Missouri boatbuilder up for sale

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The owner of Black Thunder Powerboats is selling the company and hoping that some "young blood" can come in and keep the nearly 25-year-old manufacturer going.

"It's just age, more than anything. It's going to take a fight to get it going again," Don Jenkins, 78, told Soundings Trade Only. "I was at the Miami show and it seemed that there were a lot of people there and everybody still wants a boat and it looks like it's going to turn around now and start going back the other way.

"It's really disappointing," he said of the decision to sell. "If you could take 20 years off my life, there'd be no way I'd sell it. Sometimes age gets you and there's nothing you can do about that."

Jenkins said the Hannibal, Mo.-based, family-owned company shipped its last boat about 30 days ago and is no longer in production. At one time, he said, Black Thunder Powerboats did more than $6 million in sales annually.

The company prides itself on being a custom builder, adding on its website, "No two Black Thunders are alike, your boat is as original as your ideas."

The new owners, Jenkins hopes, will be go-fast enthusiasts who will "build it even bigger than we have."

The company's website says the company's logo, which it calls a prime asset, the clothing lines, the tooling and the molds are included in the $950,000 asking price.

Also, the 13,000-square-foot manufacturing facility is leasable for $3,500 a month, with an additional 40,000-square-foot building possibly available.

The site mentions "very capable and trusted employees that ... would be a very important asset to continue the business," although it adds that the molds and equipment can be moved to another U.S. location or shipped overseas.

"It's not a business that should end. It's a business that some young blood should get in and move on with," Jenkins said. "It's a wonderful business."

For information, call (573) 795-2222.

— Beth Rosenberg



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