Kings of the sea

Three key traits define the Norwegian luxury motorboat manufacturer, Marex. Modern craftsmanship, motorboat longevity, and impeccable designs have all come together to ensure the continued success experienced by the company, which has been in operation since 1973. Founded by Eyvin Aalrud, today, Marex remains a family-owned business, with Eyvin’s sons – Espen and Thomas – in charge.

Land, Sea & Air got in touch with Espen, the CEO, who unravels the reasons behind Marex’s ongoing growth. “The high quality we maintain in our production process is a major factor,” he begins. “Our employees have an excellent sense for the boats we are building, because the majority of them are keen boaters themselves, so they possess an in-depth knowledge of what a good vessel needs.

“Another important point is that we often refresh our range by renewing the models we have created, taking hundreds of customer requirements into consideration. This combination of broad-ranging expertise on our part, customer guidelines, and strong design capabilities, has proven to be the winning formula for Marex over the years.”

At this moment in time, the range of boats offered by the company consists of seven different models, their length varying from 21ft to 37.5ft. Among the most popular of these is the 310 Sun Cruiser, which has become almost synonymous with Marex, courtesy of its well-thought-out concept and practical design.

The 310 SC impresses with enormous space in the smart wraparound cockpit seating that stretches all the way from the helm position to the passenger seat. Furthermore, both the portside and starboard side can be used as a sun bed, which gives owners the option to have a greater number of friends and family for sleepovers. The boat also has plenty of accommodation below the deck, with the feeling of spaciousness enhanced by the huge companionway door that splits the cockpit area and the lower deck, thus allowing natural light to infiltrate the galley/hallway area.

In the front cabin, the large hull windows provide a spectacular view out – definitely one to wake up to. As to the mid cabin, it has a double berth, a hanging wardrobe, a room to change next to the bed, as well as another large hull window. Between the two cabins, there is also a spacious and well-finished bathroom.

Marex is the developer of the world’s fastest canopy system and the innovation is featured prominently on the 310 SC as well as on the other models. It is used to close the cockpit, which is protected by two sliding sunroofs and the sideparts are curtains hidden in the targa arch. Finally, the boat has two-person helm seats in front of the dashboard and a single seat on the starboard side, creating space for three people facing forward when the vessel is underway.

It was in January this year that Marex launched its latest model to date at the worlds biggest indoor boatshow in Düsseldorf. The 360 Cabriolet Cruiser is a full-planning open cabin cruiser, boasting one of the largest convertible cockpits in its class. Its creation follows the company’s well-established practice of drawing inspiration from its previous models and embedding their working solutions in the new and improved versions. The boat was displayed at boot 2019 in Dusseldorf in January, where it received heaps of praise for its qualities. It has already got a lot of front pages in boat magazines all over the world.

“We are actually one of the most awarded boat producers in Europe, having been presented with multiple prizes for each and every one of our models in the last eight years,” Espen notes. “The Sun Cruiser was named ‘Powerboat of the Year’ at boot 2017 and won the ‘Sportscruisers up to 45ft’ category at the Motor Boat Awards. A year later, its design was singled out at the German Design Award in the transportation category.

“These awards are doing a fantastic job for us, because they have enabled our expansion into new international markets, without us having to invest too much time and money in marketing activities. The truth is that industry recognition is an all-important factor for potential buyers, so we have been able to capitalise on the excellent reputation we have in the motorboat world,” he adds.

In order to produce boats of the highest quality, Marex realises that it needs world-class manufacturing facilities and efficient processes. To this end, the company has adopted a series of lean production techniques and has committed to investing regularly in its infrastructure. Espen elaborates: “Not long ago, we set up a new production hall and purchased a new moulding facility for a combined sum of about three million euros. In these, we have focused on bringing in some environmentally-friendly technologies to improve air circulation and the filtration of hazardous components, for example. Right now, we are looking into another substantial investment of four million euros that will see us buy and develop a second production hall in a short period of time.”

Instrumental to Marex’s successful exploits has been the company’s long-standing and fruitful partnership with its supply chain. One business that has excelled as a reliable provider of lightweight composites that go into various areas of the boat, is 3A Composites Core Materials. Owing to its deep knowledge of Marex’s professional challenges and demands, the Swiss provider has been a trustworthy entity for the manufacturer for a number of years.

“Choosing the right suppliers is absolutely vital, because there are multiple components that we use that are of utmost importance to the functioning of our boats. We are looking for companies that strive for high craftsmanship, just like we do. It is all the better for us if they perform to an even higher standard, because, at the end of the day, customers will see nothing else but our name on their boat,” Espen discusses.

As it plans its route forward, the company makes sure that its actions are aligned with prevalent market trends and consumer preferences. Considerations for the environment occupy a central place in the design of Marex’s two new models that are scheduled to be launched in the coming months. “These will be boats that are based on some ideas we have come up with in the past, but which we are taking to a whole new level, as we adapt our approach to tomorrow’s environmental demands and customers’ requirements for more comfort and practicality on board,” Espen says.

“The expansion of our range should help us meet our target of achieving ten per cent growth year-on-year. This will be further supported by our ambition to develop the market in Asia, which is currently showing excellent potential. Nature-wise, there are parts on the continent adorned with insanely beautiful archipelagos, and these are the kind of regions we are looking to get into with our boats,” he brings our conversation to an end, sharing his bright view on Marex’s future

An award-winning manufacturer of motorboats
Achieved 20 per cent growth last year
Recently invested three million euros in new infrastructure