New MD of Oundle’s Fairline Yachts says “they will do it right” – but Corby base is to close

Fairline's Oundle base.
Fairline's Oundle base.
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The new managing director of Oundle’s luxury boat building firm Fairline Yachts has pledged to take on former workers – but confirmed the imminent closure its Corby base.

A deal was struck to see the assets of Fairline Boats brought out of administration for an undisclosed sum.

New Fairline MD Russell Currie NNL-160126-095919001

New Fairline MD Russell Currie NNL-160126-095919001

The firm went into administration in December, putting 450 jobs under threat.

A Fairline dealer since 1998, Russell Currie is CEO of Fairline North Mallorca, where he has achieved more than £90m in sales.

And he has encouraged skilled workers to get in touch, with about 100 jobs available immediately.

He told the Northants Telegraph: “We will continue to match the amount of people needed and sales came in moments after yesterday’s announcement.

“The trade we are in is a very skilled business and we welcome applications from any skilled workers, including those from Fairline.

“We have already had commitments from 55 dealers.

“Corby is not that far away from Oundle but the base there will be shutting down.

“We have the option of three months there and will finish boats there that investors have already committed to.

“Many of these will be at a loss but we want to show our integrity to investors out there.”

Asked about intentions to sort out the pension problems after it was claimed that pension contributions were not paid for three months, Mr Currie said: “You’d have to ask the administrators about that.

“We bought the assets, not the company.”

Mr Currie added that Fairline Yachts is open to expanding but warned it will not be in the short or medium-term.

He added: “We are open to building the company up again but that will not be until we reach our full capacity.

“Realistically we’ll be looking to build 30 boats in year one and 50 in year two, so expanding will be something that we could look at in the long-term.

“We want to be a substantial employer in the area and will go way above any other boat builder.”

The new company is owned by two long-term UK-based Russian investors, who are said to be both highly experienced in managing and developing marine businesses and in the production of high technology products, IT and media services.

Mr Currie says that their biggest aim is to secure Fairline’s future and “do it right”, and are open to discussions with trade unions.

He added: “Our management team all have the resources, knowledge and skills, having been in the game for at least 10 years, and will be vital to securing Fairline’s future.

“We’re open to speaking to Unite or any other trade union but in terms of employment we will do everything as we should.

“Our focus is on doing it right.”

To apply for a job at Fairline Yachts, email jobs@fairline.com.

Urgent talks have been called for by Unite on the future direction of the firm.

Unite regional officer Mick Orpin said: “We are currently digesting the implications of what this means for employment and we would like to discuss the business model that the new management team envisages.

“We will be seeking urgent talks with the company as how many of the 374 workers made redundant when the company went into administration will be re-employed.

“We believe that Fairline Boats is a high-premium brand with a dedicated, long-serving workforce with a viable future. We urge the management to work with Unite to achieve this goal.”