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Chichester: Oceanair founder Andy Fitzgerald wins Lifetime Achievement Award

By Dan Teuton
19 January 2018

British Marine hosted the annual British Marine Trade Association Awards dinner, following the first day of the London Boat Show 2018. It was an opportunity to celebrate the achievements of leading personalities and companies in the industry.

Andy-FitzgeraldThere were a range of awards on offer from the British Marine Trades Association and industry publication Boating Business.

The highlight of the night was the Boating Business “Lifetime Achievement Award”, which was presented to founder and managing director of Oceanair, Andy Fitzgerald. The award acknowledged Fitzgerald’s lifetime in the boating industry, the past 27 years of which he created an international company from his front room, establishing a globally recognised brand. Oceanair has evolved to employ over 200 staff across two continents and become the industry leader in its field. He helped to turn the inside of boats into the stylish and comfortable craft that modern boaters require, developing a range of new products to suit the consumer.

Dedicated to creating high-quality, innovative solutions suitable for everything from entry level cruisers to superyachts and more recently, luxury properties. His commitment to manufacturing both custom and production products within the UK has allowed the business to remain at the forefront of design and technical advancements within the industry. Originally a student of the Southampton ‘Yacht and Boatyard Management’ course, Fitzgerald has worked in marinas, boat repair, boatbuilding (in wood, GRP, steel and aluminium), as a yacht salesman and equipment manufacturer.

Katina Read, editor of Boating Business, said: “It’s not often we hear of someone starting a company in their garage, building it up and then selling it 25 years’ later for £16.5 million. Andy has proved himself to be a hugely successful businessman and a worthy recipient of the Boating Business Lifetime Achievement Award. Congratulations to Andy and the team at Oceanair.”

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