**Who owns a yacht? Most people would assume it’s exclusively the rich and famous, but do you really have to be made of money to enjoy the invigorating rush of the ocean air in style?** This must have been something Chris Hawes pondered before setting up Yacht Fractions Limited in 1991. Of course, he would have known that it would be no easy feat bringing something new to the yacht business, but with a powerful idea and the drive to make it succeed, the rest would appear to be all plain sailing. The aim of Chris’s company is to promote the capital sharing of pleasure sailing yachts. Having applied his acumen as a trained accountant, Chris clearly saw the financial and physiological reasons not to own an entire boat to oneself. This left open a window of opportunity, into which Yacht Fractions Managing Director Chris jumped head first. Yacht Fractions Limited is the only established and recognised source of shared Yacht ownership in Europe, USA and Australia. With more than a share sold every week and a database of over 500 yachts, the initial plans have clearly come to fruition. “Our concept, not be confused with time share, is to offer privately owned shares in privately controlled and managed yachts”, explains Chris. “Each boat is typically owned by 4 or 5 people, one owner acts as the group manager and the future of the boat is totally in the hands of the owners, there are no external management companies or influences to control the sharing of the boat”. This is certainly an attractive prospect for those hoping to get a break at some point in the year and the most interesting aspect of this arrangement is the low annual cost. A ¼ share will give the owner six weeks exclusive use of the boat whereas owning one would cost close to £1800 per week to charter. As well as not having to be a millionaire to enjoy a yacht, you also don’t have to be a maritime expert, which is encouraging news for the amateurs. Obviously those looking to share are required to have an adequate level of experience or qualifications in sailing which can be gained through learning; this will vary from boat to boat and the attitude of the other owners in the boat and the insurance company. However, in some cases, co-owners can develop friendships as a result of the share and one may coach another in the art of sailing. The largest boats surprisingly often require no knowledge at all. They will have permanent professional skippers who will take a flexible role in the sailing of the boat depending on the experience of the owner. The big news from Yacht Fractions is that they’ve joined forces with the owner of their largest yacht on offer, and are currently in the process of forming Sail Fractions Limited, which will specialise in the sharing of larger sailing and motor yachts. A share will give 4 weeks exclusive use of a boat each year, plus the opportunity to join in twice yearly trans-atlantic crossings. The boat will cruise in both the Med and the Caribbean each year, so those with a share can be sure to soak up some sunshine. Chris gives us a tempting idea of what to expect onboard - “The boat comes with a professional skipper, a five star chef (ex Rick Stein) and a hostess, allowing guests to enjoy top hotel quality accommodation and fine dining. No sailing experience is required although the Skipper is always happy to share his responsibilities and hand over the reins at the appropriate time.” Yacht Fractions have also formed a relationship with one of the world’s most prestigious boatyards - Oyster Marine, who build the ‘Bentleys’ of the yachting world and are based in Ipswich. The company will be offering shares in currently owned larger yachts and will welcome approaches from any owner who simply does not have time to enjoy their yacht to the full and would like the use of a good brokerage service and experience. For full up to date listings of the boats on offer in the UK and overseas, you can visit Alternatively you can get in touch with Chris Hawes By Email: Or phone: 01326 375535 If you’re living abroad and looking for a quick and simple way to save money on foreign exchange, ensure you get the best, bank-beating rates and service now by calling Currency Solutions on +44(0) 207 7 4000 00