Business For Sale: Cardiff Cruises Boat

If you are ready to become your own boss, take ownership of your future and enjoy a life on the waters of Cardiff Bay then read on and get in touch

History and Reason Business for Sale

The Cardiff Cruises originally started out in 2008 as HMS69 Party Boats focusing on the stag/hen and birthday market. In 2015 the decision was made to concentrate efforts in Cardiff as opposed to trying to expand into a range of cities across the UK. The company decided to diversify its range of services for passengers in Cardiff and added a range of sightseeing tours to its offering and this change in direction is the reason for the business for sale.

Having successfully carried out this rebrand and change of focus the company now consistently makes a turnover of £125,000, with a net profit of £30,000 and passenger numbers have increased to 13,000 which we consider to be very high considering the boat has a limited capacity of 50.  

Marketing and Advertising

The main sources of marketing remain the website, with facebook, twitter and trip advisor also being used. The email database has over 10,000 email addresses and printed leaflets are distributed to outlets throughout South Wales in the run up to the beginning of the season and topped up throughout.  The company also has a strong relationship with various third party companies who resell its services on a commission basis.

Operations and Staff

The majority of employees are on freelance contracts, with one seasonal full time boatmaster and several freelance boatmasters used from time to time to help out over peak months and their details can be provided. At this moment all employees are looking forward to returning to the company as the season once again begins and are helping out at times throughout the winter.

The boat of course has the appropriate passenger certificates and relevant licenses to operate and a program of planned works for 2017 is in place to install seating on the roof increasing the capacity to 80+ passengers.  The hull is in great seaworthy condition having been ultrasonic tested in 2015, the new main engine was installed in 2013 and a new generator installed in 2016.

The Sale Details

The actual agreement is for this business for sale of the steel passenger boat ‘Marianne of Manchester’ (details are here on the private charter page) and the sale, along with the boat, will include:

  • All marketing materials such as leaflets and graphics as well as the display stand at Mermaid Quay
  • Control of the facebook page (3000+ likes) twitter (1000+ followers) tripadvisor (90+ reviews) email database (10,000 addresses) and of course the website which features an integrated online booking system
  • Details of contractors and organisations to ensure a smooth transition as well as training to skipper the boat if required and the transfer of all relevant licenses to ensure the business continues to operate successfully

Financing the Purchase

There are a variety of ways in which this business for sale can take place depending on your personal circumstances.  Ideally it would be a 100% cash sale, however this is unlikely.  Some things you might not be aware of with regards to raising finance is that as this boat is made of steel it has a much longer life than wooden, aluminium or GRP boats and as steel is so strong and easy to repair it is looked upon favourably by both finance and insurance companies.  Because of this the value of the boat will hold provided it is maintained and also depending on your personal credit rating you should be able to lend upto 60% of its market value with a bank or asset finance provider (specialists in the passenger boat industry are Shawbrook, Lombard, Close Marine, Pro-marine and CGI Finance).  Raising the remaining balance usually comes from savings, remortgaging a home, personal loans and family and you can take assurance that from the day you acquire this business you will receive the transfer of advanced sales booked for 2017.

If you are interested in sailing into the future with Cardiff Cruises please get in touch using the form below or by email

The asking price is for offers in the region of £180,000.

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