About Us

The Founder(s)

Storm Logo

StormYachts was established in 2010 by Rob van Kesteren and Corné Knippels, two Dutchmen with long experience in boatbuilding and maintenance acquired on over a hundred luxury yachts. They are in the fortunate position to be able to build motoryachts from a financially independent foundation and this is the principle behind everything they think and do. Not being distracted by sales pressure or unrealistic marketing goals, StormYachts has complete freedom to go off the beaten path and focus on its clients. Van Kesteren and Knippels have also retained full control of every aspect of development, construction and marketing.

Corné Knippels

Corné has been active in the luxury yacht building sector since 2000, as a Co-owner of an established and well-known Dutch yacht builder. Under his guidance, this local player developed into a leading yard with an international network that delivered up to ten yachts a year. Corné was responsible for the development and sale of more than 100 new yachts over his active years at this yard. He also sold nearly as many pre-owned boats, many of which first had a refit under his supervision.

Corné is respected for his engineering insight, technical knowledge, broad experience in maintenance and the fact that he sails onboard every yacht (new or pre-owned) he delivers. His broad expertise, gathered from over a decade of boat-building practice, is meticulously applied during the design trajectory and building process. All Storm owners are therefore assured of safety and comfort, whether in the marina or at sea, at anchor or in more extreme weather conditions.

Why choose a Storm yacht?

StormYachts offers her clients three clearly identifiable benefits, namely

  1. Optimal efficiency resulting in a fuel consumption of just one litre per hour at eight knots.
  2. The highest level of comfort thanks to the round-bilged hull and special bow shape.
  3. A combination of both benefits over a speed range from between 8 and 24 knots.

StormYachts only brings yachts on to the market that will stand out from the existing offer for a long time to come. As well as featuring a genuinely eye-catching design, this also requires ensuring that efficiency and comfort are major focal points from the start of the development stage. These aspects play a vital role in ensuring a superior sailing performance and a degree of distinction that stands the test of time.

The newly developed and innovative FDHF hull by Van Oossanen Naval Architects has been proven in practice to provide a remarkable performance and makes a major contribution to our proposition.

A passion for yachts

“Our careers made us passionate about yachts and even more passionate about the lack of substance in the motoryacht sector,” says Rob. “We don’t believe that every owner in the 15 to 30-metre range is content to cruise on motoryachts that all look so similar. This is why we decided to bring onto the market a design that people would either love or hate.

“If you want something similar you won’t find it because a Storm yacht is beyond the mainstream. Our role is to give people the reasons they need to justify the decision to follow their heart. In other words, we are not selling yachts but helping people to buy one.”

A unique approach

The StormYachts motto is ‘RED’: Remarkable – Efficient – Dutch – It stands for both the yachts we build and the way we are organised. Storm products are developed according to this philosophy and our yard functions in this way too, ensuring that costs are kept low and the focus is on creating special boats.

RED also applies to the unique way that the company is run by its founders Rob van Kesteren and Corné Knippels. Together they have rich experience of boatbuilding and maintenance acquired on over 100 luxury yachts. They set up StormYachts to share their vision on how motoryachts should look with owners seeking something outside the box.


The robust and distinctive lines of all the Storm yachts come from the boards of the renowned superyacht designer Frank Laupman and his team at Omega Architects. Founded in 1995, this multi-disciplinary agency for architectural design, interior design and yacht design is a member of The Royal Institute of Dutch Architects. Omega builds yachts for various shipyards in Holland, Turkey and Italy and has designed more than 60 exteriors and 45 interiors.


The ‘brains’ behind the revolutionary underwater body that is an integral part of the success of all Storm designs is Van Oossanen Naval Architects. A dedicated team of architects, yacht designers, hydrodynamics engineers and maritime consultants work at this leading edge company. The benefits are to be seen in the Fast Displacement Hull Form (FDHF), which offers up to twenty percent higher efficiency at low and high speeds, low fuel consumption and enhanced sailing comfort.

The FDHF has taken twenty years to develop and the first example of this innovative hull in action can be seen on the recently launched 65-metre Heesen superyacht Galactica Star. The first Storm yacht is only the second vessel in the world to feature this impressive new concept.


Frank’s works regularly wins major awards, including recently for Galactica Star (the first example of the FDHF) and his rich experience adds value to the overall Storm concept. The architects at Omega have taken the Fast Displacement Hull Form and incorporated the concept into a slender hull with a slightly negatively inclined plumb bow.

Distinctive lines have been blended with a remarkable superstructure to create a profile that also offers ample space for cruising in considerable comfort. Frank’s relaxing interior design is intended for people who recognise that more interior space enhances the onboard experience.It is a template upon which you can create your own Storm in terms of style and layout.


Pieter van Oossanen PhD, MSc naval architect is a legend of the naval architecture world. He was responsible for all of the sailing yacht projects carried out at the famous Dutch maritime research institute MARIN from 1977 to 1989, including the development of the winged keel for Australia II in 1983. These projects and the decades of tank testing that have followed give an enormous authority and impetus to the StormYachts range.

After an incredibly successful career that included some of the world’s most renowned yachts, Pieter recently handed over the helm of his company to his son Perry van Oossanen BSc and Niels Moerke MSc. Naval Architects continues to lead the way in large cruising and racing yachts, including the new generation of J-Class sailing yachts and motoryacht brands such as Mulder and Heesen.