Aussie boatbuilder Mustang purchased

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Australia's Mustang Marine has been sold to a "prominent Gold Coast businessman," according to a statement from the company's voluntary administrators.

"Mustang had been investing heavily in research and development and was in the process of launching a number of new boats. However, the effects of the global economic crisis weighed heavily on Mustang's financial performance during 2009, and the business was further hampered by a fire at a critical supplier earlier this year," said administrator Cliff Sanderson, in a statement.

"As a result Mustang was unable to fully implement its strategy, resulting in our appointment in March," he added.

The purchaser plans to reassess Mustang's business strategy and then roll out the new range of boats over the next year. Mustang's manufacturing facility will be relocated but will remain on the Gold Coast, according to the administrators, who did not name the buyer.

Some media reports from Australia have speculated that Bill Barry-Cotter, CEO of Maritimo, has acquired the assets of Mustang Marine. Entrepreneur Steve Searle has been named as a possible partner with Barry-Cotter in the venture.

The Mustang brand was founded in Australia in 1974 and became the country's second largest boatbuilder and retailer.

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