BananaBelt Boats & Yachts announced a major expansion and a name change.
The Anacortes, Wash.-based brokerage said it will expand its dry-land facility to 6 acres from 1.5, allowing it to accommodate 140 motoryachts for sale in one location.
Groundbreaking on the new facility is scheduled to start Sept. 15, and the company said the work should be completed by early October.
BananaBelt said it is adding staff in line with the expansion — four new brokers and two service staff to serve the new customer base. It also recently changed its name to BananaBelt Boats & Yachts from BananaBelt Boats to better reflect and emphasize the company’s target market of motoryachts from 28 to 70 feet.
“It’s a market-driven expansion,” company owner Amy Ripley Thornton said in a statement. “Currently we can accommodate only 40 yachts, and on a weekly basis we have to turn away four to five vessels.
“This expansion will allow us to change that and serve those boat owners who understand the value and benefits of showing their yachts in our dry-land facility. Because when your boat is out of the water you no longer need to worry about losing bottom paint or zincs, this means lower costs while your vessel is up for sale. It’s also much less expensive to store a boat out of the water than in water, and more environmentally friendly, too.”
Like the current sales facility, the expansion will have stairs and a walkway around all of the boats that allows buyers easy access on and around them. Additionally, from this perspective, buyers can see the top side and bottom of each boat, something that is not possible when the boats are in the water.
“Being able to show buyers the hull shape and condition of a vessel’s bottom allows us to instill more confidence in prospective buyers,” Thornton said.