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Irish Group Acquire Sunseeker

2nd June 2010
Irish Group Acquire Sunseeker

A group of Irish investors has taken a majority stake in luxury boatbuilder Sunseeker. FL Capital Partners, based in Blackrock, Co Dublin, has partnered with Australian bank Macquaried and Haymarket financial to pay €29.9million for the controlling interest in Sunseeker, in a move dubbed by the Wall Stree Journal as a 'rare vote of confidence for a business in a sector that has been badly hit by the financial crisis'.

The consortium is no stranger to taking a gamble - it also owns the Racing Post newspaper.

The move comes despite Sunseeker slipping into the red last year. The luxury motorboat company made a pre-tax loss of £9.1m in the year up to July 2009, compared with a pre-tax profit of £17.8m in the previous year. The Poole-based company was hit with an unexpected £6.8m bill to bailout one of its distributors after they faced financial difficulties last year in addition to a £1.9 trading loss.
Despite the increasingly difficult economic climate, Sunseeker has continued to invest in new boats, with £6m spent on new moulds and the development of a deep-water dock at Portland in Dorset.

The Irish Times reports on the story here, while the Irish Independent describes the company as boatbuilders to James Bond here.

Published in Marine Trade
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