On 30 September 2021, Ross Pratt & Oriens Capital Fund 2 LP completed the acquisition of Nautical Group Holdings Limited (NGH), a New Zealand entity that has acquired 100% of the shares of Railblaza Limited and NTD Plastics Limited.
The directors of the board of NGH are Ross Pratt, Railblaza founder and continuing shareholder of NGH, Peter Tinholt of Oriens Capital and Nigel Jeffries as co-investor with Oriens Capital and chairman. Marc Michel, a highly experienced senior executive, has been appointed as the new CEO of NGH which will see Ross Pratt transition out of his operational role over the next few months whilst remaining as a director and adviser. Mike Edgington has been appointed General Manager of Railblaza and has assumed full responsibility for all day-to-day operations reporting to Marc.
Michel commenced with NGH in early October and brings many years of marine industry and technology executive experience, at companies such as Navman, Brunswick New Technologies, BCS Group and Mastip Technology, and the board is confident that with Marc leading NGH and with the support of Oriens Capital that the group has an exciting future.
Michel commented “We are super excited to have Railblaza and NTD as the foundation portfolio companies to prove our investment strategy with further acquisitions to come. The group aims to achieve a dominant market position for each of its niche portfolio brands whilst accelerating an innovation focus with speed to market and with the group assisting portfolio companies to build out governance and corporate functions to a higher level of maturity to support global growth. The group will capitalise on a broad range of well-developed relationships with global distributors, partners and customers supplying best in class solutions”
Railblaza was founded by Ross Pratt in 2010 following the sale of his previous marine electrical business, now owned by Brunswick Corporation. Railblaza has grown to be a leading brand, internationally positioned across small-end marine, off the beach and paddle sports accessories.
The business offers a wide range of products, but core product lines include kayak carts, rod holders and a range of innovative and unique mounts, made from reinforced plastic, stainless steel and anodized aluminium. The mounts have a huge number of applications and form part of a unique product ecosystem for the other accessories. Products are sold under the Railblaza and C-Tug brands
and can be found in all major marine markets. Railblaza sells via a well-established distributor network of 40+ distributors in 48 countries, sales are generated through retailers and sales to OEM boat builders’ operations and a growing ecommerce channel.
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About Nautical Group Holdings:
Nautical Group Holdings Limited (NGH), is a new entity that has acquired all the shares of Railblaza Limited and NTD Plastics Limited. The group aims to achieve a dominant market position for each of its niche portfolio brands whilst accelerating an innovation focus with speed to market whilst assisting portfolio companies to build out governance and corporate functions to a higher level of maturity to support growth. It will capitalise on a broad range of well-developed relationships with global distributors, partners and customers supplying best in class solutions. NGH is backed by Oriens Capital Fund 2 LP, Ross Pratt and portfolio management investors.
RAILBLAZA products are so versatile, and great value for money. StarPorts can be mounted just about anywhere, and because they’re made in New Zealand, the quality is fantastic” What sets RAILBLAZA apart from its competition is the simplicity of our StarPortTM mount, the ease with which people fit it, and the diverse range of situations it’s used in. Super strong, all RAILBLAZA parts are made from high quality, UV stabilized, engineering polymers, stainless steel and anodised aluminium. Where extra strength is required, the polymers used are fiberglass reinforced. We’re committed to making people’s lives easier, by providing diverse, flexible and user-friendly mounting systems and accessories to the marine, RV and farming sectors internationally. We have proven this commitment by a process of continuous refinement of our product line, excellent customer service, continuous improvement and made in NZ quality. www.railblaza.com