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Old 10-30-2015, 08:44 PM   #101
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The future of Grand Banks

The whole picture has come together in that Palm Beach was able to see more than they could build and now four models of Palm Beach are being built in the Grand Banks facility. They also take pride that the 60' Grand Banks is being built with materials and methods of Palm Beach.

A couple of board changes made at their annual meeting.

As an overview, I'd say time to publish the obituary of Grand Banks, the boat, as known through their Classic, Heritage, Europa, and Aleutian models over time.

However, it possibly could be the salvation of Grand Banks, the Company, builder of Palm Beach, Eastbay and perhaps something new more like Palm Beach than Grand Banks.

A new regime in charge with the CEO from Palm Beach, a local CFO now, with no boat experience (resignation of long time CFO who also served as interim COO..to pursue other interests) and a career professional in sailmaking on the board. The acquisition of Palm Beach was one company with demand, one with unused production capacity. The quarter ending September 30, they reported income.

Perhaps too it all comes together not to save a brand, but to save the jobs of the Malaysian work force.

This also ties into their dealer termination on Grand Banks, simply because their sales are minimal, not the key to the company and now with the production void taken care of then pursuing more margin by reducing sales commissions may make sense.

So, thinking of Grand Banks, the label, the brand, I have some sadness. However, thinking of the company and the people in Malaysia, there is reason for some optimism. Even if not the direction I might have chosen, it's good to see what was a rudderless company now finding a course.
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Old 10-31-2015, 02:01 AM   #102
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My suspicion of a reverse takeover, even if not financially, seems borne out.
We saw a lovely GB, maybe a 46,for sale today while at the RMYC timber boat show.
Had this "reorganization" not happened, it seems the brand was headed for deep trouble. A form of salvation, albeit with a significant change of direction, is preferable to failure.
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Old 10-31-2015, 12:33 PM   #103
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My suspicion of a reverse takeover, even if not financially, seems borne out.
We saw a lovely GB, maybe a 46,for sale today while at the RMYC timber boat show.
Had this "reorganization" not happened, it seems the brand was headed for deep trouble. A form of salvation, albeit with a significant change of direction, is preferable to failure.
Yes, reverse in terms of control and direction. Really over a period of time it's been Exa/Genting and other investors friendly to them taking over from Livingston and then this appears to be their move to replace all the old with the new.

I do have one marketing concern and would love to hear from others, especially Australians on this. Palm Beach has been selling well as an Australian built boat. We've had discussions here about Australian builders doing surprisingly well. Ultimately might this take some of that glow off the brand? As a Malaysian built boat will it have the same appeal? Now, right now some are being built in Australia and some in Malaysia. I can easily picture buyers wanting to know and be sure there's is coming from Australia. I'm not saying that boat from Australia is better, but I'm saying there's a perception of Australia that appears to help in the market place. I'll say it certainly carries some value in the US as reflected by Maritimo and Riviera. If they were identical to what they are today, but built in China, they wouldn't have the same market appeal.
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Old 11-02-2015, 12:02 AM   #104
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Australians are well accustomed to imports, cars, boats, electrical appliances, etc, some manufacture of PB in Malaysia won`t be a concern here,(though Malaysia itself often is, since our PM called Mahathir "a recalcitrant" years ago,Malaysia`s trashing of political opponents, with repeated trumped up allegations of sexual misconduct against Anwar Ibrahim, and reports of "unusual applications" of Govt. funds).
As to US perceptions of quality difference between Aust and Malaysian builds, it is hard to say from this end, but it is apparent, even as someone who has not and probably never will own a Mariner/Riviera/Maritimo/Palm Beach, that there is good build quality as reflected in the longevity of the boats. It would be a compliment if US buyers preferred Australian build to Malaysian. Perhaps the Aussie connection of Mark Richards as CEO is enough to sustain building elsewhere.
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Old 01-17-2016, 12:19 PM   #105
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Just an update....

Grand Banks brand is now down to 2 Heritage models, 2 Aleutian models and 2 Eastbay models, only one of which has been produced. They've chosen on the Eastbay to redesign more like Palm Beach.

As to the new 60' that drawings were released long ago, there has been nothing else on it and it still hasn't made their web site. It was presented at the Newport boat show in September. It looks to me like they were just floating an idea to get feedback before deciding whether to go further or not.

Essentially the turn around strategy has been to emphasize Palm Beach and build on that, building them in Australia and Malaysia, then to redesign the GB line up more consistent with Palm Beach.
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Old 01-17-2016, 12:29 PM   #106
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Grand Banks brand is now down to 2 Heritage models, 2 Aleutian models and 2 Eastbay models, only one of which has been produced. They've chosen on the Eastbay to redesign more like Palm Beach.

As to the new 60' that drawings were released long ago, there has been nothing else on it and it still hasn't made their web site. It was presented at the Newport boat show in September. It looks to me like they were just floating an idea to get feedback before deciding whether to go further or not.

Essentially the turn around strategy has been to emphasize Palm Beach and build on that, building them in Australia and Malaysia, then to redesign the GB line up more consistent with Palm Beach.
Gasping for air??
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Old 01-17-2016, 12:30 PM   #107
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...It would be a compliment if US buyers preferred Australian build to Malaysian...
You know maybe it's just a cultural thing, but personally I'd prefer Australian over Malaysian anything.
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Old 01-17-2016, 01:15 PM   #108
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Gasping for air??
It's a very conscious decision at this point. Palm Beach has been selling and Grand Banks hasn't. Palm Beach had better production methods apparently as well. The Palm Beach owner was put in charge. The GB shareholders want a profitable boat company building in Malaysia. They don't care what they're building.

As a side note, the Genting Group, largest shareholders of Grand Banks now through one form or another, have now purchased the Lloyd shipyard in Bremerhaven, Germany and ordered 8 cruise ships worth $2 billion from it.
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Old 01-17-2016, 01:42 PM   #109
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Most automobiles are scrap after 20 years not so with boats like GB. Part of the problem for new construction is the huge used market and the very big price tag on the new boat. A company that keeps producing similar boats over a long run which can not keep owners trading up will run into a brick wall.
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Old 05-28-2016, 09:14 AM   #110
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I don't think the issue with GB is generation it's a lack of direction. They started out with a clear purpose and direction, "a dependable diesel cruiser" and were enormously successful. There is still demand for such seaworthy vessels as another member posted. GB lost focus and now try to straddle the gray area between modern Euro and traditional. The result are well made boats that few people want. The market for deep sea vessels has been quite strong.
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Old 05-28-2016, 11:05 AM   #111
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Around 2000 Grand Banks shifted from a semi-displacement hull - their 42 used to have Lehman 120/135s, to a V-hull with large engines. Then the fuel prices spiked. I wondered at the time whether they had made a poor decision.
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Old 05-28-2016, 05:39 PM   #112
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Designed by Beneteau ? guess that's where the market is.
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