Maritimo reports stellar year and a bright future

Maritimo reports stellar year and a bright future

Australian luxury motor yacht manufacturer Maritimo has had a stellar year in 2018. The launch of their game changing X series sport yacht models, along with new generation flybridge and sedan models and the company’s multi-million dollar expansion of their manufacturing facilities on the Gold Coast, have all combined to deliver record breaking sales in 2018.

Overall sales are up more than 30 percent for the 2018/19 financial year on the previous year and in 2019 production is being stepped up to deliver vessels currently sold and to cater for further sales with exciting new models on the horizon.

The headline grabbing X60 sport yacht launched at the Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show in May has been a runaway success and combined with its exciting new sibling, the X50, these two models have accounted for more than 20 sales since release.

Maritimo lead designer, Tom Barry-Cotter, said the X series had added another layer to the Maritimo product line along with new customers seeking sport yachts with aggressive lines and styling yet capable of true long range blue water voyages.

However, he said the new generation M series flybridge motor yachts still remained the core of the brand’s identity and sales success.

“Our M series flybridge motor yachts still account for the majority of total sales,” he said. “The experience of enclosed flybridge cruising is so unique to our brand, and our designs cater to such a diverse range of conditions and markets, it will remain the foundation of our DNA and what our brand is about.”

Fresh from the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show early this month Barry-Cotter said interest in the Maritimo brand around the world had never been stronger. “Fort Lauderdale is a massive show and the world’s most established and best known brands are displayed there, but we had a constant flow of people gravitating to the Maritimo display to view the X60 and see what the sport yacht world is talking about,” he said.

Barry- Cotter said the record year started with the Sanctuary Cove International Boat show and more than $40 million in sales. From there the Sydney International Boat Show saw the momentum continue and then across the Tasman the Auckland On Water Boat Show again saw a record number of sales. Sales continue to come in after the conclusion of a string of North American boat shows which will cap off the record year that was.

He said the launch of the X series with its’ innovative design made a strong statement to the industry internationally that Maritimo is committed to further establishing itself as a sector leader continually pushing the boundaries.

“As new technology and ideas constantly flow into the entire our product lines, never resting in search for further performance and innovation we are raising the bar internationally in the luxury motor yacht sector.”

Maritimo’s build pipeline now stretches out to 2020 and the company is in the process of expanding its state of the art Australian based production facility in an effort to keep up with the growing sales demand.

Building for the future 

Maritimo’s multi-million dollar expansion of its original Gold Coast plant will ‘future proof’ the business. L to R Tom Barry-Cotter, Phil Candler, Garth Corbitt.

According to Maritimo, a multi-million dollar expansion of its original Gold Coast plant will ‘future proof’ the business and create Australia’s most advanced and environmentally sensitive marine industry manufacturing facility is nearing completion.

The works, which have been ongoing for more than a year will be completed early in the new year and will virtually double the company’s original manufacturing base.

Company founder and marine industry doyen, Bill Barry-Cotter, said when completed the expanded manufacturing plant would cover 4.664 hectares and would be one of the most advanced in the industry. Maritimo has increased its land holding by 197% and its total building areas by 52%.

“We conducted a root and branch review of our entire manufacturing operation and this new facility has enabled us to streamline and refine how we design and manufacture boats and at the same time dramatically improve the working environment for our people,” he said.

CEO Garth Corbitt said the completion of the new manufacturing facility would comes as Maritimo’s global expansion is being stepped up.

“Ongoing the company will continue to market approximately half of the vessels we produce internationally and our new improved base will enable us to do that efficiently and cost effectively ultimately resulting in a better product for our customers and a better environment for our people,” he said.

“Our total manufacturing plant under roof is now 16,550 square metres excluding office space,” he said. Prior to the McPhail Road acquisition and building works Maritimo’s production facility covered 10,840 square metres including 1028 square metres for the race team headquarters. The acquisition will see a further 5710 square metres added.

Maritimo General Manager Operations, Phil Candler, said the expansion enabled Maritimo to grow and increase the size of its vessels as and when it sees fit without having to make any significant factory changes.

He said benefits were already flowing with the new product and design team being shifted from the company’s Hope Harbour facility into the refurbished existing building on the acquired site. “We now have the new product and design team located with R & D and have virtually trebled their space in an area which enables better interaction with manufacturing and a more productive flow of ideas and information between design and production,” he said.

Candler said the improvements and advances in-built into the new combined facility were substantial and significant and would also make for a work environment without peer in the marine sector in Australia. Even rainwater run off will be harvested and filtered before being returned to the environment and used to nurture gardens and landscaping. He said the new buildings enabled Maritimo to redistribute current resources at Waterways Drive which would enhance productivity and quality of workmanship.

“The new lamination shed has greater capacity and volume than before which creates better air flow through the building and mobile designated air extraction units can be deployed to anywhere in the building where there is a need in the work process flow,” he said.

