YATCO’s Broker of the Month series examines the influences and catalysts that brought these brokers into the wonderful world of yachting, who influenced them, and what they seek to change in the industry.
Corrado Di Majo is the CEO of Equinoxe, a world-class yacht brokerage based in Italy by Corradowith Alessandro Ussi in 1986.
Featuring Corrado Di Majo, CEO of Equinoxe
How did you get into yachting?
Sailing has been a long-life passion for me. I began sailing at 10 years old and by the time I was 23, I was the youngest ever Italian skipper to complete the Ostar single-handed transatlantic race from England to the US, on an 11m boat. A year later, I was the youngest Italian skipper to compete in the crewed Whitbread Round the World Race, aboard B&B Italia.
In 1985, I took part on Tuscany/Guia 4 in the Brooklyn Cup two-handed race from Portofino to New York. I have done plenty of other ocean crossings as well as a long list of offshore races. I raced again around the world on Gatorade in 1989 and I was the project manager of Brooksfield in the Volvo Ocean Race in 1993.
I felt I did not really have a choice about turning my passion into a career and that became a reality when I got to know Alessandro Ussi in 1986. We opened Equinoxe Yachts that year and are still working together more than 35 years later!
Is there anyone you feel has influenced you – someone from the industry that you look up to? If so, why?
Several people have influenced my career both on a human and professional level. Doing this type of job means constant interaction and growing together. However, I think the person I owe most to is Alessandro Ussi, who I have worked closely with for over 35 years. Incredibly well qualified and professional, Alessandro really is a touchstone for the entire industry. His experience is just incomparable with over 4,000 charter contracts signed and an enormous number of motor and sailing yacht sales to his credit. I feel that interacting and working with him constantly has helped me grow to an incredible extent.
What is your favorite thing about the yachting industry – and what would you like to change?
My favorite thing is being able to make our history, our nautical culture and the professional skills we have built up over the years, available to our clients. The fact that we can help any sea lover make their lifelong dream come true by buying the perfect yacht to enjoy with their loved ones, is a unique pleasure and privilege. I feel genuinely fortunate because yachts represent happiness, lightness, free time spent with loved ones, and a dream come true. And it is wonderful to be by people’s side at such happy times.
What I might change right now is the over-arching power of the web. Let me explain, there is no doubt the internet is an incredibly valuable tool, hugely important and efficient. We saw that very clearly during lockdown. However, I do also think that it should not replace human relationships and work on the ground. It is only by meeting people and personally living in this world (i.e. not just online) that you can make the leap in quality and offer your clients the best service.
What are some of the challenges you come across at work, and how do you approach them?
To partly repeat myself, we are now so used to living life in front of a screen that it is tough to find collaborators and crews with nautical skills and solid knowledge built up on the ground. The web may be irreplaceable, but it does have its limits.
The big issue now is that it is so easy for anyone at all to put a boat up for sale, even though they may not be actual professionals or completely on the level.
Tell us about your greatest accomplishment.
That would be any large yacht sale during which I have developed a relationship with the owner centered around a mutual passion for the sea! When the conversation is fueled by an unstoppable passion for the sea, you realize you are speaking the same language and everything else just fades into the background.
So, I suppose I could say that having the same loyal clients for over 35 years is my greatest accomplishment!