KCS International Inc., the parent company of Cruisers Yachts and Rampage Sport Fishing Yachts, hired back 100 of its employees to work on new orders for both brands and to help complete the 2011 prototype of the 470 Cruisers Yachts Sports Coupe. "Although the past year has been pretty rough on the boating industry, our unwavering commitment to the Cruisers Yachts and Rampage Sport Fishing Yachts brands is what has carried us through these tough economic times," said Mark Pedersen, president of KCS International, in a statement.
The new Cruisers Yachts 52 has helped the company become one of the leading American-built euro-styled express cruisers.
"Our future looks quite bright as our engineering and marketing departments continue to explore every opportunity to grow both brands,” Peterson said.
Since November, employees have been brought back to finish production on several assembly lines, as well as start production on a number of newly ordered Cruisers Yachts and Rampage Sport Fishing Yachts.
Rampage 34 with New IPS System
The first model 34 Rampage built with a Volvo Penta IPS engine featuring the new Dynamic Positioning System is currently under construction at the Oconto, Wis., facility. BoatTEST.com recently inspected the Rampage 34 and found that its exterior finish work and interior execution was at the top of its class.
"After the 470 Cruisers Yachts Sports Coupe prototype debuts this summer, I fully expect that we will be in an even better position to bring back more of our long-time employees," said Pedersen.
Paradigm Shift at Work
“This is one of the biggest re-hires we have heard about in the last six months and it indicates to us that the boat business is coming back, and at the same time there will be a reshuffling of brand preferences,” said Jeff Hammond, Editor of BoatTEST’s weekly newsletters.
“The old paradigm where people were relatively ignorant of what made powerboats exceptional is over. The new paradigm has many facets, two of them being that buyers have a greater appreciation of quality and utility and are losing the herd mentality,” Hammond said. “This augers well for companies like Cruisers Yachts and Rampage which build only larger boats of top-tier quality.”
Because Cruisers Yachts and Rampage are built in the same facility with the same staff, and because the products and vendors used for their largest boats are also used in their smallest, buyers of boats at the small end get the benefit. This has played well in the marketplace, according to a KCS spokesman, because the buyers who are left are the more discerning ones.