FORT PIERCE, Fla. — An economic boom for the boating industry is allowing for a Treasure Coast manufacturer to double in size.
At Maverick Boat Group in Fort Pierce, a new expansion will increase the total space to 212,000 sqft. by the end of next year.
"What we've seen, especially through the pandemic is just the increase in sales," said Cory Dugger, president. "They can't travel like they used to, and they don't want to sit around at home so they're taking that extra income and spending it on boats."
More production calls for more employees.
On Saturday from 9 a.m. to noon, the manufacturer will host a job fair.
Dugger said over time, they plan to hire 150 new employees.
"We're looking for people who are willing to take on new challenges and are really willing to work and grow inside of a company," said Dugger.
To help with the demand for a skilled labor force, Indian River State College is launching a yacht technician program in partnership with several local industry employers.
It's scheduled to launch in January to help feed the pipeline of new jobs.
"It's roughly 4000 hours from start to end, but most of it is on-the-job training," said Kevin Cooper, Dean of Advanced Technology at Indian River State College. "It's designed with various exit points. So, if you need to go to work after rigging and lifting you can exit here and get a job paying XYZ."
"We want to continue to be a staple in this community, an employer of choice, and we believe that investing in this community is the right thing to do," said Dugger.