In 1946, a group of experienced boat builders, Russell Post, Phil Boyd, Harold Care and C.P. Leek, came together to found Egg Harbor Boat Company. Their original model, a 28 foot wooden sea skiff, was designed and built to the highest standards of the time, catering to the more affluent and experienced boaters.
During the 1950's, C.P. Leek purchased the remainder of the company's stock from his partners and merged Egg Harbor with Pacemaker Yachts. By the 1960's, this combined organization had become one of the largest manufacturers of pleasure boats in the country.
Despite being part of Pacemaker Yachts, Inc., Egg Harbor managed to maintain its own identity. While Pacemaker concentrated on manufacturing products for the mid-priced, high volume end of the market, Egg Harbor steadfastly maintained its focus as a limited quantity builder of high quality cruising and sportfishing yachts. Egg Harbor's reputation grew through the 1960's and 1970's, with offerings that ranged in size from 30 to 48 feet. Both companies converted from wood to fiberglass construction during the 1970's.
When it first became fashionable for conglomerates to acquire boat companies, Fuqua Industries purchased Pacemaker Yachts, Inc. (including Egg Harbor) in 1965. Both companies were subsequently sold to Mission Marine & Associates in 1976.
Both Egg Harbor and Pacemaker were profitable business units under their new ownership, however, Mission Marine was a highly leveraged min-conglomerate. The parent company experienced severe financial difficulties when the prime interest rate soared to 20% during 1979. As a result, Mission Marine was forced into Chapter 11 that year.
In 1980, the assets of Egg Harbor Boat Company were purchased by an investor group that included Phil Boyd, Jr. and Donald Leek (both sons of the original founders), Peter and Walt Johnson, Jr. (second generation owners of Johnson & Towers, Inc.) and Robert Traenkle (a Pennsylvania businessman and boating enthusiast).
Phil Boyd retired as President of Egg Harbor during 1983 and Rudy Lehnert, an Aeronautical Engineer and avid sportfisherman, purchased Boyd's stock and joined the company as Vice President of Engineering. At this time, Traenkle became President and James Mercanto, formerly Vice President of Marketing & Sales, became General Manager.
Through the 1980's, Egg Harbor invested heavily in new product development, refreshing and expanding the breadth of its line from 33 to 60 feet.
With steadily increasing sales and profitability, the owners prepared to sell shares in the company through an initial public offering. This plan, however, was aborted when the stock market experienced a severe adjustment on what became known as Black Monday, during mid-October, 1987. In reaction, Robert Traenkle agreed to purchase all shares of Egg Harbor Yacht Company through a structured transaction initiated in 1988.
Under now consolidated ownership, the company launched an aggressive new product development program. This culminated in the Golden Egg Series, introduced early in the 1990 model year, which featured four new cruising/sportfishing models as well as two new Aft Cabin cruising models.
While these products were well accepted by the market, the timing for this investment proved fatal. The market for new boat sales soon plunged as a result of a general economic recession, a new luxury goods tax and cumulative overbuilding by the entire industry.
In spite of Egg Harbor's successful performance during the 1980's, the company was unable to service the relatively high level of debt it had accumulated as a combined result of the stock purchase and its aggressive investment in new product development.
This situation prompted Traenkle's former partners to repossess the company and voluntarily file for protection under Chapter 11 of the Federal Bankruptcy Code, during January 1990.
Egg Harbor Yacht Company, Inc.. emerged from its Chapter 11 proceedings in March, 1992, when the courts approved the company's re-organization plan. The ownership of Egg Harbor then consisted of Donald Leek, Peter and Walt Johnson, Jr. and Rudy Lehnert, who managed the company as president with the help of Robert Hazard the general manager during that transitional period.
In November 1997 Egg Harbor ceased operations. A group called Marine Acquisitions had acquired the company 18 months prior for all debt and no equity. The level of debt turned out to be so high the company couldn't continue operations -- even though it had orders for more than 18 boats.
Almost two years after the date of closure, a South Jersey plastic surgeon, real estate developer and entrepreneur, Dr. Ira M. Trocki, purchased the assets of Egg Harbor Yachts. Trocki, also a boater and fisherman in his spare time, bought a new 58 foot Egg Harbor and loved the boat so much he decided to buy the company. Dr. Trocki immediately went to work assembling a veteran team of yacht building professionals. Robert J. Weidhaas as Chief Operating Officer, William Walling as Production Manager and Robert A. Hazard as Director of Sales & Marketing. Trocki immediately revamped the factory, installing new heating and air conditioning, new roof, commercial garage doors, new manufacturing equipment and the list goes on and on spending over $10 million. The company operates debt free and with his hands on approach and ownership style, Trocki is committed to building the finest sportyachts in the industry. "I am used to creating fine lines and perfection in my practice, it is only natural for me to carry that perfection over to our yacht building techniques", Trocki continues. Within a year Dr. Trocki purchased other boat builders, Revenge Yachts and Predator Custom Yachts, and immediately moved the companies to Egg Harbor City, NJ for the ease of combined manufacturing.
Egg Harbor Yachts is producing 35,37,42 and 52 foot sportyachts with 49 and 65 foot models in the near future.