Fractional Ownership: SaaS Platform Development for Boat Owners
Published on March 10, 2020 • by Mrinal Khullar Updated on June 30, 2023 • 9 min Read
Luxurious items come at a price. A price, that is often a multiple of our annual savings. And, that is one reason, we all dream to own it. What if, a business model allows you to buy a part of it and treat it like your personal property? You can use it, personalize it and pay just a portion of the actual cost!!
Businesses across the globe have come forward for similar workflows where the original owners can share their properties with similar users who are ready to use the assets for a lower price. As a result of multiple ownership, the asset can be utilized throughout the year with every owner being lesser burdened for the charges.
But then, of course, multiple ownership implies more complications at managing things and keeping a track of every user.
At The Brihaspati Infotech, our expert WordPress developers recently developed a SaaS platform for Fractional Yacht Ownership. The custom-designed Software is a complete solution meant for the boat syndicates, owners and every participant in the system.
The current blog discusses SaaS website development and how it helped us automate Fractional Boat Ownership in a way organized manner.
Fractional Yacht Ownership: Understanding the conventional Business Model
As a Fractional owner, you almost own the boat, making huge profits, taking care of the maintenance and can take a ride like your personal convenience.
Owners can book the boat in advance for up to the next couple of months. The trip tenure is kept transparent for all the owners so that their bookings don’t overlap with existing ones. Similarly, the charges for every trip is fixed and managed in a centralized manner. Having said that, it is easy to recognize how difficult it is to manage all these on pen and paper.
The complex management turns intense when it involves several boats with thousands of distributed owners. That is where our client wanted a SaaS platform for boat owners.
Our custom designed SaaS application offers a complete platform that resolves all the issues right on the web. The boat owners can list their boats on the marketplace either by themselves, the customers can buy shares, and the syndicates can run their business like never before.
Applying for a boat partnership turns that easy!!
Need for SaaS development
The client wanted an online solution to manage the boat owners, their subordinates, manage bookings, and keep a track of all the bookings in the coming times. That was easier said than done. We had the following features to implement
Club owner’s ability to control the role permissions
A transparent module to display the bookings
Cash flow at the core for the club owners
Ability to add more Boat owners and shareholders
Automate surge in charge on special occasions
At this, we suggested an RBAC model for this SaaS platform. We implemented multiple Admin Roles with different permissions at every level:
Boat Syndicate: Add boat owners, Set daily charges
Shareholders: Manage Bookings, Pay for the partnership
SaaS application development for managing Fractional Yacht Ownership
As a complete SaaS platform, the Yacht Ownership Software had to work on various parts. We started with the basics of the business model. That is, adding Fractional Owners.
Adding Fractional Owners
The Boatowner can share equity parts between his customers. The SaaS platform for Fractional ownership allows the Boat owners to declare a customer as “Shareholder”. We have pre-defined the admin permissions to the role, for minimizing the burden of boat owners at re-declaring customer’s access to data. With that, the customer receives all the permissions to arrange bookings.
The customer can request via the online portal. The portal accepts personal details and sends a mail to the boat owner. Once accepted, the customer can pay for the share and avail themselves with the benefits.
Here, we have set 600 monthly points and 840 wild card points for the original boat owners. The points assigned are distributed among the shareholders as per their share. That is, a 1/3 fractional owner receives one-third of the points both from the monthly points as well as wild card points. The software automatically assigns the partner with 200 monthly points and 280 wild card points.
Something that sets our software ahead among the available Fractional ownership management solutions in the market, is the flexibility at managing the distributions. The boat owners have the freedom to customize the partnership as in multiples of pre-defined equity shares.
For example, your boat which is available in ⅓ equity parts can be distributed as ⅓ to first customer and ⅔ to the next. Accordingly, the monthly and Wild card allowances are assigned to the shareholders. That is, while one partner is eligible for 200 monthly points and 280 Wild card points, the other is availed the rest 400 monthly points with 560 Wild Card points.
Boat owners can manage similar distributions to encourage more frequent customers.
