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Boatbuilders make news in a variety of ways, among them by debuting new models and announcing business expansions or quarterly financial results.

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Cobra Marine MR F300 BT

You must compete with engine and wind noise if you want to carry on a cell phone conversation while under way. Cobra Marine’s MR F300 BT waterproof handset with Bluetooth wireless technology transmits phone calls loud and clear, according to the company. (Cobra’s product recently won a DAME Category Winner award at the 2008 Marine…more

IBBI gives out supplier awards

The Independent Boat Builders Inc. handed out awards last week during the group’s annual purchasing conference in St. Louis. Supplier of the Year awards went to Alcan Baltek, GEM Products, and Universal Products. The companies were chosen by IBBI members for their product quality, customer service, delivery, technical service, accurate invoicing, and warranty administration. IBBI also…more

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SLIDESHOW: Q&A with Mirage founder Ken Fickett

Ken Fickett got his start when his mentor — Miami builder Raleigh Stapleton — loaded a truck with mat, resin, acetone and catalyst, and told a young Fickett, “I don’t care where you take it, just go and start your own business.” The directive was part altruism, part anger, but it set Fickett on a…more

Hard times continue for manufacturers

The downturn in the marine industry continues as two more companies react to the changing marketplace. MasterCraft Boat Co., of Vonore, Tenn., laid off a third of its work force last week, reducing its number of employees to 200. This compares to about 570 employees a year ago, which was a record year for MasterCraft…more

Three manufacturers announce cutbacks

Boatbuilders continue to adjust to slumping economic conditions, with several announcing layoffs or furloughs to meet the lower demand for boats. Here’s a roundup of recent announcements. Neodesha, Kan.-based Cobalt Boats today announced the layoff of 30 employees because of the poor economy. “It is very difficult to see fellow associates leave our company. Our…more

Trumpy back to building yachts

The Trumpy name is making a comeback after a 35-year hiatus. Trumpy Yachts, now headed by former Alden Yachts executive Jim Ewing, is introducing the Trumpy 63 Flush Deck Motor Yacht, to be built by Vicem Yachts. “The Trumpy 63 has been designed from original Trumpy drawings but enhanced with modern yacht systems, equipment and…more

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Retiring Zodiac president honored by colleagues

MIAMI BEACH — J.J. Marie, longtime president of Zodiac of North America, was toasted by friends and colleagues Thursday at the Miami International Boat Show, in anticipation of his retirement at the end of the month. When he started with the company, Zodiac was a “little rubber boat manufacturer,” Marie told the crowd of more…more

MasterCraft offering buyer incentives on new MC 300

MasterCraft launched a new “Luxury Retail Promotion” to personalize the buying experience for potential buyers of its newest boat, the MasterCraft 300, which was unveiled this week at the Miami International Boat Show. Once qualified, top MC 300 prospects will be treated to an all-expenses-paid trip to MasterCraft world headquarters in Knoxville, Tenn. The trip…more

Marvair unveils new air handlers

Marvair of Cordele, Ga., is introducing its new line of chilled-water air handlers during the Miami International Boat Show. The air handlers accompany Marvair’s line of marine chillers. The line of air handlers is available in five sizes with capacities from 6,000 to 24,000 BTU/H. The heart of the air handler is the air mover,…more

Jeppesen holding chart-update contest at Miami show

Jeppesen Marine is hosting a contest at this week’s Miami International Boat Show to demonstrate the importance of updating electronic nautical charts. The company will present a side-by-side comparison of the same chart area from one release to the next. Each day, the visitor who identifies the most changes will receive a Club Jeppesen Marine…more

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