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What has Covid-19 taught you about your business?
The need to always be flexible and adapt quickly to changing circumstances. Communicating with staff to keep a group understanding of direction.
How have you found inspiration to adapt to the new “normal”?
As an international group, we have worked globally on strategies to stimulate the current market, we are taking new and different approaches. It is exciting to be looking at everything we know as our businesses and not being afraid to adapt and change.
What have you found your regular customers wanted to be done during these unusual times?
Our core business is the tourism sector essentially through charter boats and bareboat fleets which have been shut down through this period forcing everyone to be very cautious around unnecessary spending. The cruising and live-aboard customers are using the time held up in one location to look at bigger and more time-consuming investments like new sails while they are unable to use their boats as much as they would like too.
Different BIAs have allowed sailing in some states, with maximum of 2 people…do you believe it may be the start of solo or double-handed sailing in Australia?
Not just yet. Unfortunately, with the majority of races being cancelled, people are getting a taste of the shorthanded life but I believe they are going to be very keen to have their other team members rejoin as soon as possible. That said I believe it may be enough of a taste that there is room to push the discipline in the future
How do you see the start of the next sailing season?
The sailing season in North Queensland essentially runs at a different end of the calendar to southern Australia with everything ramping up through the winter months focusing on the August regattas. The organizers of Airlie Beach & Hamilton Island Race Weeks are reportedly optimistic that they will be able to host the events in some format. Those events are 14 weeks away which is relatively far away in the current climate particularly given the huge changes we have experienced week to week recently.