By: Scott Way
During an interview with new Limestone CEO Scott Hanson in September 2020, the company figurehead mentioned the revitalized Limestone would be manufactured in Tennessee. When discussing why it was a fit for the Canadian brand, Hanson told us : "I want to ensure the future of the Limestone brand, an iconic Canadian brand designed by Mark Ellis and built by the Medeiros family, and that future would be best served if we were to establish a relationship with a reputable boat builder centrally located, with strong supply chain relationships, that could be leveraged to ensure the product can evolve, can be competitively priced, and can flourish."
Limestone has now solidified a relationship with a centrally located manufacturer, Ebbtide Holdings in White Bluff, TN, to give them full control of their destiny moving forward.
With the acquisition of Ebbtide, the company will retain control over the design, manufacturing, sales, and distribution of the Limestone brand, as well as the Aquasport and Boca Bay brands currently part of the existing Ebbtide portfolio.
According to Hanson, "Our goal is also to build on the current team in White Bluff, TN, expanding on the company’s skilled labor force, creating a place that our people not only want to come to for work, but brands that they take pride in producing. We are now on our way to achieving these goals with our expanded team and the resources to invest in our people and our products.”
The details of the purchase include a 100% ownership of the issued and outstanding securities of Ebbtide, which include US $3.75 million in cash and US $2.5 million in Limestone common shares at a price of CDN $0.33 per share. Limestone also arranged a concurrent loan worth $14 million to fund the cash portion of the purchase and to provide the company with operating capital going forward. This portion, qualified as a "private placement," includes an investment from a strategic industry participant.
Ebbtide has over 40 years of manufacturing experience in Tennessee and currently builds the Aquasport and Boca Bay brands, as well as the Limestone model lineup under the previous contract, inside a 145,000 square foot manufacturing facility. The acquisition of the facility will enhance Limestone's ability to meet growing market demand while supporting their over 50 dealer locations throughout the East Coast, Gulf Coast of the US, and their original territory in the Great Lakes region of Ontario, Canada. In November 2020, the company announced 13 new North American dealers.
“The acquisition of Ebbtide Holdings is a keystone transaction in the continued growth of our Company,” said Hanson. “The combination of heritage brands Limestone and Aquasport provides continuity in reputation for safety, performance and quality, coupled with the addition of Boca Bay, and potential resurrection of the Ebbtide brands further diversifying the Company's product offerings. Our team members in Collingwood, Ontario will be responsible for directing product development and North American sales, marketing, distribution, and finance, allowing the team in Tennessee to focus on the manufacturing of quality, performance boats that retailers and consumers alike can count on, backed by a limited lifetime, transferable warranty consumers would expect. By securing expanded manufacturing capacity and a broad dealer network, we are well positioned to become a growing force in the North American marine industry.”
The company released their first new model since reorganizing with the L- 200CC in April 2021. With today's announcement Limestone be poised to deliver even more quality designs through Canada and the United States. You can check out the all-new L-200CC in the video below: