Any long and successful career in the high-performance marine industry demands reinvention. No one knows this better than industry veteran Martin Sanborn. Raised in Southern California and now living in South Florida with his wife, Kerri, Sanborn is perhaps best-known for his 15-year tenure with Fountain Powerboats in various management roles from customer service to sales. Most recently, Sanborn worked closely with fellow high-performance marine industry veteran Mindi Doller at Performance Boat Center of South Florida in Fort Lauderdale.
Sanborn also has had—and still has—his share of side projects. They include leading development, production and of single-engine canopied 28-foot Panther raceboats based off a Fountain V-bottom hull for Powerboat P1’s SuperStock series and sharing broadcasting duties for the current American Power Boat Association Offshore Championship Series with announcer Mike Yowaiski.
But while both of those gigs exist for Sanborn today, his latest venture is bigger. About four months ago, Sanborn launched his own licensed, bonded and insured powerboat brokerage business called Sunset Boat Sales. Located in the Fort Lauderdale area. Sunset Boat Sales will specialize in brokerage of go-fast boats from stern-drive catamarans to outboard-engine-powered center consoles.
“At some point, we’d like to get into yacht brokerage,” said Sanborn, fresh from calling last weekend’s 35th annual Sarasota Powerboat Grand Prix with Yowaiski. “But my roots are in the high-performance world so that is where we’ll begin specializing.”
And that’s exactly where he’s started. A quick stroll through the Sunset Boat Sales website’s listing section reveals models from a $527,000 Outerlimits SV 43 to a $369,000 Fountain 42 Lightning to a $68,500 pleasure version of an outboard-powered 28-foot Panther sportboat.
During his 30-plus-year career, Sanborn reportedly has sold more than $200 million worth of powerboats—primarily in the high-performance segment. He said he’s looking forward to continuing in a more expanded sales and service role in his new brokerage venture. His future plans for the company including building out a new 5,000-square-foot rigging shop.
But for now, Sanborn, at least when not broadcasting an offshore powerboat race—his next announcing gig in the APBA series is the 25th annual St. Clair River Classic July 24-26 in Michigan—is entirely focused on brokerage.
“At Sunset Boat Sales, our job is to connect qualified buyers with the sellers of premium boats, whether those boats are pre-owned or new,” he said. “It’s our goal to help our clients enjoy the boating lifestyle in a boat that meets their needs. While we specialize in high performance, we strive to place our focus on quality boats throughout the boating spectrum.”