Triton Industries, builder of the Manitou line of tri-toon boats, is launching a $4 million expansion in its native Michigan.
In July, the 29-year-old boatbuilder said it will build a new headquarters and production facility later this year in a vacant warehouse west of Capital Region International Airport in Lansing, Mich.
At about 160,000 square feet, the new facility will be three times larger than the company’s current quarters on Northport Drive in Delta Township, allowing Triton to pursue an “aggressive”growth plan that could boost its work force by 50 percent during the next three years, company officials told the Lansing State Journal.
Company president Scott VanWagenen said the company will invest nearly $4 million in the new facility. The company searched for about year before settling on the Watertown Township facility, he said.
“We wanted to stay in the Lansing area,”he told the paper. “We started here and desperately needed to stay close to our work force. A lot of our workers have been here since the beginning, and they are very skilled at what they do.”
The company worked closely with the Lansing Economic Area Partnership, Watertown Township officials and other agencies to find a suitable site, he said.
The privately owned company doesn’t release profit figures, but VanWagenen said revenue will be about $35 million this year.
Manitou now employs about 90 people and produced about 1,200 boats during the 2014 model year, said Greg VanWagenen, the company’s marketing and communications director.
The new plant will allow it to build 2,000 or more boats every year, although volume is not the only goal, he said.“It will allow us to customize and specialize our pontoon boats more than we do now,”he said.
The company said it hopes to be in its new facility by the end of the year.
Manitou’s line ranges from traditional pontoons starting at about $17,000 to high-end tri-toon models costing $85,000 or more.