Some of you may have heard a recent rumor floating around the industry that long-time Jersey boatbuilder Ocean Yachts was closing for business—which is simply not true. I had caught wind of the rumor and went straight to the source, John Leek IV, the company's general manager, to see what was up. Here is what J4 had to say via e-mail:
“Kevin, thanks for touching base about our status here at Ocean. Contrary to the rumors you have heard, Ocean is NOT bankrupt. It’s unfortunate that bad news spreads so quickly, especially when it’s not true. Like most boat companies, we’re struggling through this recession. We’ve had a lot of layoffs and cutbacks. We’ve made a lot of touch choices to get our overhead in check. We’ve had to drastically reduce our magazine ads, boat shows, demos, etc. and I think that’s where these rumors got started. Although not as many as we used to, we’ve built a handful of boats this year. With a smaller overhead we can survive on less boats. I think our customers understand that. Many of them are in similar situations in their own businesses. This is a pivotal time for our industry and our company. Albeit slowly, we are laying a foundation for the future. We even introduced a brand new model earlier this summer, a 37’ Express. And even better news, we have an order for one that we start building on Monday. - J4”
So there you go, rumormongers. Stick that in your pipe and smoke it.