Adventure Syndicate

The Adventure Syndicate has been designed for families and offers a great alternative to a second home. It comes from some of the experiences that we had when my children Stormy, Harper, and May were growing up. We wanted them to learn about the ocean, to feel the adventure of being at sea and the excitement of visiting new places. We wanted to teach them how to swim and dive in the ocean and to understand what it’s like to really switch off and enjoy a good book in a quiet anchorage. To feel the wind in their hair, to see the weather systems roll through and see all of the potential of the world around them. So we owned boats, and we took them far and wide and I have to say that it was one of the best things that we did for our kids as they grew up and we look back on those experiences as the very best of times.

But, like everyone else we were crazy busy at work, the holidays were short and for the most part, our boat sat in a marina unused, requiring maintenance and costing money. The Adventure Syndicate has been designed to provide you with all the good bits, but without the hassle and frustration of paying to own all of a boat that you may not be able to make full use of. Like everything we do at Arksen, I hope it encourages you to join us on this journey and that it is the beginning of a great adventure for you.
 
Jasper Smith,
Founder of Arksen

Adventure Syndicate

Designed for explorers, made for adventure, so why wait?

Arksen has always been about much more than ownership. It’s about the experiences that are available to our community and the opportunities to go beyond the norm. We set out not only to build the very best explorer vessels but to provide the infrastructure and support to enable our community to use them to their fullest potential. The Arksen Explorers Club, Arksen Foundation and the 10% for the Ocean Pledge are the cornerstones of this experiential approach, and we are glad to see the impact that these initiatives are having on the industry as a whole. 

We also wanted to open up more opportunities for our community and their families to embark on these life-enhancing adventures and work with us to engage in important work to help protect the oceans. And so we are proud to offer the Adventure Syndicate, a pioneering club via which Members enjoy shared ownership of one of our unique vessels and full access to the experiences we offer. 

The Adventure Syndicate offers like-minded adventurers several major advantages: 

Game changer

Once in a while, an opportunity comes along that can change the course of our lives forever. The Arksen Adventure Syndicate is one such opportunity, one that provides extraordinary adventures and experiences for you and your family via
a multi-year cruising program in one of our European, Asian, American, or Global syndicates.

Designed for Adventure, Made for Explorers.

Enjoy zero hassle ownership and the benefits of a fully maintained, crewed, and equipped vessel with the financial flexibility to trade in and out of a syndicate at any time. But more importantly, in this time scarce and chaotic world, it provides the ultimate escape, a way of getting off the beaten track, enjoying the wilderness, and participating in projects that will help us better understand and conserve our world’s oceans.

Why Wait?

Our planet is an awe-inspiring place. Full of incredible splendour, beauty, and hidden treasures. Its layers of culture, geography, and colour; from major cities to the smallest settlements, from the Arctic wilderness to the balmy tropics, from a perfect sunny day to a raging storm create an explorer’s paradise. Yet, while many of us might dream of experiencing some of these things, it’s rare that we have the time and tools to embark on and share these adventures. Our aim is to change that by providing everything that you need to start exploring the best that our planet has to offer. 

Why a syndicate?

Our approach to developing the Adventure Syndicate stems from over 25 years of boat ownership. As owners, we soon realised that few of us have the time or money to commit to the full ownership of a large vessel and that even when we do the hassle of maintaining and operating them can wash off the glamour.

It’s an unfortunate truth that the vast majority of yachts sit in the same marina,
little used, year after year, meaning that owners cruise the same waters and anchor in the same bays. Over time, the adventurous spirit that was the inspiration for buying a boat in the first place can get lost. 

However, by creating a fully managed syndicate around a vessel, we can significantly reduce the cost of ownership and ensure that the yachts are fully equipped, operated and maintained to the highest standards. Better still, the Adventure Syndicate offers global opportunities for adventure via four-year
cruising itineraries while working with the Arksen Foundation to support crucial marine research. 