“Walls in the new sheds have been insulated to reduce heat, the volume of air in the facility has been increased to better the work environment, there are new lunchrooms, toilets and showers, 230 square metres of portable mezzanine areas have been purchased enabling us to tailor workplaces specifically to the needs of the day, we have greater storage for moulds, both inside and out, and have created more designated detailing and cutting bays with state of the art extraction.”

Candler said the expansion has seen a doubling of Martimo’s CNC router machinery with router one and 3D Design technology located together in McPhail Road building one to assist with new product development.

A new CNC router was moved into the existing wood shop at Waterway’s Drive

In one of the new buildings he said a streamlined manufacturing process would see vessels enter at one end and then make their way through the facility emerging at the other end virtually completed.

“We have the capacity to have four vessels engineered at one time as they progress through that facility,” he said.

“This design and production process allows us to cater for a wide variety of different sized vessels and to increase the size of our models in the future if we wish to.”

Candler said the blueprint for the new combined facility and its various different elements came about after extensive consultation with the different crews on the factory floor to get feedback on what worked the best.

“We have minimised waste in terms of time, manpower and materials, we have streamlined the process to provide an improved and higher quality product and we have created an environment for both manufacturing workers and the R and D and design department to excel,” he said.

Candler said as part of its expansion Maritimo was increasing its apprentice intake and was continuing its training and development of current staff while undertaking a substantial manpower drive aimed at increasing the overall workforce by 30 percent.

Racing arm ramps up for 2019

Maritimo Racing, has had a year of highs and lows and is well positioned to be a competitive force here and overseas in 2019.

While the company notches up success after success in terms of model releases and sales, Maritimo’s international race team, Maritimo Racing, has had a year of highs and lows on the national and international race circuit in the 2018 race series and is well positioned to be a competitive force here and overseas in 2019.

Maritimo Racing’s Andrew Willaton and Steve Jellick rounded out the year with an outright win in the Upper Hawkesbury Power Boat Club’s Bridge to Bridge event.

Maritimo Racing ran in partnership with Team 3 Offshore powerboat racing using Maritimo engines, propellers and drivers.

Andrew Willaton and Steve Jellick claimed the offshore class, and outright victory with a blistering time of 31m 29s – the fastest time in the last five years. Maritimo Racing hold the offshore class record at 30m 26s set in 2012 with Tom Barry-Cotter and Ross Willaton in the cockpit, but have yet to run a sub-30 minute time, or close in on the overall record of 29m 47s set in 2008.

Barry-Cotter has stated they will announce 2019 Bridge to Bridge plans and whether Maritimo racing will campaign its own boat or partner again with Team 3 Offshore Powerboat Racing later in 2019.

He said Maritimo has used the past year to ramp up the testing and fine tuning of its race boats for a major assault on the local and international series next year.

Maritimo racing was involved in a high speed accident in the season opening race of the 2018 Union International Motonautique XCAT world championships in Fujairah, UAE in April which ended its 2018 campaign.

And in the shortened Australian Offshore Superboat Championships the team encountered mechanical issues at the opening round of the season which impacted the team’s mathematical chances of retaining the national championship. “The opening rounds of both series we compete in saw 2018 championship aspirations crushed from the opening rounds, so our strategy shifted toward focus on development for 2019 during this year,” said Tom Barry-Cotter.

“We have used the season to concentrate on power, reliability and experimenting with setups. ” Because we are always pushing to be at the front we sometimes have to take known/safe options in terms of setups, but this year because we had nothing to lose we tried lots of different setups to gather data that we wouldn’t typically have tried in other years.

“This will pay huge dividends for us in 2019.

“Our new R36 is now performing even better than the well established 40 ft catamaran that we’ve campaigned since 2012 and it performs in all conditions and importantly is still being improved.”

Maritimo Racing are also in the middle of constructing a new R30 catamaran destined for the UIM XCAT World Championship in 2019.

The R30 XCAT in construction has been designed by Maritimo and will be constructed using the latest advancements in carbon fibre technology.

“There has been heavy design consideration of acceleration and handling to suit modern course designs and heavy analysis of the aerodynamic properties of the hull and deck.

The latest cockpit safety design is currently undergoing panel deflection and failure testing in liaison with the UIM. The latest generation cockpit has increased head clearance and crash deflection protection engineered into the design and construction.

Barry-Cotter said much of what Maritimo racing learned on the international and national race circuits eventually was incorporated into the company’s range of production motor yachts. “We are the only production motor yacht manufacturer with a dedicated race team and that gives us a great advantage over the competition,” he said.

“The knowledge we gain through racing gives us a distinct advantage in terms of staying at the leading edge of production motor yacht manufacturing.”

All in all, while 2018 has been a good year for Maritimo by any measure, 2019 is looking even better.