SAFE Boats lease extension is a done deal

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Port of Bremerton commissioners approved lease extensions Tuesday night for SAFE Boats International, the port’s largest industrial tenant.

Though the rough terms of the deal had been hammered out months ago, commissioners were clearly elated to have the agreement formalized. SAFE Boats employs nearly 200 workers in the port’s Olympic View Industrial Park.

“We’re very proud to have a relationship with SAFE Boats, and to have you in our industrial park,” Commissioner Axel Strakeljahn said. “At the end of the day it’s about the people who live in our community and the people who work at safe boats.”

SAFE Boats CEO Dennis Morris (pictured above) thanked the port for crafting lease extensions that meets the company’s changing needs.

safeboats“I think we’ve reached an agreement that will work for all of us,” Morris said.

The extensions lock in SAFE Boats as a tenant through mid 2017. After that, the manufacturer has the option of signing one-year extensions for up to four successive years on any or all of the four properties it leases.

The agreement requires a generous nine-month notice if SAFE Boats decides to not renew a lease.

The variable terms of the lease extensions could help SAFE Boats scale up or down to meet fluctuating demand for its small military and law enforcement boats.

“It does give us that flexibility in this dynamic business environment we find ourselves in,” Morris said.

As I reported last week, the agreement also gives SAFE Boats a steep discount on rent, to the tune of about $200,000 a year, or 41 percent.

SAFE Boats has leased space at the Port of Bremerton since 2000. The company is manufacturing a line of larger patrol boats at a Port of Tacoma facility.

With its main leases in Bremerton expiring at the end of June, SAFE Boats executives had looked for a way of consolidating operations. A search for suitable industrial space in Kitsap didn’t yield a ready solution

The company had the option of relocating its entire operation to the Port of Tacoma, but finally opted to stay in Bremerton.

With SAFE Boats sticking around, the Port of Bremerton’s industrial buildings are are largely full. The port still has a large number of vacant industrial pads it needs to find tenants for.

Commissioners may discuss a plan for creating spec buildings to attract more tenants at their next meeting.

SAFE Boats lease extension documents are embedded below:

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