Industry veteran Craig Barrie has joined Statement Marine in St. Petersburg, Fla. He will work closely with company principals Todd Werner and Nick Buis in expanding the sales of all Statement center console, V-bottom and catamaran models, as well work with longtime associate Josh Stickles in the development of marketing and media plans for the company.
“Statement’s co-founders, Nick Buis and Todd Werner, are hands-on owners who have built this company to the point where it’s ready to be taken to the next level,” said Barrie in a press release from Statement. “They have created a talented team, built an impressive product line, and they’ve delivered a surprising number of boats by selling them one at a time. We’re now creating what will be the very best dealer network in all of high-performance boating, to extend the reach of that hands-on approach to performance boaters worldwide.”
Speedonthewater.com contacted Barrie directly this morning.
“I met with Todd and Nick,” said Barrie during a telephone interview. “We mulled it over awhile after our meeting and then they called me and asked, ‘Why don’t we do something together?’ I said, ‘You certainly have all the right ingredients,’ and that was it. At this point in my career, I am not into ‘titles’ but basically I am going to be the guy in charge of sales and, along with Josh, who I got to know when we were both working for Donzi, developing our marketing program.”
A former world champion offshore racer, Barrie has a long history in the marine industry. He joined Cigarette Racing Team in 1984 and served as its chief executive officer from 1992 to 1999. While at Cigarette, he also owned and ran Hawk Power Marine, a go-fast boat engine company. Barrie also formed his own custom high-performance boat company, Dragon Powerboats.
Several years later, Barrie became the vice president of sales and marketing for Donzi Marine. His role at Donzi expanded significantly when the line was solid to an investment group that had acquired the Fountain and Baja sportboat lines. Well-covered in the media, the litigation and resulting production stoppages that ensued after Donzi and Pro-Line were relocated to Washington, N.C., kept Barrie sidelined for most of the past two years.
According to Barrie, the No. 1 criterion for consideration as a Statement dealer will be industry expertise. “We’re going to add experienced dealers who know high-performance boating inside and out, and who place a strong emphasis on service,” he said in the release.
To that end Statement has added new dealers Aqua-Mania of Alexandria Bay, N.Y.; Erickson Marine of Sarasota, Fla.; Fastboats Marine Group of Aventura and Pompano Beach, Fla., and Ocean Performance of Old Saybrook, Conn. The new dealers join existing Florida-based Statement dealers New Boats Direct and St Petersburg, Fla., dealer Pro Marine USA.
Barrie also has brought aboard Blane Aarup, a marine industry sales expert formerly representing Donzi and Baja, to assist in Statement’s dealer outreach.
“Dealer interest in Statement has been extraordinary,” Barrie said. “Blane and I are in discussions with several U.S. and international dealers now and we’ll be meeting with several more in Miami. We are actively looking to expand Statement’s sales reach by implementing dealer-friendly programs and practices, and in addition to the new dealers announced today, we will be announcing additional dealers shortly.”
Barrie will be heavily involved in Statement’s product development efforts, as well, a role he also reportedly took on when he joined Donzi.
“We have taken an in-depth look at Statement’s offerings and the product line will continue to evolve and lead the latest market trends,” said Barrie in the release. “Statement will once again turn heads at the Miami International Boat Show, where we’ll be bringing a 50’ cat powered by twin Mercury Racing 1350s, a 42’ Ultimate that stars in an upcoming movie that our marketing director Josh Stickles has been working on, our first quad-engine 38’ center console built for another longtime marine industry friend Bob Christie, and a very nicely equipped 35’ center console. We have revamped our entire pricing structure and are making significant additions to the standard and optional features lists of every boat in the Statement lineup.”