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Dealers and Distributors

This week’s roundup of dealers and distributors includes news from Baja Marine and Helmut’s Marine Service.

Baja Marine signed award-winning Top Notch Marine, located on Florida’s Atlantic Coast, to represent Pro-Line Boats.

Top Notch Marine, with locations in Melbourne, Fort Pierce and Pompano Beach coming soon, is now offering the full line of high-quality, high-value Pro-Line fishing boats from 20 to 32 feet.

“We already have received our first 2013 models and have many more on order,” Top Notch Marine owner Jim Sabia, who founded the dealership in 1987, said in a statement. “We will soon be expanding to a third location in South Florida, and we’re looking forward to offering Pro-Line Boats there, as well. If you enjoy boating anywhere from Daytona Beach to Miami, Top Notch Marine is the place to get your new Pro-Line.”

Baja Marine vice president Nick Miller said that rather than signing as many dealers as possible for its Pro-Line, Baja, Donzi and Fountain brands, the company’s goal is to find dealers who will become long-term business partners.

“Jim Sabia and his team at Top Notch Marine have the reputation, the drive, the skills and the commitment we need to help us continue this amazing growth spurt we are now experiencing and to aid Pro-Line in continuing its heritage as the leader in family fishing boats,” Miller said in a statement. “We are proud to welcome them to the Pro-Line family.”

Click here for the full release.

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Helmut’s Marine Service, of San Rafael, Calif., is celebrating its 25th year of business as a Volvo Penta dealer this month.

“We congratulate the superb team at Helmut’s for their successful achievement of a quarter-century of business,” Volvo Penta Region Americas president Ron Huibers said in a statement. “As our power center in California, Helmut’s has established an unmatched reputation as an industry leader and has played a vital role in Volvo Penta’s success on the West Coast over the years.”

Helmut’s was founded in March 1988 by Helmut Ahollinger and Lieselotte (Lisa) Ahollinger-George as a Volvo Penta dealership serving the San Francisco area. Five years later, the company moved to its current waterfront location on the San Rafael canal. It became a Volvo Penta Power Center under a pilot program in 1999.

Today, Helmut’s has grown to include eight docks, a Travelift, two warehouses for engines and parts, a workshop and offices, with a 14-person work force, including a service team of five. As a power center, the company provides engines, parts and technical support to dealers in California, Utah, Nevada, Arizona, New Mexico, Hawaii and Guam. Helmut’s also directly services recreational and commercial vessels in the San Francisco area.

“We pride ourselves on always going the extra mile,” company president Helmut Ahollinger in a statement. “Our guiding principle is always to treat our customer as we would treat our best friend.”

Click here for the full release.



Volvo Penta Reports Q4, FY22 Results

Net sales of $470 million for the quarter were a 33% increase compared to the prior year period.


DEALERS: Are You Improving the Service Experience?

Our monthly Pulse Report survey asks this and other questions about your dealership. Take the survey here.


NMRA Sets Scholarship Deadline

Students pursuing education in the marine trades can apply for the National Marine Representatives Association awards until April 1.


Marine Products Reports Record Q4

The builder of Chaparral and Robalo boats reported net sales were up 42% for the quarter and 28% for fiscal year 2022.


Shurhold Appoints COO

Forrest Ferrari has years of management, business development, IT and quality-assurance experience.


RBFF, Pure Fishing Partner for a First Catch Center

Pure Fishing will equip a mobile trailer with tackle and gear to bring fishing experiences to areas of South Carolina where participation is low.


An Oft-Overlooked Sales Opportunity

A recent report from the Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation showed that women comprise 37% of all anglers. If you haven’t tapped this segment, you’re missing out.

1. 2023 new boat retail outlook

Too Many High-Priced Boats

To wrap up 2022, marine retailers reported lower demand, expressed more negative sentiment and voiced concerns about rising inventory. Boat prices and the economy remained top of mind for dealers in December.

Soundings Nov 2022

New-Boat Registrations Continue to Slide

As the gaudy sales figures from the pandemic continue to return to more realistic numbers, the main segments of the recreational boating industry saw new-model registrations of 4,421 in November, a 30.3% drop from 6,340 during the same time in 2021. .