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Old 22-10-2016, 07:17   #31
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Re: Antares at Annapolis Sailboat Show?

Originally Posted by jclark500 View Post
I am glad to see some information coming to light on this matter. I had sailed on a used boat in Charleston in June with the marketing group of Antares. Prepared to send them a $500k deposit for a June 17 delivery for an owner looking to sell his position. Should have alerted me at that juncture that they did not offer any current owners the option to move forward. Received notice a week after my return and a few days before sending them my deposit check of the financial difficulties. That was too close for comfort, but several folks were caught up in the turmoil and have done what was necessary to protect their interests. Glad to see that a good boat builder has manged to work through a difficult process.

I was invited to sail onboard a St. Francis 50 being delivered from South Africa to the Annapolis show and boarded her in St Lucia up to the BVI's and then Georgetown. Was planning to make an offer when my wife visited Annapolis show recently.

My wife was ok with the St. Francis and fully supporting my dream, although not 100% sure of this lifestyle. While negotiating with the owner of St. Francis during the opening days, my wife happened on board the newly launched Xquisite X5. She came and grabbed me and said " you have to see this boat". The couple, Sara and Ramas, have exclusive marketing rights for the boat manufactured in South Africa by Phoenix Marine (took over the assets of Dean Cats). They have brought on the Naval Architect from the former company to oversee the redesign and launch of this new product, Rudolf Jonker.

I had a LOI for Hull #2 that was showing in Annapolis, when a nice couple from Florida came on board and wondered if they could purchase our position as they had a need for tax reasons to purchase this year. We were happy to comply and took on Hull 3 which is scheduled to splash in February 2017. The Admiral (she hates that nickname, but hasn't come up with a better one) fell in love with Sara as much as the boat. These are the kind of people you want to be friends with. They have an interesting concept for avoiding the kind of risk that i am extremely sensitive to regarding boat build progress payments. They have a financial backer that allows them to offer "in-house" financing with a 5% deposit and payments into an independent escrow account until acceptance. That was a huge reason for me to get comfortable with this structure, given my near miss with Antares.

They have sold 3 boats in 3 weeks, one at the Cannes boat show and two last week in Annapolis. Hull 4 is sold and I imagine they will have a backlog after the Miami show in February.

I am not receiving any compensation or otherwise from these nice folks. Just wanted to share my experience over this 8 month journey.

Long time lurker, first time poster. Cheers, jc
Great post JC. Thats a Helluva boat for sure. A bit much on the design for me BUT the finance plan with independent escrow account is a great business model...thus the sales. I hope the competition is paying attention.
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