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Success Story: Strategies for Ambitious Growth

Success Story: Strategies for Ambitious Growth

Established in 1977, Schooner Creek Boat Works grew from a group of dedicated craftspeople building wooden sailboats to become recognized as one of the finest re-fit and repair boatyards in the nation. The company builds large commercial and recreational boats and is consistently very busy with its re-fit and repair boatyard. Schooner Creek's facility is located on the main channel of the Columbia River, Hayden Island, in Portland, Oregon, and includes multiple service bays, an indoor paint booth, and an outdoor service yard capable of housing dozens of vessels. With 45 employees, the company also offers repairs on lifeboats of ships in the commercial dry dock in Portland.

In 2015, Shauna and Kevin Flanigan purchased Schooner Creek Boat Works with the goal of growing by 75 percent. The company has added 17 jobs in the last couple of years, and improved its business model to develop growth strategies and gain market share.

OMEP has exceeded my expectation in their ability to help my business meet the goals we have placed before ourselves.  —Kevin Flanigan, Owner

Schooner Creek Boat Works engaged the Oregon Manufacturing Extension Partnership (OMEP), part of the MEP National Network, to clarify its business model and determine growth strategies. OMEP encouraged Schooner to focus more on a particular market segment to increase the company’s competitive advantages. After working with OMEP to develop key initiatives for the market segment, Schooner invested in new plant equipment and managed to exceed its growth goals by a significant margin. The Schooner team worked to refine their mission, vision, and values to provide alignment within the company and further define their differentiators externally.


  • Achieved sales growth of 89%
  • Gained $360,000 in cost savings
  • Added 17 jobs
  • Invested $615,000 in plant equipment

Could your company benefit from assistance with growth strategies? Contact your local MEP Center for more information.


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The Oregon Manufacturing Extension Partnership (OMEP) is the official representative of the  MEP National Network™ in Oregon. The MEP National Network™ is a unique public-private partnership that delivers comprehensive, proven solutions to U.S. manufacturers, fueling growth and advancing U.S. manufacturing.

About the author

Oregon Manufacturing Extension Partnership

OMEP is a team of individuals located across Oregon who share a common mission of bringing results to Oregon's manufacturers. Our staff have distinguished themselves in all aspects of manufacturing from the shop floor to the board room, spanning the full spectrum of industry sectors. As business leaders and colleagues, we care deeply about supporting the passionate and hard-working manufacturing community of Oregon.

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