Triton Fiberglass Boats Bought by Platinum Equity - 08/04/2010

Last Thursday morning another shoe dropped as the boating industry continues to consolidate. Brunswick Corporation, the largest builder of boats in the world with more brands covering more categories than any other boat-building conglomerate, has divested itself from all Triton fiberglass boats. It will continue to own the Triton aluminum freshwater fishing and bass boat brands. A division of Platinum Equity, the investment firm that purchased about half of Genmar's boat companies in January, bought the Triton fiberglass assets and will move production to the Ranger Boats plant in Flippin, Arkansas. It was also announced that boat brands owned by Platinum Equity would continue to buy Mercury outboard engines. Also being produced in the Ranger factory are Stratos and Champion bass boat brands.

Triton 21XS DC
Triton 21XS DC is a head-to-head competitor to Ranger Boat models.

LAKE FOREST, Ill., July 29 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Brunswick Corporation (NYSE: BC) today announced that it has sold Triton Boats to Fishing Holdings, LLC, an affiliate of Platinum Equity. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

"This decision was part of our ongoing strategic review to further refine our product portfolio and best focus our resources on those brands and marine segments that we believe are core to our success going forward," said Brunswick Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Dustan E. McCoy. "As such, Brunswick will maintain its leadership position in the recreational and fishing boat markets, with a strong presence in the freshwater and sportfishing segments as well as leading brands in the runabout/cruiser and yachts segments."

In connection with this transaction, production of Triton fiberglass boats will be relocated from Ashland City, Tenn., to Flippin, Ark. Lund fiberglass manufacturing will be moved to the Brunswick Boat Group's (BBG) Tellico fiberglass boat manufacturing facility in Vonore, Tenn., while Trophy fiberglass fishing boats will continue to be built in Ashland City through the remainder of the year as Brunswick evaluates strategic alternatives for the brand.

Brunswick will retain rights to certain intellectual property and other rights to Triton aluminum boats, and will continue to sell those models under license as part of Brunswick's aluminum portfolio. These boats will continue to be built at BBG's Lebanon, Mo., aluminum manufacturing facility. BBG's Cypress Cay pontoon boats, which are manufactured in Ft. Wayne, Ind., and carried by many Triton dealers, are not affected by this transaction.

Brunswick's Mercury Marine unit will continue supplying propulsion systems to Triton and Fishing Holdings' other brands.

As a result of these actions, Brunswick said it estimates that the associated restructuring charges could total between $18 million to $20 million, pretax, of which $15 million was recorded in Brunswick's second quarter financial results.

"These decisions, while strategic in nature, are never easy or without difficult consequences," McCoy concluded, "but they are nevertheless required by business realities, and are no reflection upon the dedication and expertise of the men and women at the Ashland City facility."

Brunswick sells Triton brand to Platinum Equity

By IBI Magazine

Brunswick Corp just announced that it had sold Triton Boats to Fishing Holdings LLC, an affiliate of Platinum Equity. Platinum Equity bought six former Genmar brands in the Genmar Bankruptcy auction in February. Terms of the Triton deal were not disclosed. Brunswick said restructuring charges would be between US$18m and US$20m.

Brunswick CEO Dustan McCoy said in a statement that the "strategic decision" was "required by business realities". McCoy added that Brunswick's strategy is to "further refine our product portfolio and best focus our resources on those brands and marine segments that we believe are core to our success going forward".

Production of Triton fiberglass manufacturing will be transferred from Ashland City, Tennessee to Flippin, Arkansas. Platinum Equity builds the Ranger, Stratos and Javelin brands in Flippin.

Brunswick said it would retain rights to intellectual property regarding the Triton aluminium boat line, and will continue to sell them under license as part of Brunswick's aluminium portfolio. Those boats will continue to be built at Brunswick Boat Group's (BBG) facility in Lebanon, Missouri.

Production of Lund fiberglass manufacturing will be moved from Ashland City to Brunswick Boat Group's BBG facility in Vonore, Tennessee.

The company said Trophy fiberglass fishing boats would be built in Ashland City for the rest of the year. Brunswick said it was evaluating "strategic alternatives" for the Trophy brand. The statement did not note whether the company intends to shut the Ashland City facility down.

Brunswick Corp. said today that it sold Triton Boats to Fishing Holdings, an affiliate of Platinum Equity.

Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

"This decision was part of our ongoing strategic review to further refine our product portfolio and best focus our resources on those brands and marine segments that we believe are core to our success going forward," Brunswick chairman and CEO Dustan E. McCoy said in a statement. "As such, Brunswick will maintain its leadership position in the recreational and fishing boat markets, with a strong presence in the freshwater and sportfishing segments, as well as leading brands in the runabout/cruiser and yachts segments."

Known for its quality bass boats and saltwater fishing boats, Triton also builds separate lines of aluminum, pontoon, ski and walleye boats. The company was founded by industry veteran Earl Bentz.

Brunswick will retain the rights to certain intellectual property and other rights to Triton aluminum boats and will continue to sell those models under license as part of Brunswick's aluminum portfolio.

In connection with the transaction, the production of Triton fiberglass boats will be relocated from Ashland City, Tenn., to Flippin, Ark. Lund fiberglass manufacturing will be moved to the Brunswick Boat Group's Tellico fiberglass boatbuilding facility in Vonore, Tenn. Trophy fiberglass fishing boats will be built in Ashland City through the remainder of the year as Brunswick evaluates strategic alternatives.

Those boats will continue to be built at Brunswick's Lebanon, Mo., aluminum manufacturing facility. Brunswick's Cypress Cay pontoon boats, which are manufactured in Fort Wayne, Ind., and carried by many Triton dealers, are not affected by this transaction.

Brunswick's Mercury Marine unit will continue to supply propulsion systems to Triton and Fishing Holdings' other brands.

As a result of these actions, Lake Forest, Ill.-based Brunswick said it estimates that associated restructuring charges could total between $18 million and $20 million, pretax, of which $15 million was recorded in Brunswick's second-quarter financial results.


======================================