Luxury yacht builder Fairline Boats is buoyant again after being snapped up by new owners

Crisis-hit yacht manufacturer Fairline Boats has been saved after the firm was bought by two Russian investors.

By The Newsroom
Monday, 25th January 2016, 5:29 pm
Updated Monday, 25th January 2016, 5:34 pm
The newly-named Fairline Yachts' new managing director Russell Currie.
The newly-named Fairline Yachts' new managing director Russell Currie.

The company, with bases in Oundle, Corby and Ipswich, plunged into administration late last year with the loss of 380 jobs.

The new-look company will be called Fairline Yachts and has been bought for an undisclosed sum by Fairline Acquisitions Ltd.

In a bid to ensure continuation of the boat building, the company has invited previous employees to apply for about 100 jobs that will be immediately available.

The purchase of the company has been funded by the two long term UK-based Russian investors, who have not been named,

But they are said to be highly experienced in managing and developing marine businesses and in the production of high technology products, IT and media services.

Both are also passionate boat owners.

Although the amount paid for the company has not been revealed it is understood that the purchase price has been paid in full and there is no deferred payment or any debt.   

It is understood The firm will led by newly-appointed managing director Russell Currie.

He said: “I am delighted to have been appointed managing director for Fairline Yachts.

“With the resources of the investors, coupled with the expert knowledge of the management team and our energy and passion for the brand, the structure is in place for a great future for Fairline Yachts.

“We will focus on creating high quality luxury motor yachts that boaters will want to own and dealers will want to sell.

“As a sign of our commitment to Fairline Yachts’ loyal customer base and dealer network, we will be completing all orders for boats received by Fairline Boats, including those that have not yet started being built as well as those that are already in production.”

Mr Currie has nearly 30 years directly relevant experience and a strong background in the luxury motor yacht industry.

He has been a Fairline dealer since 1998 and is chief executive of Fairline North Mallorca, where he has achieved over £90million of sales.

Prior to his role at Fairline North Mallorca, he was engineering director at Sunseeker International’s factory team based at Mallorca, and was chief test engineer at Princess Yachts International before that.

His appointment ensures continuity of senior management at Fairline Yachts and safeguards close customer and boat dealer relations under the new ownership structure.

Fairline is a global brand and specialises in the design, engineering, manufacture and distribution of luxury boats in the 38 to 80 feet range.

Under its new ownership some immediate changes have been announced.

Fairline Yachts will be taking a short term lease on the factory at Corby in order to ensure the efficient removal of essential equipment from Corby to the main manufacturing site at Nene 

Valley, Oundle.

The test centre at Ipswich was closed by the previous owner but Fairline Yachts will be using the facilities available at Ipswich Marina.

It is expected that Fairline Yachts will build 30 to 40 boats in its first year and that this will increase to 50 boats per year in the second year, and up to 100 boats by the third year.

The former owners of Fairline Boats, which were Better Capital and then Wessex Bristol, are not shareholders and do they have any part in the new business. 

Alastair Massey of FRP Advisory and joint administrator, said: “The sale to Fairline Acquisitions offers the best possible outcome. We would like to thank a supportive customer and supplier base who, together with a loyal workforce, helped see the business through the administration process.”