Freedom Boat Club, a division of Brunswick Corporation (NYSE: BC), announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire its Freedom Boat Club of Chicago franchise operation and territory from its current owner. The scope of the transactions includes all four current Illinois-based locations and rights to build new club locations in part of Northern Illinois and portions of Northwest Indiana.
Currently, there are three Freedom Boat Club locations in downtown Chicago and one in the Northwest suburbs, with plans to launch new locations during the 2021 boating season.
Freedom Boat Club entered the Chicago market in 2014 and has continually attracted new boaters to its shared access concept. Memberships at the Illinois club locations have grown around 30% annually over the past four years, a testament to prior ownership and its staff.
“Chicago is the third largest city in the United States, and we believe there is tremendous opportunity to grow Freedom Boat Club in this market,” said Cecil Cohn, Freedom Boat Club Network president. “The franchise owner who established this territory, successfully grew the business and established the right team to provide exceptional service to its members. With this acquisition, we will continue to accelerate Freedom’s growth in this market and advance our expansion into the Upper Midwest. We look forward to continuing to serve our members and grow our footprint in some of the best boating communities throughout the world.”
This marks the second acquisition made by Freedom Boat Club over the past year, after successfully purchasing the Charleston, South Carolina territory in the spring of 2020. Freedom Boat Club of Chicago is now Freedom’s fifth corporate owned territory joining Southwest Florida, Southeast Florida, Raleigh, North Carolina, and Charleston, South Carolina.