Francis Lapp – Founder and President of Sunreef Yachts
Sunreef Yachts was established by founder and President Francis Lapp in Gdansk, Poland in 2002. Today the company builds luxury ocean catamarans at two facilities – both historic Gdansk shipyard as well as their new facility in Dubai UAE.
Sunreef Yachts has launched more than 140 models within two decades and count Rafa Nadal and Nico Rosberg among their clientele – both strong ambassadors – as clients. Sunreef Yachts continues its rapid rise.
Early Life and Education
Francis Lapp was born and raised in a small town near Mulhouse in France’s Alsace region. As soon as he could, Francis studied electrical engineering in Paris before starting work for multinational corporations and then founding his own electrical installations company specialized in installations. Through the course of his long and successful business career he held managerial positions at numerous companies before attaining Polish citizenship in 2014. Since 2014 Francis has owned Sunreef Yachts luxury catamaran shipyard. Additionally he owns and leads other enterprises. Francis began sailing through purchasing small racing catamarans before expanding to larger cruising vessels – initially starting with buying racing catamarans before eventually investing in larger cruising catamarans.
Francis Lapp is an electrical engineer and entrepreneur who began his career in electric power and construction. After holding various managerial positions within industry’s leading companies, Lapp made the leap into starting his own firm: HTEP Polska began as a switchgear producer, but quickly evolved into designing and installing electrical, sanitary, and air-conditioning systems for Siemens factories, Coca-Cola factories, Castorama DIY stores, and Carrefour hypermarkets – among many others.
Lapp had an avid passion for sailing, purchasing three cruising catamarans and starting a travel agency specializing in charters in Madagascar. When clients asked him for larger yachts that weren’t readily available on the market, Sunreef Yachts was established – now producing luxury catamarans in Gdansk where Lech Walesa led his strike which resulted in Solidarity movement’s formation and ultimately communism’s collapse in 1989.
Achievement and Honors
Francis Lapp is the visionary behind Sunreef Yachts luxury catamaran shipyard. Hailing from Alsace in France, Francis Lapp has always had a deep-seated passion for oceanography and yachts; due to his dedication and perseverance he has brought this extraordinary success story into fruition with Sunreef Yachts.
In the mid 1990s, he realized that people wanted large, luxurious catamarans but none were readily available on the market. At that moment he had his “light bulb moment” and began building them himself.
Sunreef Yachts was formed when he leased a 6000 square meter space of the Gdansk Shipyard to create Sunreef Yachts, now one of the leading names in yacht manufacturing, employing over 170 people with two manufacturing sites located in Poland and the UAE.
Francis Lapp was born and raised in a small French town called Alsace with limited resources. His mother earned her living sewing clothes, while Francis made his own way in life by working for several multinational corporations and spending two years building hospitals in Saudi Arabia. By late ’80s he launched his own switchgear cubicles company and quickly established himself as a successful entrepreneur.
Lapp developed a passion for sailing during the early 1990s and purchased his first cruising catamarans, then set up Sunreef Charter as a travel agency offering yacht charter services in Madagascar from France.
Sunreef currently boasts over 140 sailing and power yachts in its portfolio, counting tennis icon Rafa Nadal as a client and former F1 Champion Nico Rosberg as an Eco Ambassador for their brand.
Francis Lapp is an electrical engineer and entrepreneur from Alsace in France who owns Sunreef Yachts, which produces luxury multihull yachts. After previously sailing small racing catamarans for several years, Francis Lapp found inspiration to break into building large scale custom multihulls.
Lapp launched his initial business in the late 80s producing switchgear cubicles. When he relocated to Poland in 1992, he established HTEP Polska. Although initially producing electrical equipment, its services soon expanded beyond this and included designing and installing electrical, air conditioning and sanitation systems at large industrial facilities.
Francis Lapp currently resides in Poland but has invested in a shipyard located in Ras al Khaimah, United Arab Emirates as part of his plans for further global expansion. His net worth is currently estimated at over US$500 Million.