Automating the booking limitations with custom SaaS application
One of the major reasons to get this platform designed was to automate a majority of calculations. Like, the boat syndicate had to keep a track of all the boat owners, their trips and their annual booking limitations. Exceeding which, the boat owners are liable to pay the surcharges.
Every time, the boat owner asks for a booking, the syndicate has to track the number of points used from the monthly cards as well as the Wild card. Being said that every syndicate comprises of several boat owners, a simple booking turns out to be a tedious task for the syndicate.
We jotted down the work architecture, which helped in organizing the cash flow between the roles. The permitted points are utilized as per the day they make a booking. Our SaaS platform for Fractional ownership is ready for that.
Using Monthly card
With monthly cards, the fractional owners can book for the next two months. The custom-designed calendar locks those dates from further bookings. Being centrally designed, the syndicate, the boat owner, and all the fractional owners are on the same page with the boat rentals for the forthcoming calendar months.
We have set different charges based on the booking day. If a shareholder books a boat on a Sunday, the charges are 50 points per day. The Shareholder is debited by 50 points from his available 200 points leaving him with 150 points for the rest of the month.
Apparently, as the shareholders are under the original boat owners, similar deductions have to reflect here too. That is, the same 50 points had to be deducted from the original boat owner’s account.
Using Wild Card
We have implemented a similar model for Wild card bookings. The shareholders can use the points to pre-book boats for the next 12 months. Deep down, this would have affected the monthly booking allowances for the boat owners. At this, we further customized the point deduction system that reduced the gap between both the booking systems.
Taking the same example, supposedly a customer books the boat for a Sunday via Wild Card, the software deducts the same 50 points from the Wild card quota. Added to that, the same number of points are deducted from the monthly quota for the boat owners and the shareholder alike. With that, the boat owner can book the vessel much before two months from the actual date, without exceeding the monthly allowed quota of 600 points.
Delivering a complete centralized SaaS solution for every admin role made it easier. Every deduction at the shareholder’s account was reflected in the Original boat owner’s account. Seemingly, the syndicates can now keep a track of every point availed to the boat owners and their subordinates. That makes the entire system of boat rental more transparent for every role.
Can the shareholders book the boats for free?
What is the point of being an owner if you can’t take a free ride? That is an obvious question. The software charges the boat owners and the shareholders for every booking, with a price surge on weekends and public holidays. To encourage the boat owners, we have added the feature where they can book the boats for free.
The software unlocks a free booking mode for available dates just before 48 hours of the said day. The software doesn’t charge the boat owners for this ride allowing the shareholders to make bookings without spending a penny.
Stripe payment gateway integration
Managing the payments at multiple levels was surely the center of this SaaS platform. The fractional owners need to buy shares from boat owners, which is a one-time purchase. The boat owners have to pay annual subscription charges, plus occasional payments to gain additional points.
At this, we wanted a robust payment gateway that can handle nearly everything- large amounts, scheduled subscription charges, and random payments. Stripe was the name that can tick all the right boxes. The boat owners can pay their annual subscription charges per their will. Moreover, they can make online payments for exceeding the monthly points.
Our experience with SaaS platform development
As a leading SaaS development company, The Brihaspati Infotech has delivered several custom-designed solutions in its past 10 years. We have been regularly approached for tools that are designed to meet the custom needs of a high degree. Our expert developers have fulfilled such needs to perfection.
We have recently talked about a Raspberry IoT case-study where the software renders a complete SaaS platform for various admin roles. Much similar to our current project, the platform revolved around custom business needs with locker bookings at the center.
Summing it up
A custom SaaS application development serves every participant in the chain- be it the owner or a customer. Above all, it necessarily meets the voids offered by ready-made tools in terms of understanding the business needs.
While the solution we created here, specifically serves the fractional ownership for boats, it can easily fit in other business models where partnered ownership is a thing. We can customize that for you.
If your business model also seeks a similar software that deals with multiple roles and permissions, you can contact us.