‘It has been quite a journey,’ Quentin Bargate says, recalling the history of the firm he founded 15 years ago. The trained maritime lawyer leveraged his superyacht experience to expand his role as a trusted advisor.
‘Over time, the company evolved into the modern organisation it is today, led by clients and their requirements,’ he tells Spear’s. ‘Alongside the transactional aspects of my superyacht work, I have continued to deal with high value and large litigation and arbitration matters, and continue to be referred work by my former colleagues at Simmons & Simmons.’
‘The company is structured to ensure that our advice is always director-led and cost effective,’ he says. ‘The company’s reputation in assisting with the broader luxury asset classes, such as HNW property and fine art, continues to expand and impress. It’s an approach that is favoured by a clientele including family offices and high-profile UHNWs, whose privacy is always key among its practice. Business over the last year has continued on an upward trajectory.’
‘This year has been very eventful,’ says Bargate, noting the formation of the new residential property department, and the conversion of the company in to an ABS (Alternative Business Structure) which allows Bargate Murray to undertake non legal work. ‘We have seen a flood of new superyacht work, including some very large projects in Dutch yards. We are also continuing our recruitment of high-quality advisors, and are also exceptionally busy with dispute resolution – we continue to handle complex and novel cases, mainly, but not exclusively in the maritime and superyacht sphere.’ Bargate has been particularly busy advising clients about Brexit and other regulatory changes on their businesses and assets. Bargate is also noticing a trend in regulatory compliance, and new ways of permitting limited commercial usage of private yachts. ‘There is also a change in regulatory framework and how flag states are trying to make a positive impact by promoting the adoption of green technologies on superyachts,’ he adds.
Bargate is one of the most experienced and well-known names in the yacht sector. ‘I have expertise in a wide range of projects, from construction of large new build yachts, to their sale and purchase, as well as providing operational advice,’ he says. ‘I am also involved in a number of high value maritime arbitrations and commercial disputes and I am a member of The Baltic Exchange, The Maritime Authority of the Cayman Islands yacht committee, The London Maritime Arbitrators Association (LMAA), the Nautical Institute and the Royal Thames Yacht Club. I also accept appointments as an arbitrator and mediator.’