In an official statement, American superyacht builder, Palmer Johnson Yachts has announced their plans to relocate their manufacturing facilities to the Netherlands, confirming that their American facility will close its doors by the end of October with the loss of 100 jobs.
The relocation of the Palmer Johnson facility comes as part of the yard’s strategic plan to increase its production of the new carbon SuperSport series. Declining sales and escalating offshore competition also contributed to the closure of the Sturgeon Bay shipyard.
The company reports that the second hull of the PJ48 carbon series, currently located in Norway, is due to be moved to the Netherlands to be completed. Hull number three will follow in April 2016, with construction of the moulds for the first 42m in the series already underway for delivery in late 2017.
In the statement, Palmer Johnson Yachts said, “There has been strong interest in the SuperSport range, and the company will gain significant competitive advantages by building the next generation of yachts in Europe.”
The Sturgeon Bay facility will close upon the completion of hull number three of the PJ170 yacht, which is currently under construction at the yard. With this, it is thought that some of the yard’s current employees will be included in the move to the Netherlands in order to retain build standards and make the relocation as seamless as possible.
Palmer Johnson Yachts continued, “We are disappointed and saddened by this business closing, and yet realise there is not alternative. We estimate complete closure of the facilities in the fourth quarter of this year, and obviously no bumping rates will be in effect.”