Cruising grounds

You may love sailing in the Mediterranean, or cruising around Northern Europe. You may have dreamed of ski touring in the Norwegian Fjords, or sailing to Kamchatka, or across the Pacific Ocean. You may want to explore New Foundland or Greenland or go diving in the Caribbean. The Arksen Adventure Syndicate provides the opportunity to do all of
these things and more. 

Our syndicates are each based on a cruising area: Europe, the Americas, Asia or Global. Members of one syndicate can swap weeks in one cruising area for another. 

We design the itineraries with all syndicate Members around a 4-year cruising program that is designed to capture the spirit and soul of the region.

Adventure

The Adventure Syndicate is all about… adventure. Allowing you and your family to set off on the journey of a lifetime in a vessel that you own. The logistics and support are provided by the Arksen Explorers Club.  Each syndicate chooses its own itinerary and adventures and these might include the great explorer routes used by Cook, Nansen, Scott, Cousteau or Tilman, it may be following the ancient sailing routes around the Mediterranean. Or a plan entirely of your own making.  

Whatever adventure you want to embark on, the equipment
is onboard. Diving and snorkeling, climbing and hiking, sailing kayaks, paddleboards, sea bobs, Arksen Expedition Rib, kitesurfers, water skis, wakeboards and even underwater
and airborne drones.

Arksen Foundation

The Arksen Foundation is a not-for-profit organisation that provides project funding, facilitates cutting-edge scientific research and creates innovative media to inspire a greater understanding of the beauty, complexity, and fragility of the ocean ecosystem and its interfaces with the land around it. 

It is a platform for research, conservation and creativity in support of the identification of new species, preservation of known species, and stimulating behavioural change globally. The projects we support are in alignment with our cornerstones; research and science projects, education, exploration and sport with purpose. Each vessel in the Adventure Syndicate makes the 10% for the Ocean Pledge, donating 10% of its operating time to scientific work, and the syndicate and members are encouraged to be actively involved.

What do the numbers look like?

The Adventure Syndicate offers fractional ownership of an Arksen vessel, where the full cost of ownership is offset by commercial charter for several weeks per year. The syndicate is designed to last 10 years, but members can trade out at any time. 

Syndicate costs include building the vessel and, post-launch, the costs of crew, maintenance, food while on-board, berthing, and relocation costs. All expenses are shared by members in proportion to their level of ownership and are offset by the commercial charter income. 

Arksen guarantees that at least 5 weeks of commercial charter income will be achieved in the first year. The Explorers Club works with a wide range of charter companies and operates its own charters to maximise charter income in subsequent years.

Syndicate members are allotted 25 weeks usage in the year and 13 weeks are allocated to commercial charter. In addition, 4 weeks are set aside to honour the 10% for the Ocean Pledge and are used to support scientific research sponsored by the Arksen Foundation. The remaining weeks are for maintenance and relocation.

At the end of the 10-year syndicate period, the vessel is expected to worth approximately 46% of its purchase price. On sale, the proceeds are distributed to the syndicate members in proportion to their share of ownership. 

However, syndicate members are free to sell their ownership share at any time. Arksen actively promotes the syndicate shares through a secondary market for membership spaces. 

More details of the costs are included in the FAQ, but as an example: Alice is from the UK and has chosen to join a European syndicate that is buying an Arksen 70. She has decided to buy two weeks of adventure on-board per year for her friends and family. For these two weeks of usage Alice will pay £485,000, spread over 18 months (which she may choose to finance), and will have 8% ownership of the vessel. For every year of membership to the syndicate, Alice will expect to pay approximately £32,600 to cover her share of the upkeep of the boat. The commercial charter of the vessel should keep this number down. These costs represent significantly less than half of the cost of chartering a vessel for the same period.

Alice expects to enjoy the benefits of flexible ownership for 10 years. At the end of this period, Alice will receive a share of the proceeds of the sale of the boat equal to her percentage of ownership. If she owns 8% and based on 54% depreciation over the period, she would expect to receive a little over £220,000. At this point, the net cost to Alice over 10 years will have been approximately £326,000 or £2,720 per month.

FAQ

The beginning of a great adventure

What is an Arksen Explorers Syndicate?

