Four days ago, sanctioned Russian billionaire Alexei Mordashov’s $500 million vessel Nord went dark in the Indian Ocean en route to Cape Town, South Africa. With AIS transponders turned off, no information on her location or destination is available. The bigger question is whether Nord motoryacht will even go to Cape Town after the opposition it received from authorities. Esysman SuperYachts has brought forward some inside news from an unverified source suggesting that the 464-feet Nord megayacht applied for birth at Victoria and Alfred Waterfront in Cape Town.
Mordashov’s $500 million vessel was apparently denied entry, citing reasons like lack of space. The real deal, however, is not lack of space but security reasons concerning the Nord yacht.
South Africa is home to a sizeable Ukrainian community that puts the mammoth at risk of damage or vandalism. Who can forget the instance when no less than 1,000 Dutch locals threatened Jeff Bezos’s Y721 with rotten eggs? The newly built $500 million megayacht required dismantling a historic bridge to pass through to the irk of locals. The Nord motoryacht is undoubtedly a symbol of the wealth of one of Russia’s richest men, $21.4 billion worth Alexei Mordashov.
Having the 15th largest yacht in the world belonging to a sanctioned oligarch in open view in the marina would present a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to even some scores if this info is valid.
Interestingly, Cape Town officials urged the government not to offer refuge to Mordashov’s $500 million mammoth. Despite opposition from the Mayor and Premier of Cape town, President Cyril Ramaphosa said he saw “no reason” to comply with Western sanctions. “South Africa has no legal obligation to abide by sanctions imposed by the US and EU,” Vincent Magwenya told reporters.