CHARLESTON, S.C.—Tommy Hancock and Dale Martin are back in the boat building business with their new company, Sportsman Boats. Former boat company owners have combined forces to create Sportsman Boats which manufactures an intelligently designed series of center console and bay boats.
Hancock was one of the original founders of Sea Pro Boats Inc. and Martin a founder of Key West Boats Inc. They sold their businesses in 2003 and 2004 respectively, but both have kept a close eye on the marine industry. Hancock said, “We watched what was happening in the industry and we both saw a need in the market place that we believed we could fill.”
Hancock and Martin are longtime friends, despite the fact that they were former competitors in the boat business. Through many years of hunting and fishing together, the two have maintained a friendship for over 25 years. For these two men, boat-building is in their blood, and they are excited about the opportunity to work together.
They launched Sportsman Boats with a 229 center console which debuted in January at the Charleston Boat Show. Martin said, “The boat has been very well received and sales have exceeded our expectations. We are very excited with the early success of Sportsman.” They are in the process of launching their second boat model, a 227 bay boat, which is currently in production in their 40,000 square foot facility in Summerville, SC.
Sportsman Boats are on the forefront of technology with their manufacturing techniques and modern designs. Sportsman uses the latest in 3D computer technology in the design of all of its boats. A few notable design features of Sportsman® Boats include: ergonomically designed consoles and seating, deeper forward entries which provide softer and dryer rides, and the total access hatches to name a few.
Hancock and Martin will have a total of six models ranging in size from 20 to 25 feet by the fall of 2012 and will continue to grow the product line from there. Combining their many years of boat building experience with various suppliers, vendors, and dealers the two feel confident in the future of their new company.