The Arksen Explorers Syndicate works so that Members combine to buy the vessel, which is then managed by a professional crew and made available to Members in proportion to their share of ownership. 

How is a syndicate set up?

Each Syndicate is set up by Arksen as a limited company, incorporated in England, whose business purpose is to own and operate an Arksen vessel.

Each Syndicate Member is a member in two senses of the word: a shareholder in the company and part of a community of like-minded souls. 

How is the syndicate operated?

The Syndicate is operated for the benefit of the Members and is managed by a professional company director who is accountable to the Members. 

The Director will manage the day to day operations and finances of the Syndicate, convene Member meetings, agree usage allocations and the cruising itinerary for the following 24 months and appoint and oversee the Captain of the vessel. 

Are there different types of vessels available in the syndicates?

Yes. The Arksen range has been developed to provide the ultimate mix of sea-going capability and comfort with systems engineered for long periods of time cruising off the grid. These vessels are designed and rated for continual use and are designed for global cruising. 

The Syndicate offer is available for two of our most capable vessels:

Arksen 70 Hybrid accommodates 7 guests in 3 cabins. 
Arksen 85 Hybrid accommodates 10 guests in 4 cabins. 

What is the specification of the syndication vessels?

Each Arksen Explorers Syndicate vessel is specified to a very high level and to our “Explorer’s Specification” which includes almost all of the adventure equipment that you should ever need; 

Diving, snorkelling pack including wet suits
Climbing harnesses, carabiners and ropes
Drones and underwater drones 
Sailing kayaks
Paddleboards
Sea Bobs 
Arksen Expedition rib 
Kitesurfers
Water skis
Wakeboards

What adventures are open to Syndicate Members?

The Arksen Explorer’s Club will create adventurous itineraries for Arksen owners, including Syndicates, and can provide logistical, administrative and operational support.

The Arksen Explorer’s Rally is an epic cruising adventure open to the owners of suitable vessels, especially Arksen explorer vessels. A small fleet of vessels will cruise in company, again with logistical, administrative and operational support provided.

Are there different syndicate types?

Yes. Different Syndicates will own boats that will operate in certain regions. However, as a Member of a Syndicate, your adventure opportunities are not limited to the location of the boat that you co-own.

Instead, subject to availability, the Arksen Explorer Club will enable Members of a European Syndicate, for example, to undertake the adventures that can be enjoyed from a boat in the Americas.

To accommodate the widest community of Members we offer
4 Syndicate types; 

European / Arctic cruising programme
The itinerary includes the Mediterranean, UK and Ireland, Baltic, Norway, Iceland, Faeroes, Greenland.

Americas / Arctic cruising programme 
The itinerary includes the Caribbean, Central America,
South America, North America, New Foundland, Greenland.

Asia / South Pacific
The itinerary includes Australia, New Zealand,
South Pacific, Indonesia, East Asia, Japan, Kamchatka.

Global
Roving itinerary with 5-year cruising programme. 

(Note that there may be differences in operating cost and Member contributions between the Syndicate types. These differences will reflect, for example, the increased fuel consumption of a Global itinerary vs. a European itinerary. Certain assumptions have been made in our high level calculations.)

How is the cruising itinerary decided?

The cruising itinerary will be decided based on the geographic operation area of the Syndicate vessel. Each vessel will be deployed throughout the operational area during the Syndicate period, providing opportunities for Members to explore a variety of cruising grounds. The preferences of all Members will be considered, and the itinerary structured to cater to as many preferences as practicable. The director will be responsible for the final decision on itinerary.

How is usage allocated?

Twenty-five weeks per year will be allocated to Members. This means that, if you want five weeks per year as a priority, you will subscribe for a 20% ownership interest. 

What about the rest of the time?

In addition to the 25 weeks allocated to Members, ten percent of the vessel’s sea time is dedicated to scientific research through the 10% for the Ocean Pledge. Thirteen weeks are allocated to commercial charter with the balance allocated to maintenance and relocation.

Can Members use the 14 weeks allocated to commercial charter?

