Just as every picture tells at least one small story, many pictures can tell even bigger stories. Take all the images of Nor-Tech Hi-Performance Boats center consoles, catamarans and V-bottoms from Fort Myers Offshore and Florida Powerboat Club events every year.
No single builder has a greater presence in Fort Myers Offshore lunch/fun runs in Southwest Florida. Likewise for Florida Powerboat Club powerboat club poker runs, the sheer volume of Nor-Tech images from these events—year in and year out—does not lie.
Backing Sunshine State events has been part of the Fort Myers, Fla., high-performance powerboat company’s program since Norwegians Trond Schou and Nils Johnson founded it almost 30 years ago. And it’s been beneficial for everyone involved.
Just ask Stu Jones, the founder and president of the Florida Powerboat Club, which is based in Pompano Beach, Fla.
“Honestly, I have to give them a perfect score because they have been so loyal to Florida Powerboat Club since 1995,” said Jones. “We really have a 25-year relationship that has stood the test of time. From supporting their customers to being engaged with the club, they have been instrumental in helping to grow our sport, while still focusing on building a great brand of boat.
“Their approach to our relationship has always been, ‘Stu, what can we do for Florida Powerboat Club and to make things better for our sport?’ rather than, ‘Stu what can FPC do for Nor-Tech?’” he continued. They see through that—they know that FPC is fully engaged in promoting the sport. They are past that point of me having to sell them on what we do. That’s the true sign of a good sponsor, when they recognize the power of the partnership and that mutually beneficial goals that can be achieved when we get together and promote successful events and a fun powerboating lifestyle.”
Former Fort Myers Offshore presidents Bob Barnhart, who founded the nonprofit scholarship fundraising club has a similar take on the boat-builder’s value as an FMO corporate sponsor.
“I would like to think we are good for each other,” said Barnhart. “Club members get to show their Nor-Tech boats to others in the club, many of whom then become Nor-Tech owners, and Nor-Tech corporate sponsorship helps with FMO’s student scholarship program. It’s a win-win for everyone.”
Eric Belisle, another former FMO president, was quick to credit Nor-Tech’s dealers, for their ongoing support.
“Nor-Tech’s dealer support, especially from Raymond and Peter Roberts of Double R Performance, is irreplaceable,” said Belisle. “Double R attends events, helps members and financially supports the club.”
Of course, being involved with FMO and FPC events helps Nor-Tech sell boats—and there’s nothing wrong with that. Though more than a dozen powerboat brands were represented at the FMO 2019 New Years’ Lunch Run, Nor-Tech had the largest contingent in the event. Almost half the boats in the fleet were Nor-Tech products, and that kind of Nor-Tech turnout is not unusual.
“Nor-Tech’s involvement is crucial—and not just from a marketing perspective,” said Geoff Tomlinson, the company’s dealer manager. “It gives us an opportunity to really engage with our current and future clients. We get to see our product being used as it’s fully intended.”
So taken with the brand and the folks behind it was Jones that he actually had Nor-Tech build a 39-foot Super Vee for him 10 years ago. Appropriately named The King Of Clubs, the 39-footer was powered by Mercury Racing 700 SCi engines.
“I cannot begin to say what great partners they were in building my first true performance boat,” he said. “The price was right, the build time was ideal and the end result was far beyond my expectations—as was the factory support that I got. It makes me want to go back and build another boat with them.”
Jones paused for a moment. “Hmm,” he said. “Now that’s a great idea.”