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New boat builder moving into industrial park in Navassa

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By Brian Slattery

A new business, and a potential for 50 new jobs, are coming to Navassa.

Economic Development Director Jim Bradshaw announced the company, 33rd Strike Group, intends to move into northern Brunswick County in May.

The catamaran manufacturer will locate in a 35,000-square-foot building in the Brunswick Industrial Warehouse complex near Navassa.

Paul Miller, a representative of 33rd Strike Group, announced they were making the move to Brunswick County official at the Joint Economic Development Boards’ annual meeting March 5.

The joint economic development board is a collaboration between the Brunswick County Economic Development Commission, the Brunswick County Commissioners and the Economic Development Foundation to discuss economic development goals for 2014.

“Our mission is to bring affordable boating back to the market place in the form of a quality Aluminum Catamaran,” Miller said in comments to the boards.

“We have already contracted Immortology, a marketing firm based in Chapel Hill. Their mission will be in the development and implementation of branding and marketing strategies, ensuring a successful product launch for the 33rd Strike Group which intends to begin operations at the new facility May 1.”

Bradshaw said the company plans to hire 50 people over the next few years.

Jeff Gross, a company salesman, released a statement on the boat builders’ move.

He thanked Bradshaw, saying he was “instrumental in our relocating to Brunswick County industrial park off Mt. Misery Road.”

“Jim has always been available and accessible as we try to insource rather than outsource jobs to the U.S and Brunswick County,” Gross said.

Brunswick County’s connections to major highways and proximity to the Port of Wilmington, as well as the support received from the county’s economic development officials, influenced the move, Gross said.

The company has partnered with Hudson Wang of Taiwan to manufacture components, then send them to 33rd Strike Group by container for final assembly.

Brian Slattery is a staff writer for the Beacon. Reach him at 754-6890 or bslattery@brunswickbeacon.com.