US boatbuilder Hacker-Craft has chosen Thailand-based Classic Boats Lifestyle (CBL) as an official dealer. A family-owned and operated business, CBL will exclusively represent Hacker-Craft in Southeast Asia, including Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam, Malaysia, Singapore and Burma/Myanmar.

CBL has also purchased five Hacker-Craft as an initial investment. Potential clients include individuals, luxury hotels and clubs and other commercial ventures.

“Increasingly, wealthy people are buying waterfront houses in Phuket,” says a CBL spokesperson. “Southeast Asia in general is being recognised as an emerging boating market. We are certain there is a market for Hacker-Craft in our region.

CBL says it will attend all major boat shows in the region and establish a waterfront showroom/sales facility to showcase the boats.

George Badcock, CEO of Hacker-Craft, says: “CBL has the resources and drive to introduce Hacker-Craft on a region-wide basis. Recent articles in such publications as Superyacht Times and Asia Times cited Thailand, notably Phuket, and other Southeast Asia locales for their emerging boating and yachting markets; in the past month major yachting firms have announced plans to opens facilities in the region. It really is almost a ground-floor opportunity for us.

“We are excited about our new partnership with CBL and their expanding our brand in SE Asia.”

Hacker-Craft is not new to the Thailand market. In 1930 King Rama VII, the ruler of Siam (now Thailand) commissioned a 38ft Hacker-Craft custom commuter. The interior cabin was outfitted with gold fixtures and the boat was paid for in gold bullion. It is still owned by the royal family and is housed in the royal boathouse in Bangkok.

Hacker Boat Company claims to be the largest US manufacturer of classic mahogany motorboats, and hand-builds runabouts, sport boats, yacht tenders, launches and utilities. The company is based in Lake George, New York.