I left work early yesterday and have come back to find 3 pages of great ideas.
Firstly, to those that know me, I am schemeing. Actually it's Stuart not me doing the schemeing.
I love Rodmans, even more after my adventure on the 1250 in the Summer.
I know Ben fairly well at RBS and also know he's probably reading this, but also know he'll chuckle when I say that if he was to fall over tomorrow morning with a heart attack then I'd be knocking on Rodmans door by the afternoon.
The scheme is no secret and unlike some of my own plans it isn't a pipe dream as the successful businesses are already in place to support them.
1) We need a product we can be proud to represent at Parkstone Bay Yachts.
A product aimed at "high end" sport fishing with a range ideally from 6m to 14mish.
This would in no way compete with our Sea Ray dealership and be marketted towards the cruising family who likes to fish. The bigger of the boats need to be first class with an A1 finish, A1 sea keeping and handling and look every bit as good inside as the fishing features on the outside
2)We need a product around 40' for our sea school, Harbour Sea School. This will be an easy boat to drive, twin diesels, powerful yet economical and have the ability for some overnighters or catnaps between watches. It will be used for upper end training, Yachtmaster etc.
3) We need a product around 40' to join the existing fleet at Dorset Cruises. It needs to be smart enough for corporate charter, exclusive fireworks cruises AND also for luxury angling charter. The norm for angling is 8 to 10 anglers cram onto a 35' basically fitted boat to get covered in blood and guts for the day ad come home stinking of fish. This will take exclusive small groups out, give them breakfast, a decent lunch aim to catch them the fish of a lifetime and then bring it back and cook it for a delicious meal and a bottle of decent Sauv Blanc at our rather good restaurant here at the marina. The daily rate will be rather more than a typical angling charter, but so will the experience.
Oh, and for the fishing lads on here, we may consider doing Channel Islands and proper long range trips out into the Western Approaches... these will be for "proper" fish!
It must be explained that the angling side will only be a small part of the plan, but as a smelly old fisherman it's the bit that excites me most.
I would love to work with Ben and Rodman here, but in fairness it wouldn't tick box 1).
So, we need our own Rodman that is not a Rodman!
Some of the brands discussed:
1) Interceptor and Wildcat.
A cat is a no no. I love them, but they won't attract the corporate charter brigade and they aren't really suitable for a sea school.
Interceptors are not actually very good sea boats (in my opinion only and yes, I have seen the videos) and there are much better built boats out there.
The yard is very small and they handle all sales directly.
The same goes re handling sales direct for any of the small independents.
2) Most of the American boats are all excellent at what they do, but have such limited appeal in the UK from a sales perspective. The flybridge examples are just too way out for us to get our heads around when we are comparing from Eaus to Fairline etc. The build quality is usually far superior, but the look we simply don't get.
Their open boats all look exactly the same when it comes to fishing and, again, that look really isn't one a UK buyer tends to take to.
They are usually far too expensive too!
3) Jeanneau and Beneteau.
I have a passion for both these brands having been involved with Jeanneau for many years and also owning a little Merry Fisher 695 of my own. I know both brnads weaknesses and strong points. Neither brand offers a range that is qute right, not to mention a dealer network which is rather flooded to say the least.
Sorry Duncan, just not for me and not big enough at the high end.
Already a distributor here in the UK. In my opinion, not particularly good boats either. Adequate, but not the right ones for me.
Too small, available as a dealership, but nothing like a strong enough range.
6) Poweryachblogs suggestions are all fascinating and brands I know extremely little about.
Research required here. Thank you.
Another suggestion is to talk to an existing builder and tell them what we want.
They may step up and produce a range of boats that are suitable, but that takes substantial balls from them as the investment in moulds and tooling is pretty vast.
Take Sunseekers dreadful "Sportfisher". They had the idea, but didn't actually take any advice from any actual sport fishermen as to what was required. The boat was bloody awful. With the right advice, a builder like Sunseeker to build exactly the right, small, dedicated range, but the chances of persuading them to build the smaller end are second to none.
In the same vein, we would actually consider doing a less crook like version ( scratch that, we would do a totally professional version) of the business that was / is Tarquin Trader and find a foreign yard who will produce what we want for us.
So, theres the scheme and the ideas rattling around in the few small lumps of grey matter I have left.
Keep ideas coming please, all fabulously useful!
Global-Remote-Medical "Wherever You Dare"