Quick Hits: December 1, 2020


Freedom Boat Club has named its 250th location in Delran, N.J., slated to open next spring as the first Freedom franchise in the Philadelphia metro area. Its owners — Bev, Josh and Tom Rosella — run and manage eight other Freedom Boat Club spots in Delaware, southern New Jersey and New York’s Hudson River Valley. “We are thrilled to be part of such an important milestone for Freedom Boat Club,” said Bev Rosella in a statement. “When we opened our first location, we hoped that we could create an experience for our members that would allow them to have lifelong memories on the water… [and] we look forward to meeting new boaters in the Philadelphia area.” According to parent company Brunswick Corp., Freedom’s franchises have grown substantially since May of 2019 from 170 to 250 locations across 31 states, Canada and Europe. “Freedom continues to exceed our growth expectations and reach new heights. I remain encouraged and excited about our continued momentum as we head into 2021,” said Freedom Boat Club network president Cecil Cohn. 

ShoreMaster LLC, which merged with HydroHoist LLC last year, has acquired Fort Lauderdale, Fla.-based Neptune Boat Lifts Inc., giving the company a presence in saltwater marine markets and the ability to accommodate all boat types, sizes and applications. “Neptune is a leading brand in the saltwater lift market, one of the most important and fastest-growing markets in the industry,” said ShoreMaster CEO Don Hurley in a statement. The addition of Neptune, and the company’s dealer network, allows ShoreMaster to expand in Florida and other U.S. markets, as well as provide new product offerings to its existing dealers, said Hurley. 

Julie Balzano has joined MarineMax as brand marketing manager. Balzano has held marketing roles with Young & Rubicam, Enterprise Florida and was senior director of the National Marine Manufacturers Association’s export and workforce program development for the last eight years. She will be tasked with directing marketing for Aquila, Azimut, Galeon as well as MarineMax Vacations. "I look forward to continuing my career in recreational boating here at MarineMax," said Balzano in a statement. "Boating is a beautiful outdoor pastime for our country and an important economic driver, employing many Americans. I'm thankful to be a part of this dynamic company and to contribute in my small way of supporting the boating lifestyle." "We are thrilled to welcome Julie to our team,” said director of marketing Abbey Heimensen. “Her depth of experience makes her the perfect candidate. We look forward to learning a lot from Julie as she thrives in her new role." 

More people bought fishing licenses in Arkansas last summer than in the past, and even repeat license holders fished more often than usual, according to a study that polled 1,600 license holders. Results indicated that 98 percent of respondents said fishing was at least a somewhat safe activity during the activity, Arkansas Game and Fish Commission’s Fisheries Division biologist Jessica Feltz told the Hot Springs Village Voice. “We are just moving forward with discussions on how we can retain these new anglers and anglers who have rediscovered fishing,” Feltz told the newspaper. The study was part of a larger national study by Louisiana State University on the pandemic’s effects on fishing licenses.


MarineMax Posts Record Q2

Coming off its most profitable fourth quarter, first quarter and fiscal year, the company continued to roll with a 70 percent increase in revenue.

MMTA Lands State Grant

Massachusetts Marine Trades Association will use the $20,000 recovery grant to promote its “Stay Local Boat MA” program.

Hundreds Stream ABC

Topics of discussion during Day One of NMMA’s virtual American Boating Congress included policy updates, infrastructure, the global supply chain and more.

Next Stop, Key West

The Moorings adds the Conch Republic to its roster of charter bases.

IBEX to Host Supply Chain Webinar

The April 29 session will address logistical issues that continue to impact manufacturers amid strong customer demand.

Safety is no Accident

Sure, it’s a cliché, but it’s 100 percent accurate. With boats going in the water for a new season in many areas, dealers should wave the safety flag wide and high, especially for the newcomers.

Brunswick Recognized for Diversity

Forbes ranks Brunswick as one of the top employers for diversity for the second consecutive year.

ABYC names Content Director

Sarah Devlin will support ABYC’s events and communications, distributing content through various channels.

Ferretti Group Reports Strong Q1

The conglomerate saw revenues increase by 40 percent, with a record 56 yachts launched in the first quarter.