BananaBelt Boats & Yachts announces expansion, name change

BananaBelt Boats & Yachts will be expanding its dry land facility by 300 percent, to six acres from 1.5 acres, allowing it to accommodate 140 motor yachts for sale in one location.

The groundbreaking on the new facility is scheduled to start September 15, and is planned for an early October completion. With the expansion will come added staff of four new brokers and two service staff.

The company also recently changed its name to BananaBelt Boats & Yachts from BananaBelt Boats to better reflect and emphasize the company’s target market of motor yachts from 28 feet to 70 feet.

“It’s a market-driven expansion,” said BananaBelt Boats & Yachts owner Amy Ripley Thornton.  “Currently we can accommodate only 40 yachts and on a weekly basis we have to turn away four to five vessels. This expansion will allow us to change that and serve those boat owners who understand the value and benefits of showing their yachts in our dry land facility. Because when your boat is out of the water you no longer need to worry about losing bottom paint or zincs, this means lower costs while your vessel is up for sale. It’s also much less expensive to store a boat out of the water then in water, and more environmentally friendly too.”

Like the current sales facility, the expansion will have stairs and a walkway around all the boats which allows buyers easy access on and around the vessels. Additionally, from this perspective, buyers can see the topside and bottom of each boat, something which is not possible when boats are in the water. “Being able to show buyers the hull shape and condition of a vessel’s bottom allows us to instill more confidence in perspective buyers,” Thornton said.

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