About Horizon

Six Periods of Transformation:
Horizon Yachts’ evolution into the largest private luxury yacht manufacturer.

1987 ~ Establishment of Horizon Yacht
Founded in 1987 by Gong Shan Chiai, Cheng Shun Hui, and John Lu. John Lu named the company “Horizon Yacht” to reflect an image of broad scope, hope, and the desire to embrace the future. The Taiwan yacht building industry was booming, and John led the start-up team of just under 30 employees with passion and enthusiasm.

1988
~ 1991 A shift in market focus
Horizon’s initial business model was as an OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer), building motoryachts under 50 feet for customers in the U.S., Australia, and Sweden. Appreciation of the Taiwanese dollar, higher labor wages and rising raw materials prices began to impact exports to the company’s most important market – the U.S. – which forced John to change his business strategy and market focus. In response to the dip in the market, Horizon designed and developed its own 45 and 58-foot models and shifted focus from the U.S. to Europe and Asia. This move cemented the future for Horizon’s global business development and established a foundation for market segmentation and risk diversification.

1987~1991

The Period of Establishment & Focus

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1992 ~ 1996 Success in Europe and the path to growth
The first phase of the market transition was successfully underway, and Horizon’s annual exports were well received in the European and Asian markets. The company continued operation as an OEM while at the same time building its own branded products. Seeing success with its Elegance models, which were co-developed by Horizon and its European dealer Drettmann, Horizon Yacht accelerated its development in Europe, introduced its first 80-foot model, and began a rapid expansion that would set the pace for the next 12 years.

1992~1996

The Period of Market Development

1997 ~ 2001 Focus on quality and innovation
Horizon Yacht obtained the ISO-9002 certification and became the first quality assurance shipyard in Taiwan to receive the CE marking. At this stage, the company not only continued to expand its business in Europe, but also set up new brokerage houses in the U.S. to sell its own brand of Horizon yachts. To meet the demand for maximum production capacity, the company created the Atech Composites facility and Vision Shipyard.During company's rapid growth, John Lu gradually standardized administration and manufacturing processes via computer system to maintain quality and efficiency, with the goal of building Horizon shipyard as a world-class yacht company with its own brand and culture.

1997~2001

The Period of Capacity Development and Expansion

2002 ~ 2006 Moving to a group management business model
Business was booming, and to meet the increased demand for production capacity John Lu established specialized member factories. Premier Yachts, CNC Tooling Center and Q&E Furniture were founded one by one. A Group Management Center, with John as the CEO, was established to oversee the administration of the five companies, which covered over 1.2 million square feet with more than 1,200 employees. During this period the European market continued to thrive and sales in the United States grew year by year. Production at the Horizon and Vision Shipyards was at full capacity, with many orders for large yachts, which led to the expansion of both the shipyard and personnel on an unprecedented scale.

The first phase of the market transition was successfully underway, and Horizon’s annual exports were well received in the European and Asian markets. The company continued operation as an OEM while at the same time building its own branded products. Seeing success with its Elegance models, which were co-developed by Horizon and its European dealer Drettmann, Horizon Yacht accelerated its development in Europe, introduced its first 80-foot model, and began a rapid expansion that would set the pace for the next 12 years.

2002~2006

The Period of Combined Manufacturing

2007 ~ 2011 A crisis becomes a turning point
The unexpected global financial crisis rocked the yacht building industry, causing Horizon’s largest dealer Drettmann to go bankrupt and presenting Horizon with its greatest challenge since its establishment. Despite the financial impact and the cancellation of most orders, the Group adopted the strategy of “self-build, self-market” to complete ten superyachts – each over 105 feet in length – and six superyachts – each over 130 feet in length. At the same time, John Lu worked out a plan to withstand the economic ebb and flow through brand identity and awareness.

The global economic crisis demonstrated that brands with strong identity and less dependency on dealers could resist market downturn, so John set out to re-build Horizon’s brand identity. He implemented a brand re-engineering plan that would canvas the global market and create a cohesive brand spirit throughout the organization and its employees. The Group set up a marketing center dedicated to developing the Horizon brand by raising Horizon’s brand awareness, enhancing brand image and creating brand value.

2007~2011

The Period of Recession

2012 ~ 2016 A strong brand image elevates
Horizon to a top 5 builder Horizon turned its focus to the development of its own brand and established a dominant position from a design, manufacturing, marketing and service standpoint. In addition to promoting the Horizon brand, the Group members continued to welcome innovative manufacturing technology and create new yacht models to satisfy global customers’ needs. With this cohesive Group effort, Horizon has risen in position to become the world’s fifth largest custom yacht manufacturer. Today, the Horizon brand represents yachts that are admired by yachting enthusiasts around the world and backed by numerous international prestigious yachting awards.

2012~2016

The Period of Dominance

Horizon's accolades and achievements are testaments to the company's strenghth.  With 30 years of experience already accumulated, Horizon Group will continue our dedication to craftsmanship, technology, and quality on the global yachting stage.

2017~

The Period of Demonstrable Value