Yes. The weeks of commercial charter are included to try and maximise usage of the vessel, something we are very passionate about, and to offset operating costs for the Members. The Syndicate Members can decide if they would rather offset costs through charter or collectively cover more of the operating costs in return for more usage. Read below for more detail. 

What is the 10% for the Ocean Pledge?

The 10% for the Ocean Pledge addresses a crisis in funding for ocean related science and conservation by inviting individuals, families and organisations to commit to giving ten percent of their philanthropic or charitable donations to ocean related causes. 10% for the Ocean is run by the Arksen Foundation, a not-for-profit organisation that provides project funding, facilitates cutting-edge scientific research and creates innovative media to inspire a greater understanding of the beauty, complexity and fragility of the ocean ecosystem and its interfaces with the land around it. One of the key aims of the Arksen Foundation is to create the world’s largest marine research fleet, which is why all vessels sold by Arksen commit to donating 10% of the vessel’s sea time to research projects. 

Practicalities of Ownership

Do I have to be on board with other Syndicate Members?

No. However, we may offer events that multiple Members wish to attend together, and some Members may want to share weeks. It’s up to you. 

What if I don’t expect to use all of my allocated weeks in a given year?

Members can swap time between annual allocations with other Members.

Members can also offer allocated but unused weeks for commercial charter and use the charter profit to offset their costs for the year. How many unused weeks are sold for commercial charter will depend on market demand.

What if I want to use more weeks in a given year?

Members can swap time between annual allocations with other Members.

Members can also purchase additional time from the pool of time available for commercial charter.

How are weeks allocated between members?

The year is divided into Peak, Mid and Low season. The dates for each are dependent upon the agreed cruising itinerary. Each Member is allocated a number of weeks in each period based on their percentage share. Members then request their preferred weeks within each period. Where Members have requested the same week, priority will be given to each Member’s request on rotation. In addition to allocated weeks, Members may be able to request additional time on-board during relocation/delivery periods.

Members may also choose to share time on-board, by agreement, thereby increasing the total amount of time on-board each year.

Is the vessel chartered out to third parties?

Yes it is.

For several weeks each year, the vessel is made available for charter to third parties. The revenue from this activity is used to offset the operating costs for Members. Members have priority over the allocation of time. Charter availability is confirmed
only after syndicate member usage has been agreed. The actual charter revenue achieved will depend on the amount of time the Members allocate to charter and market demand.

In the first year of the Syndicate operation, Arksen will guarantee at least 4 weeks of commercial charter revenue.

Who crews the vessel?

Each vessel has two professional crew; a Captain/Engineer and a Mate/Steward. These crew are suitably experienced, have all required professional qualifications and are recruited and trained by Arksen.

How is the vessel maintained?

The vessel is continuously maintained by the full-time crew, with support from specialist contractors and the Arksen support team when required. A comprehensive planned maintenance schedule minimises the chances of unexpected failures, reduces operating costs and maximises safety on-board.

Is food included?

The costs of normal provisioning when in use by Members is included within the operating contribution. However, if a Member wishes to provision with food or drinks that are unusually expensive, then the additional costs will be payable by that Member.

Can I order specific food in advance?

Yes. Provisioning can be arranged so that the vessel is fully stocked with foods of your choice or requirement for your arrival. Subject to availability.

What about fuel and berthing costs?

The costs of fuel and of regular berthing costs when in use by Members or not on charter is included within the operating contribution.

What if I want to stay at a specific marina?

Normal berthing costs are included in the operating contribution. If a Member wishes to stay in a port or marina with unusually high fees, then the additional costs will be payable by that Member.

How many guests can each yacht take?

The Arksen 85 has four cabins that can accommodate up to 10 people.

The Arksen 70 has three cabins that can accommodate up to 7 people.

What is the swap over day?

This will depend on the itinerary, and will be decided for maximum convenience to Members, taking into account flight schedules, local logistics, expected passage times between changeover ports, etc.

What level of crew and service can I expect?

