Published: Wednesday, 16 July 2014

Grand Banks Yachts Limited (Grand Banks) announces that its shareholders have approved the acquisition of Palm Beach Motor Yacht Co Pty Ltd (Palm Beach) at an Extraordinary General Meeting in Singapore.

As part of Grand Banks’ first acquisition, Mark Richards, the founder and sole shareholder of Palm Beach, will be appointed Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the enlarged group.

Under the terms of the acquisition, Grand Banks will purchase all of Palm Beach’s shares for up to US$10 million (S$11.7 million), of which up to US$8 million (S$9.4 million) will be in cash and US$2 million (S$2.3 million) in new Grand Banks shares to be issued to Richards. This will give Richards a 6% stake in the enlarged share capital of Grand Banks, which will increase from its current 173.01 million shares to 184.03 million shares.

The appointment of Richards as CEO will take effect on the completion date of the acquisition, and will see Peter Poli relinquish his role as Acting CEO and continue with his role as Chief Financial Officer and Executive Director of the enlarged group. Richards will also join the Board as Executive Director.

Grand Banks Yachts Acquires Palm Beach Motor Yachts

The acquisition of Palm Beach allows Grand Banks to acquire a profitable business, provides opportunity to expand beyond its three existing yacht series and leverage on synergies in supplier networks of the two brands. Grand Banks will also tap into Palm Beach’s manufacturing techniques to streamline operational efficiency at its Pasir Gudang yard in Malaysia.

“We strongly believe that Mark will be a great asset to Grand Banks,” says Heine Askaer-Jensen, Chairman of Grand Banks. “His extensive experience as a boat builder and entrepreneur, combined with champion yachtsman, will be [the] best fit for the critical CEO position and is a significant step in establishing the Grand Banks’ group as a leading boat-building company with two world-renowned brands.”

“I am honoured to be part of the Grand Banks family, a brand that I have deep respect for,” says Richards. “The collective strengths of the Grand Banks and Palm Beach brands will further position the enlarged group as a leader in the industry.”

As of June 2014, Palm Beach had secured nine new yacht orders for 2015, of which seven or eight are expected to be completed in 2015 at the Australian facility. The acquisition provides an opportunity for Palm Beach to scale up production by taking advantage of Grand Banks’ manufacturing facility in Pasir Gudang.

Upon completion of the transaction, the financial results of Palm Beach will be consolidated with Grand Banks’, and will contribute to Grand Banks’ financial performance.