A local company has purchased a boat manufacturing business and is relocating its operations to a shop just north of Prince Albert
On Monday, Tru-North RV, Auto and Marine announced the acquisition of Alumarine Boats, an aluminum boat building company from West St. Paul, Man. The plan, for now, is to fulfill existing order with current dealers, but the business is hopeful the new ownership will help to increase orders and increase production, leading to more local jobs.
“It’s something positive coming into the city,” said Tru-North general manager Ron Bonneau.
“It will create jobs, it will pay taxes — we endeavour to buy everything we can locally. In this type of business, it’s not always doable here in the city, but we shoot for Saskatchewan first.”
Alumarine has been building aluminum boats since 1967. They currently sell to dealers in northern Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Ontario.
“We’ve been an Alumarine dealer for several years now. It’s a great product, very popular in the north, not only with private individuals but with fishing camps and lodges,” Bonneau said.
“The dealer network is not really large yet, but we want to expand it and get the boat across the country.”
Right now, the boat manufacturing operation employs four people, including the former owner, who has relocated to Prince Albert. They’re waiting for aluminum right now, but are eager to get going building the boats.
“Once we get rolling into next year, we want to double the previous production and expand our dealer network,” Bonneau said.
“I’m sure we can. The previous company was kind of a ma and pa operation. They didn’t try to expand the dealer network all that much. We think once people start to use these boats and see these boats at different lodges, it will spread. They are that good of a product.”
It’s the second expansion for Tru-North LP, which holds and operates Tru-North RV Auto and Marine, Tru North Homes and now Alumarine.
Tru-North Homes, which specializes in the sale of manufactured homes, was launched about five years ago.
According to a press release, expanded production at Alumarine could bring in six more employees to the boat construction shop. The boats will be constructed at a location just north of the city. The plan is to keep to the same specs and design that customers of Alumarine are used to.
“Alumarine boats are well known in the industry and to our customers, with a reputation of being built north tough,” Bonneau said in a press release.
“We really believe in this product and were very excited when the opportunity came for us to be involved. The bottom line is it’s just a really great boat.
“We’re getting ready to roll and getting excited for the coming year.”