The two permanent crew will operate and maintain the vessel and keep the interior and exterior clean. The Member using the vessel is responsible for cooking, but a welcome meal and final breakfast will be prepared.

Can I upgrade the level of service?

Yes, a chef and/or service staff can be provided, for an additional cost. This will reduce by one the number of guest cabins available.

Do I have to tip the crew?

No, the crew’s salary is structured such that tips are not expected.

What if I want to crew myself?

Yes. We encourage all Members to become captains and believe that learning to operate the vessel at sea can be a hugely rewarding experience. If you have the required commercial qualifications, medical certification and recent operating experience, then you may captain the vessel yourself, and if not why not let us train you and your friends. We offer access to a range of courses. To ensure that all ongoing maintenance is completed correctly, as this requires specific training and familiarity with the systems, at least one staff crew member needs to be on-board when the vessel is in use.

What happens if I damage the boat?

The vessel has an insurance policy in place. For damage sustained while the vessel is under the command of the appointed Captain, the insurance excess will be added to the general operating costs. For damage sustained while under the command of a Member, the insurance excess will be paid for by that Member.

What happens if the vessel is out of service during my weeks?

Every effort is made to undertake maintenance during allocated periods and minimise time out of service during allocated Member Syndicate time. If the vessel is unexpectedly out of service, every effort will be made to provide an alternative allocation as close to the original dates
as possible.

Will I have to pay for the upkeep of the boat?

Yes. You will be expected to make annual contributions to cover the shortfall where charter revenue is not enough to cover costs. 

Syndicate Operations

What is the legal status of the syndicate?

Each Syndicate is an English Limited Company, with shares in the company owned by the Syndicate Members.

How is the company run?

The company will be run according to bespoke articles of association.

The company will have a sole Director, appointed by Arksen. This person will be responsible for overseeing all corporate and financial matters of the company and will be the primary point of contact for the Members. The Director will appoint a Captain, who will be responsible for the day-to-day operational running of the vessel – the company’s primary asset – with the support of the shoreside Arksen team.

Regular management accounts will be provided to all Members.

How long does Membership last?

Each Syndicate will operate for 10 years’ duration from delivery of the vessel to the Syndicate. Members can transfer out of their membership before the end of this period.

What if I want to get out early?

Shares in each Syndicate company can be sold by the Member at any time, including during the vessel construction period. The value realised will be subject to market demand, and could exceed the original investment if sold to a buyer wishing to ‘jump the queue’. If a Member wishes to sell their shares, the other Syndicate Members have the right of first refusal. 

If no other Member wishes to buy out the leaving Member, Arksen will market the share to potential buyers who have registered interest. To fund the marketing of the shares and simulate market demand Arksen charges a 6% commission on the value of the sale to the new buyer and the retiring Member. 

The Member is also free to market their share directly.

The Economics of Membership – Investing in a Syndicate

What is my minimum investment required to become a Syndicate Member?

What is my minimum investment required to become a Syndicate Member?

The amount will depend on which vessel is bought by the Syndicate, but the minimum investment level represents an 8% share. 

25 weeks per year of usage are allocated to Members, to be split between them according to the membership size.

This means that 8% membership will get you 2 weeks per year Member Usage. 

Above 8%, further investment will be accepted in increments of 4%, with each 4% representing one week of Member Usage.

Can I get together with friends to buy into the Syndicate?

As long as the Member is a single legal person, managed by a single individual who can underwrite the group, yes, it is possible for a group to form a Syndicate Member.

How many weeks of priority usage will I get as a Member?

This will depend on your proportion of the Syndicate. One week of priority usage is equal to 4% ownership interest in the Syndicate. 

For example, if you own 20% of a Syndicate, you will be entitled to 5 weeks of usage of the vessel owned by the Syndicate.

If I am a UK taxpayer, can I invest through the Enterprise Investment Scheme?

Potential investors should seek their own advice but the company into which Members will invest should be considered a qualifying company for the purposes of the Enterprise Investment Scheme.

