Rosborough Boats, a family-owned, third-generation Canadian boatbuilder based in Beechville, Nova Scotia, has received C$500,000 from the federal government via its Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA) business development programme for a new line of rigid-hulled inflatable boats (RHIBs).

According to The Chronicle Herald, the funding will assist with the design, tooling and creation of moulds and increase opportunities for export sales.

Rosborough Boats has previously built vessels for Environment Canada, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) and the Canadian Coast Guard. In March, the company won a lucrative C$7.3m contract to produce 12 8.5m RHIBs for the Royal Canadian Navy’s new fleet of Arctic Offshore Patrol Ships (AOPS) being constructed by Irving Shipbuilding.

Heaton Rosborough, president of Rosborough Boats, told The Chronicle Herald the first of those 8.5m RHIBs will be ready for sea trials by late September. But Rosborough said the funding goes beyond the vessels it is building for the navy.

“The first level of engineering and tooling is AOPS boats, but then we’re going further with that with the ACOA project,” he said. “It’s going to encompass basically a whole new line of boats for us on our rough water platform.”

Established in 1955, Rosborough Boats builds semi-custom vessels from 6m-10m – mostly for commercial applications but also private leisure clients. The company originally designed and built fully custom wooden sailing yachts ranging in size and style. In the late 1970s, Rosborough changed direction into commercial fishing and economical cruising yachts.

Today, Rosborough Boats is owned and operated by Bob and Heaton Rosborough, the son and grandson of founder James Rosborough, respectively.