outline the role and potential of Yachtalia.

WE HAVE MOVED FROM PROVIDING SEASONAL SUPPORT TO PROVIDING A CONTINUOUS SERVICE ALL YEAR ROUND.

Founded in 2012, the company operates in the high-end boating segment, specialising in after-sales services: an international benchmark at the forefront of maintenance, distribution and supply of technological products installed on board the most prestigious yachts. “For several years now, we have been facing a very important production of superyachts, with equally high growth rates. A situation that corresponds to an increasing level of complexity in design and on-board equipment. More sophisticated boats require more focused attention and a longer-term vision. The simultaneous increase in production, not always accompanied by the availability of new, highly trained and skilled professionals, and the never-ending desire to amaze the world, inevitably lead to some mistakes. There is an atavistic shortage of professionals at all levels, from top management down to the sailor”.

I think that you have had an advantage out of this situation… The present scenario not only had a positive impact on our business, with exponential growth in the number of requests for interventions and, consequently, in our turnover. But it has also deeply changed us in the way we do business and are present on the market. From seasonal support, we have moved on to continuous year-round service, which involves the ability to work alongside shipyards even during the production stage, with support and assistance in the installation of on-board systems and equipment, conceived and implemented with a preventive and, therefore, conservative perspective in mind.

TODAY, SHIPOWNERS ORDER THEIR DREAM BOAT NOT ONLY ON THE BASIS OF A BRAND’S RELIABILITY, NAME AND REPUTATION, BUT ALSO ON THE QUALITY OF THE SERVICE NETWORK THE YARD CAN OFFER.

Is Preventing Better Than Curing? Without a doubt. Tests, regular check-ups and screenings are not only worthwhile when it comes to our health. In short, Yachtalia has gone from being the emergency room doctor who saves your life, but whom you can’t wait to say goodbye to, to the specialist who takes care of you and guides you to make your life longer. Exactly. That is why, after signing important cooperation agreements, we have gone further down the road of prevention, to the point of introducing the practice of regular check-ups in recreational boating. In this particular case, we are talking about checks on doors, hatches, balconies and, in general, all those devices that are becoming more and more complex because they are full of oil or sensors and are, by their very nature, more prone to clogging, malfunctioning or breakage and therefore require specific and competent care.

How did that go? I would say very well. Once the first season was over and the boat owners had called us to say that they had had no problems with the bathing platform or the stabilisation system during their holiday, it became a matter of course to call them back every year for the next check. It was undoubtedly a cultural change that we wanted to encourage, but it was a change that came easily to us because these owners were already used to taking their Bentleys in for regular servicing. We didn’t have to explain anything to them. Even the three of us (Mirco Taddeucci, Yachtalia’s head of design and communication, is present, ed.) get a call every year from the heating engineer reminding us to make an appointment for the annual inspection and cleaning. This is a culture that did not exist until six or seven years ago for large boats worth several million dollars. Today, hatch inspections are a must.

CAPTAYN IS A DEDICATED AFTER-SALES PLATFORM ALLOWING USERS TO REQUEST SUPPORT, MAINTENANCE, AND SPARE PARTS VIA AN APP IN AN INTUITIVE, RELIABLE, AND PUNCTUAL WAY ANYWHERE IN THE WORLD.

What’s the next step? The development of Captayn, another milestone in Yachtalia’s history: a dedicated after-sales platform that allows the user to request support, maintenance and spare parts via an app, in an intuitive, reliable and timely manner, anywhere in the world. It is also designed to increase the value of these boats over time. Let me be clear: by implementing the paradigm shift that has transformed the concept of service from an emergency expense item to an activity that provides useful data to improve service quality, we have had to influence the aspects that psychologically guide the new buyer’s choice of boat/shipyard.

What does this mean? Shipowners now order their dream boat not only on the basis of a brand’s reliability, name and reputation, but also on the basis of the quality of the service network the yard can offer, the likelihood of breakdowns, or the fact that their friend or quay neighbour told them: “Yes, it’s a nice boat, but forget it: something always breaks”. As a result, some of these units do not retain their resale value after the second sale, and that is why we have created Captayn Platforms, the solution to the scenario we have just outlined.

The Yachtalia team is made of highly skilled factory trined figures who constantly collaborate with industry specialists to guarantee assistance at any time.

CAPTAYN PLATFORM COMPLETELY REDESIGNS THE METHODS AND TIMING FOR RECEIVING AND PROCESSING REPORTED PROBLEMS. IT ELIMINATES ALL THE INEFFICIENCIES CAUSED BY THE TYPICAL DELAYS GENERALLY ASSOCIATED WITH “DIAGNOSIS”, I.E. UNDERSTANDING EXACTLY WHAT THE PROBLEM IS SO THAT INTERVENTION ON BOARD CAN BE MUCH QUICKER.

How does it work? What are the advantages for the user? Immediately granted the status of an innovative start-up, it completely redesigns the methods and timing for receiving and processing reported problems. It eliminates all the inefficiencies caused by the typical delays generally associated with “diagnosis”, i.e. understanding exactly what the problem is so that intervention on board can be much quicker.

How does it do it? By allowing the user, the shipowner or, more often, the captain, to request the intervention of a specialised technician without having to send an e-mail to the shipyard, which must first check the validity of the warranty, proceed in turn to ask a series of useful questions to define the exact nature of the issue, forward the request to the appropriate person, wait for confirmation, and only then proceed to send the local technician on-site.

Who, I suppose, will become the punching bag of the anger that has been building up during the wait for his arrival… Exactly. And not only that: if something goes wrong or does not work, you can be sure that it will happen in the middle of the holidays, perhaps at the weekend, when the offices are closed, on the other side of the world, when the difference in language and time zone will only increase the number of misunderstandings or setbacks. With Captayn, on the other hand, whose slogan is “From ten days to ten minutes”, but also “Life on a boat must be easy”, the user is guided step by step – with video tutorials and close-ups similar to those that show you how to clean your new kitchen appliance or connect the latest electronic device – and asked to answer a few, but “correct”, questions posed directly by the manufacturer of the system or accessory. Automatically, the yard and service network get everything they need to solve the problem very quickly. No one – shipowner, captain, crew member or service point – will ever feel that they are not up to the task. And everyone – especially Yachtalia – lived happily ever after, as in any fairy tale worthy of the name.

(Yachtalia, Paolo Tazzini, Captayn Platform – Barchemagazine.com – March 2024)