For the avoidance of doubt, no representations or warranties are made to this effect by Arksen and no reliance should be placed on Arksen in respect of the availability to an investor of income tax relief under the Enterprise Investment Scheme.

How are Member payments into the Syndicate structured during the vessel build?

The vessels are purpose-built for each syndicate and so the initial payments are structured to coincide with the major milestones of the build period as outlined below. The following is meant as a guide and will be subject to variation:
StageMonth%
Deposit15%
Start Build320%
Stage 1620%
Stage 2920%
Stage 31220%
Stage 41510%
Stage 5185%
100%

What about after the build?

The Members pay contributions quarterly (in advance) to cover for the running costs of the vessel, including maintenance, insurance, staff costs, fuel, berthing, provisions, agency fees, administrative and legal costs. If the Syndicate has taken on asset finance, Members’ contributions will also include debt service. These costs are offset by any income generated from commercial charter.

Is there an option to finance buying Syndicate Membership?

Yes. Subject to availability, loan support may be available.
1) Asset finance loan made to the company and secured on the vessel owned by the company; and
2) Personal lending to Syndicate Members.

1) Asset Finance
Arksen can offer an asset finance programme, designed to smooth the cash obligations on Syndicate Members.
These loans would be non-recourse to the Members but would include stringent requirements for Members to ensure the company is funded to make debt service obligations.
More detailed information is provided in the section below called ‘Debt Finance’.

2) Personal Lending
Members are of course free to secure personal loans from lenders of their choice in order to fund costs of entry and ongoing commitments in the Syndicate.

Arksen would be happy to make introductions to potential lenders but these arrangements are for your own personal accounts and independent of Arksen.

Am I personally liable for the debt?

If you choose to become a Member of a Syndicate that has Asset Finance, you will not be personally liable beyond the amount of your contributions into the company to date (the Syndicate membership investment and annual contributions).

What happens if a Syndicate member defaults on their obligations so that the company cannot service the asset finance?

After a default of more than 60 days, the defaulting Member will forfeit their shares in the company (and therefore all investment to date). 

The remaining Members will have the right to purchase these shares and step into the defaulting Member’s shoes. If no other Member steps into the defaulting Member’s shoes, Arksen will seek to introduce a new Member. 

The Economics of Membership – Membership Contributions

Are there ongoing costs associated with Membership?

The Members will be required to make contributions to the company budget to reflect the fact that third-party charter revenue will not be sufficient to cover all the running costs of the vessel.

What is included in the Members’ contributions?

The Members’ contribution pays for the running costs of the vessel, including maintenance, insurance, staff costs, fuel, berthing, provisions, agency fees, administrative and legal costs. 

If the Syndicate has taken on asset finance, Members’ contributions will also include debt service.

What form will the annual contributions take?

The company will issue new shares in exchange for the Members’ contributions. 

How are the Members’ contributions calculated?

Members’ contributions are estimated based on the expected regular running costs and finance costs of the vessel, plus a contingency to account for periodic larger expenditures, such as dry docking. A deduction is made to account for income from commercial charter revenue.

What happens if there is a shortfall?

If there is a shortfall, the Members will be required to fund the difference, in proportion to their shareholding in the Syndicate operating company.

What happens if there is a surplus?

The Syndicate aims to maintain a surplus to account for periodic larger expenditures. If the surplus is unexpectedly large, contributions from Members would be reduced accordingly. Any surplus when the Syndicate is wound up will be distributed to the Members in proportion to the shareholding.

Th Economics of Membership – The End of Membership

What happens at the end of the Syndicate’s life?

The default position is that the vessel will be sold by the Syndicate operating company and the proceeds distributed to the Members. Arksen will broker the sale of the vessel on an arms-length basis to the Syndicate or may offer to acquire the vessel from the Syndicate. In the event that Arksen sells the vessel its then brokerage fees will apply.

Alternative arrangements, such as continuing the Syndicate, can be accommodated upon agreement between the Members.

Can I buy the vessel at the end of the Syndicates life?

The vessel will be sold by the company on an arms-length basis to realise maximum returns to all Members. Any individual Member may offer to purchase the vessel.