Sinot rejects media claims Bill Gates commissioned plans for hydrogen superyacht


Bill Gates pictured in 2014. (credit Gindomarlo)

Dutch yacht designer, Sinot, has rebutted claims that blueprints for its 112-metre hydrogen-fuelled concept yacht, Aqua, have been bought by Bill Gates. A number of articles have appeared over recent days reporting the sale of the concept, which was unveiled at last year’s Monaco Yacht Show. The reported purchase would be a world-first in the construction of hydrogen-fuelled yachts.

In a statement Sinot said: “In recent days, various articles have appeared in international media, stating that Sinot Yacht Architecture & Design sold its concept Aqua to Bill Gates. These articles are factually incorrect. Sinot Yacht Architecture & Design wants therefore to make the following clear:

  • The hydrogen concept Aqua is not linked to Mr Gates (or his representatives) in any form or manner
  • Sinot Yacht Architecture & Design has no business relationship with Mr. Gates
  • Aqua is a concept under development and has not been sold to Mr. Gates
  • Unfortunately, all ‘information’ in these recent articles is factually incorrect.

Sinot concluded, “Aqua is a concept showed in Monaco, meant to build a better future and inspire clients and the industry. We invite any visionary client to show their interest! We highly appreciate all articles written on this subject to be corrected according to the above.

Gates’s commitment to exploring green technology

It had been reported that the commissioning of the hydrogen-fuelled superyacht was further confirmation of Gates’ commitment to exploring green technology and alternative fuels. He is an investor in Heliogen, a California start-up that uses smart software to control multiple mirrors that focus the sun’s rays to generate extreme heat. Gates said last year: “By investing in energy innovations, we can build on the progress we’ve made deploying current technology like renewables, which will help accelerate the transition from fossil fuels to a future of reliable and affordable carbon-free electricity. We need big breakthroughs in technologies that will allow us to supply the power grid with clean energy even during windless days, cloudy weather, and night-time.”

In the region of £500m

The project was reported by The Sunday Telegraph to cost in the region of £500m and would require the construction of hydrogen refuelling infrastructure at the vessel’s home port. Gates’s liking for chartering superyachts has been reported widely and documented by numerous paparazzi shots of the Gates family aboard superyachts in the Mediterranean, but he has never owned one of his own.

The Gates Foundation did not comment and directed enquiries to Gates Venture PLC, the Microsoft co-founder’s investment vehicle, but it has so far not responded to requests for comment.

Meanwhile, more details about the Aqua project were revealed by Simon Brealey, principal for Mechanical Engineering with Lateral Naval Architects, at Superyacht Investor’s London 2020 conference.

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