April 1, 2020 New Gretna, New Jersey — In a special letter on the 56th anniversary of the company, Viking President and CEO Pat Healey updated customers, dealers, vendors and the general public about the boatbuilder’s operating status and strategy going forward during the Coronavirus pandemic.
“Our 56 th anniversary serves as a fitting reminder of our resilience,” Healey said in a statement distributed through the Viking and Valhalla Boatworks e-newsletters. “We have endured many hardships (recessions, storms and the Luxury Tax) since my father Bill and Uncle Bob founded the company in 1964. We build boats – and nothing is going to stop us from doing what we love to do. There is no question. We’ll get through this and come out stronger.”
To mitigate the impact of the Coronavirus (COVID-19), protect the health and safety of its employees and adhere to state and federal guidelines, Viking effective March 19 suspended manufacturing operations for a 14-day period at its New Gretna and Mullica facilities. Viking planned to call its workers back on April 6, but recent developments in the fight against the Coronavirus (particularly President Trump’s extension of the social-distancing) prompted the company to reassess its date to begin manufacturing operations again.
The issue will be discussed on Monday, April 6.
“Our commitment to our customers, dealers and vendors is stronger than ever,” Healey said. During this period, Viking has been carrying out day-to-day operations as Viking staff attend to the needs of
customers, dealers and vendors. Design and Engineering, Sales and Marketing, Customer Service and other key departments continue to build a better boat every day remotely. The company’s operations in Florida remain operational. This includes the Viking Yacht Service Center in Riviera Beach, Florida, as well as the southern arms of the Viking subsidiaries Atlantic Marine Electronics and Palm Beach Towers.
Throughout its history, Viking has prided itself on its commitment to the health, safety and general well-being of its employees. Viking has for many years operated an in-house medical services facility for all employees, which has been on call every day to attend to the needs of employees and their families in this unprecedented time.
The Viking family extends beyond its boatbuilding operations into the communities of southern New Jersey. To support regional medical institutions, Viking has donated a total of 2,650 of the 3M N95 respirator masks as well as 100 Tyvek suits, boots and hoods. “We’re all in this together,” said Healey. “We must do our part to ‘flatten the curve’ so we can return to the boating and fishing lifestyle we all love.”
About the Viking Yacht Company: Founded by brothers Bill and Bob Healey in 1964 on the banks of the Bass River in New Gretna, New Jersey, Viking has become the leading semi-custom production builder of sportfishing and motor yachts in the worlds, with roughly 5,000 boats delivered. The Viking fleet consists of yachts from 38 to 93 feet, and the company recently launched a lineup of outboard-powered center consoles.
A vertically integrated company where 90 percent of every boat is built in-house, Viking operates several subsidiaries, including Palm Beach Towers and Atlantic Marine Electronics. Viking, driven by the mantra “to build a better boat every day,” looks forward to continuing to serve the Viking family with industry-leading products, dealers and customer service.