Palmer Johnson's investment on the South Coast could create 800 jobs 9/4/08

SEEDA, the South East England Development Agency, has secured American super-yacht company Palmer Johnson’s investment in the Solent against fierce international competition. Palmer Johnson will build a range of multi-million pound, bespoke, super yachts up to 100 metres. These will be the largest leisure craft in production in the UK.

Palmer Johnson will construct a state-of-the-art manufacturing facility on SEEDA’s sites at Woolston and open a new manufacturing facility at Hythe in the New Forest.

800 skilled jobs will be created by this iconic company, which began as a builder of wooden fishing boats for the Great Lakes in 1918. Within 10 years they had developed their first wooden yachts and are now an established builder of highly styled, aluminium super yachts.

“Attracting a large, successful international marine company like Palmer Johnson to the Solent was part of SEEDA’s strategy with partners to secure continued future economic growth for this important sub region. Palmer Johnson is a strong global brand and we are pleased to welcome them to one of Europe’s key centre’s for marine,” commented Jim Brathwaite, SEEDA Chairman

The decision to expand in the Solent follows the setting up of a design office at East Cowes, on the Isle of Wight, last year. The new facility at Woolston Riverside will open in 2009. In the meantime, Palmer Johnson will build prototype vessels at Hythe Marine Park.

This investment will generate significant spin off benefits for the marine industry’s supply chain and local people.