Sea Ray to expand, invest in Tennessee

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – The Brunswick Boat Group’s Sea Ray operating unit will embark on a plan to expand and modernize several Sea Ray operations in East Tennessee, the company said in a release today.

Sea Ray plans to add more than 200 jobs and bring in excess of $22 million in additional investment to the region, while reducing styrene emissions at its Tellico factory in Vonore, Tenn., by one-third.

Sea Ray will also double the capacity of its Tellico factory to concentrate production of its sport boats up to 22 feet in length, including the 180, 185 and 200 Sport models. The Tellico plant will add closed molding.

“We are extremely pleased to expand our presence, investment and commitment in East Tennessee,” said Dustan E. McCoy, president of the Brunswick Boat Group.

BBG said it would also establish key partnerships with the University of Tennessee and other institutions to supply its growing need for engineers, managers and supervisors.

Brunswick Boat Group has applied for several local incentives, including a seven-year tax freeze, which is valued at $1.7 million. Local officials will also consider a capital grant for $1 million, the company said.

“We are grateful for the Brunswick Boat Group’s continued commitment to our state,” said Matt Kisber, commissioner for Tennessee Economic and Community Development. “This announcement is the result of the state working in conjunction with local leadership and our economic development partners to put forth a comprehensive, attractive incentive package for Brunswick.”

The Tellico Plant currently employs 510 people and the project will call for the addition of 75 positions within four years. Knox County’s Sea Ray operation employs 1,175 people and will grow to 1,300 in the next four years.

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