Understanding that you're the guys selling the boat and, therefore, are somewhat biased on the subject, how will production in the U.S. differ, if at all, from production overseas. For example, is there any sense that you'll run into any problems much like J Boats ran into problems when it began manufacturing its 109s in Rhode Island rather than France?
I am not familiar with the problems that Jboats had building the J109.
We have now worked on the Pogo 2 project for 8 months. We basically started to talk to Pogo Structures and Finot/Conq at the 2009 Paris Boat show last winter. Since then, many many phone calls and emails were exchanged. I also spend some time in France early July to review more production details with the French, directly at the builder. The molds were shipped with some delays, and we are being schedule but the first hull is now in production as we speak. Later this month, the production manager of Pogo Structures will spend 10 days with us to help us out and control the quality of the first boat. This is obviously a learning process but, honestly
, I think we have covered all aspects of the production details and are making sure that the U.S. built Pogo 2 will be the exact copy of the French one.
- We are not rushing the project. As mentioned, it has been 8 months since we started.
- We have had a great relationship with Finot/Conq Group for the past 3 years now. They really helped us out with plans, drawings and technical advice.
- Pogo Structures is very involved in the project. They obviously know the boat very well and the transfer of knowledge is smooth, but a bit slow.
- We have spent time in France to better understand some details of the production.
- We are using the original Pogo 2 molds. This is very important.
- We speak are bilingual French / English so we are not getting lost in translation.
- Columbia Yachts is a great builder and pay great attention to all details. We have been very successful in building the Open 5.70 in the USA with Columbia Yachts. We are hoping the same with the Pogo 2.
- Other aspects of the boats: hardware, spars, lines is also very well controlled and again, will be identical to the French build Pogo 2.
- Finally, while in France, we met some of the Classe Mini officers and they approved the project. One of the officer will actually fly to Los Angeles and also make sure the Pogo 2 is the same as the French one and approve U.S. built boats.
- Regarding export, we are still working on the numbers. Pogo Structures will still be able to support European sailors and provide spare parts to them. In addition, we are going to offer an export price to Europe. We will most likely not make a dime on the export boats but will still be able to offer a quality, fast built Pogo2.
Hope this answer the question...or did I miss it entirely?