Business Briefs: Boat builder closes last Knoxville plant

Business Briefs: Boat builder closes last Knoxville plant

October 11th, 2012 by Associated Press and Staff Report in Business Around the Region

Boat builder closes last Knoxville plant

Recreation equipment maker Brunswick Corp. is closing its last Sea Ray Boats plant in a Knoxville industrial park, ending 225 jobs by the end of the year. The company plans to consolidate domestic boat building at its plants in Vonore, Tenn., and Palm Coast, Fla.

In 2009, Brunswick closed two other Sea Ray plants in the same park, ending 540 jobs.

Brunswick Chairman and CEO Dustan E. McCoy said in a prepared statement that while U.S. sales of fishing boats and pontoon boats have increased, demand is still weak for cruisers and larger boats. The Lake Forest, Ill.-based company intends to save $10 million to $12 million per year by consolidating its U.S. cruiser line.

Toshiba raises stake in Westinghouse

Toshiba Corp. is raising its stake in U.S. nuclear power unit Westinghouse Electric despite uncertainty about the future of the technology in Japan after the nuclear disaster in Fukushima. The Japanese electronics maker said Wednesday it will purchase another 20 percent stake from U.S.-based Shaw Group for $1.6 billion, raising Toshiba's ownership to 87 percent.

Westinghouse operates four nuclear reactors in the U.S. and four in China, and is talking with potential partners to expand its business. In 2009, the company opened its U.S. Boiling Water Reactor Service Center in Chattanooga to train Westinghouse employees, customers and industry representatives for maintenance and refueling work on boiling water reactors in the U.S. and Europe.