Genmar has announced that it will be consolidating different types of boats into its different manufacturing facilities, while keeping the brand identities distinct. Genmar expects this manufacturing crossover of brands to result in greater efficiencies for the companies. It is calling the shift in manufacturing "Phase 2" of a three-year plan that will culminate with its VEC technology being situated in many of its production facilities.
But for now, all Genmar brand bluewater/saltwater fishing boats will be built in its Sarasota, Florida, facility, while the different-brand cruisers will move to the Four Winns facility in Cadillac, Michigan. Its Little Falls, Minnesota, facility will handle Genmar's various lines of sportboats.
"We're moving some Wellcraft and Glastron/Larson cruisers to Four Winns, and some Four Winns and Wellcraft sportboats to Little Falls," said Irwin Jacobs, Genmar chair. Jacobs said that Genmar expects to be adding several new lines of fishing boats to its fold in the near future, but would not specify any brand names.
Jacobs also said that staffing at the various facilities would change as a result of the shift in production. "We will be increasing workers in some, lowering them in others," he said. But, he reiterated, there would be no brand dilution as a result of the same style boats being built in the same locations. "These changes are strictly for manufacturing," he said. "Design and marketing will remain distinct, and kept at the individual operations. Our engineers won't even get to see what the other companies are doing."
Jacobs said that VEC technology would eventually be the main thrust of its fibreglass production facilities, and that the next facility to have VEC will be its Stratos plant in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. "We have already spent a million dollars preparing it for VEC," said Jacobs. "We expect to be producing VEC boats there in the next year."
(17 June 2002)