Published September 27, 2010, 12:50 PM

Lund Boats brings Crestliner production to New York Mills

Formerly located in Little Falls, Lund Boat Company has brought their Crestliner plant to New York Mills.

By: Christopher D. Michalski, East Otter Tail Focus

Formerly located in Little Falls, Lund Boat Company has brought their Crestliner plant to New York Mills.

The merger may create jobs in New York Mills after layoffs in recent years.

Roughly 180 positions will be affected at the Little Falls plant, said Dan Kubera, director of media relations at Brunswick. He anticipates about half of those positions may be transferred to NY Mills.

The Crestliner facility in Little Falls will phase down production and close by the end of the year, according to a Brunswick Corporation news release.

Boats currently built in Little Falls will now be built in the New York Mills facility with their new welding production lines.

Dirk Hyde, president of Lund Boat Company, noted that with a struggling boat industry, the New York Mills facility allows leverage by utilizing the excess capacities in NY Mills.

Hyde anticipates initial prototypes for the Crestliner boats will appear around April.

“This is going to be a well-managed process and we’ll make sure we do it right,” Hyde said.

“For the past several years, we have worked hard to institute more flexibility into our boat-making capabilities,” explained Brunswick Chairman and CEO Dustan E. McCoy.

“We have been steadily moving toward ‘category’-type production that focuses more on models and segments, rather than the traditional approach of having manufacturing facilities dedicated to a particular brand. As a result, we are more competitive, offering better value and quality products for boaters.”

The Little Falls facility will begin to slow down production in May and is expected to complete the process in the fall. The company said it is working with local community leaders and government organizations to help with the transition of affected employees.

“This is a consolidation of manufacturing facilities and not a reflection on the Little Falls facility or workforce. We’re approaching this as a merger of facilities.”

Brunswick, the parent company of Lund Boats, said the reasons for the merger include the fact the company has excess capacity within the Brunswick manufacturing footprint, published in a press release.

Despite U.S. marine retail sales hitting their lowest level in nearly 40 years, Brunswick made significant progress during 2009 in reducing its inventory pipeline to historically low levels, and improving its overall financial structure.

Partnership in New York Mills

Monahan’s Marine, just right outside of the city limits of NY Mills, is supplying Shorelander Boat trailers the for Lund and Crestliner lines. They are full retail for trailers, Power Sport trailers, docks and lifts.

The new Monahan’s Marine location in NY Mills started on the first of August, and hired six full-time employees from the NY Mills area.

According to Tom Monahan, the business hired electricians, plumbers, and well drilling services from the NY Mills area. They also purchased lumber from a local area business.

“I’m very delighted to be back and affiliated with the marine industry, servicing the Brunswick corporation,” Monahan said.

“We received a very warm welcome from people in town. Everyone’s been friendly and we’ve received such a warm welcome. It’s a pleasure to have a great team and we’re grateful to be here,” Monahan furthered.

Monahan’s Marine also has a facility near Little Falls, located four miles south on Route 10.

Formerly known as Monahan’s Larson Motor Service, the business has been number one for Crestline Boats for over twenty years and in the top 10 for Larson retail sales.

For more information on the Brunswick corporation, please visit their website at www.brunswick.com.

For further information on Monahan’s Marine, you can visit their website at www.monahansmarine.biz.

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The East Otter Tail Focus and the Echo Press are Forum Communications Company newspapers.

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