Watertown boat maker lands $43 million Navy contract | Business


WATERTOWN – MetalCraft Marine US, a Kingston, Ontario-based company with manufacturing operations in Watertown, has landed a more than $43 million contract with the US Navy to supply boats to bases around the world.

On Thursday, Senate Majority Leader Charles E. Schumer and U.S. Representative Elise M. Stefanik, R-Schuylerville, announced that MetalCraft had won the Navy’s $43,856,283 contract, the largest ever for the company. ‘business.

“This is a fantastic deal for us,” said Bob Clark, contracts manager for MetalCraft Marine Inc.

The company will manufacture Force Protection Small & Large – known to the Navy as “FPS & FPL” – boats that will be stationed at US military bases around the world to protect and support military personnel.

The company will provide 45 8-meter vessels and 20 12-meter boats, considered slower-speed boats with cabins, Clark said.

The contract will last about five or six years, he said.

The navy was impressed with the company’s design capability and production quality, he said.

The company now employs 18 specially skilled workers in Watertown, with the aim of at least doubling its workforce here.

Prior to awarding this contract, the company attempted to secure three more with the Navy, and that experience helped secure the $43 million prize.

“We learned the lay of the land,” he said, adding that this contract “fits perfectly” for MetalCraft.

Senator Schumer said in a statement that the new contract will allow MetalCraft Marine to create new jobs at its Fisher Road facility in Jefferson County Corporate Park, where it also manufactures a variety of patrol, fire and work boats. high strength aluminum.

David J. Zembiec, CEO of Jefferson County Economic Development, knew the company was on hold for a few major contracts, but didn’t know the deal with the Navy was finalized until news broke Thursday.

“That’s great,” he said. “It’s another world-class business we have in Jefferson County.”

In 2020, MetalCraft moved from some smaller facilities in Cape Vincent to the Fisher Road plant due to its growth, Zembiec said.

Last April, the company also secured a $554,237 grant from the State Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administration Program to purchase equipment needed for its growth and to help secure contracts with the Navy and Marine Corps. -American coasts, said Mr. Zembiec.

“We have enjoyed a long relationship with the Navy that began in 1998,” Clark said in Senator Schumer’s announcement. “Working closely with dedicated Navy personnel has helped make our company a very high-tech, high-quality boat builder. We work as great partners together.

Senator Schumer said MetalCraft had proven in the past that it could provide “superior products to the military”, so he was not surprised the company had won another Navy contract.

He also promised to work with MetalCraft in the future.

“This well-deserved contract will not only help protect our troops around the world, but it will also boost the North Country economy and create jobs,” said Senator Schumer.

Rep. Stefanik said she’s proud that MetalCraft’s work has been recognized and will continue to support its work with the Navy.

In 2020, the company purchased the 14,600 square foot manufacturing facility at 22620 Fisher Road for $800,000 from a real estate company owned by the Purcell family.

Working on Navy and Coast Guard contracts, the company is once again outgrowing its Fisher Road building, so it intends to use the space it had in Cape Vincent for some of its work, said Mr. Clark.

Operating from a smaller structure in Cape Vincent for a few years, MetalCraft needed more space to expand, and the Fisher Road building became available.

That summer, the company also attracted attention when an unusual-looking boat turned heads when it was spotted in the St. Lawrence River near Cape Vincent, without anyone lead him. The prototype unmanned vessel was built for the US Coast Guard.

This boat is now leased for a research project.

The company also manufactures about 50 vessels for the Coast Guard.

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