Department of Economic and Community Development Commissioner George Gervais joined representatives of Morris Yachts, Maine's longest standing family-owned custom sailboat builder, Thursday evening as they unveiled their first new boat design in four years.
Morris' President, Cuyler Morris, and Chief Operating Officer, Doug Metchick, used the introduction of their new M46 yacht to kick off a five-year company plan to revitalize and increase marine jobs in Maine by renewing the company's focus on developing new products and technologies.
Recognizing the value to Maine's economy, Governor Paul R. LePage congratulated the family-owned business. "Each M46 sailboat creates five good-quality jobs in our great State of Maine," said Governor LePage. "That's in addition to the 100 jobs that Morris Yachts provides. These are the kind of jobs that Mainers should aspire to." Adding to its internationally recognized M-Series line, the M46 boasts an all-new hull design, versatility and never-before-seen innovations in a classic yacht of her size range.
"With other boat builders disappearing, this has forced us to understand our customer like never before," said CEO Metchick. "The M46 is the result of an extensive research and design process where the market's needs and the customer's desires are reflected in every inch of the exterior and interior."
Unfortunately, Governor LePage was unable to attend Thursday's event. On behalf of the LePage Administration, Commissioner Gervais praised Morris Yachts for its superior quality.
"Morris Yachts is the epitome of the high quality of workmanship that defines our State," said Commissioner Gervais during the product launch event held in Portland. "Your commitment to excellence and your dedication do not go unnoticed."
Boat building in the state employs about 1,200 individuals, about 200 more than in 2010. The rise of light-weight, high-strength composites in the manufacture of boat hulls and accessories has revolutionized the boat building process.