A Taiwanese yacht builder is blaming a competitor, a German shipowner and one of its general cargoships for a fire that saw more than $20m in yachts go up in flames on a trans-Pacific voyage last year.

Alexander Marine and Alexander Marine USA sued in the US federal court for the Southern District of Florida seeking damages from a litany of parties involved in stowing and shipping five yachts on top of cargo holds aboard the 12,657-dwt BBC Virginia (built 2010).