Metal Shark acquires Horizon Shipbuilding

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A steel tug built by Horizon Shipbuilding on the 660-ton Travelift at Metal Shark’s newly-acquired Alabama Shipyard

A steel tug built by Horizon Shipbuilding on the 660-ton Travelift at Metal Shark’s newly-acquired Alabama Shipyard

With approval from the U.S. Bankruptcy Court Southern District of Alabama on June 5, Louisiana-based shipbuilder Metal Shark has acquired the assets of Alabama-based Horizon Shipbuilding.

“We are thrilled to acquire the assets of Horizon, which will greatly increase our shipbuilding capability and capacity,” said Metal Shark’s CEO Chris Allard in a statement. “This acquisition will dramatically expand Metal Shark, as we add an impressive Alabama facility to our growing portfolio of shipyards and leverage Horizon’s expertise in the construction of steel vessels.”

Metal Shark assumes ownership of a 35-acre shipbuilding facility in the Mobile Bay region with separate east and west yards both fronting a dredged deep-water inlet and is minutes from the Intracoastal Waterway with direct access to the Gulf of Mexico.

The facility has nine assembly buildings, a 660-ton Travelift, multiple cranes, CNC plasma cutters, welders and other equipment to support construction of steel and aluminum vessels up to 300 feet long and 1,500 tons launch weight.

“As we add steel vessels to our already broad range of aluminum craft, we will offer everything from a sixteen-foot aluminum skiff to steel vessels up to 300 feet and virtually everything in between, making the diversity of Metal Sharks’ portfolio truly unmatched in the industry,” said Allard.

“Additionally, our Alabama yard’s complete refit and repair services will appeal to customers throughout the Gulf, and also those in the South Florida and Caribbean yachting community. These clients will benefit from an accessible and modern facility with some of the most competitive labor rates in the nation.”

Since filing for bankruptcy protection under Chapter 11 in October 2017, Horizon has continued to operate under the direction of company CEO Travis R. Short. With the acquisition, Short will join Metal Shark as executive vice president.

“Over his part 20-plus years with Horizon, Travis has done an outstanding job of building and maintaining relationships with customers across multiple sectors,” said Allard. “He is well liked and respected; he brings great shipbuilding knowledge and insight and we’re happy to welcome him to Metal Shark.”

Added Short, “After a long run at Horizon, I am pleased to enter this next phase by joining this team and by bringing out Alabama yard into the Metal Shark family. We are excited to add the technology, engineering and processes that have set Metal Shark apart in the industry.”

The acquisition of Horizon is the latest in a series of expansion moves by Metal Shark. In 2014, the company opened its 25-acre Franklin, La., yard that produces aluminum boats up to 200 feet long including passenger and military vessels. The most recent Franklin expansion includes a 220 foot by 80-foot large vessel assembly building and 8,000 square foot office building. 


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