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Piero Picchiotti dies at the age of 96

Legendary shipbuilder Piero Picchiotti has died at the age of 96.

Piero was the heir to a long dynasty of Italian shipbuilders which began as far back as 1600.

The family were the owners of the Arno shipyard which was responsible for the Leopard brand, a collaboration with architect Peolo Caliari and later the Tecnomarine and also the Picchiotti Alitalia and Dry Martini offshore hulls for class 1 of the world powerboat championship and the Viareggio–Bastia–Viareggio.

The shipyard’s clientele ranged from Gianni Agnelli and Alberto di Liegi and Piero himself became a highly respected consultant for shipowners from all over the world.

Together with his cousin Memo, Piero managed the shipyard and contributed to the rebirth of the leisure yachting industry, moving away from the construction of naval vessels after World War II with the building of famous gentleman yachts such as the MY Kon Tiki in 1947, MY Anita in 1955 and the Solitaire motor yacht in 1977.

In 1982 the flagship of the Picchiotti fleet – and one of the largest yachts in the world at the time – the 103m motor yacht Al Said was built in Marina di Carrara.

Between 2010 and 2014, Picchiotti delivered three modern motor yachts from the Vitruvius Explorer Series: the 50m Falco Moscata, formerly Exuma; the 55m Galileo G, and the 73m Nautilus, formerly named Grace E.

The birth of the Leopard class came in 1973 with the construction of the first wooden Leopard, followed by many further models until the first fibreglass Leopard was launched in 1984.

However, in more recent years, with the nautical sector struggling, the Picchiotti shipyards were forced to close and the Picchiotti brand was acquired by the Perini Navi Group in the early 1990s.

The brand was subsequently acquired by The Italian Sea Group in 2021.

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