People on the move: Latest appointments in the marine industry

Nicola Antonelli_Sacs Tecnorib CMO

Businesses in the marine industry have announced a string of notable appointments and promotions in the past month. In this latest marine industry jobs round-up, we highlight some of those who have taken on new roles in December 2023 and January 2024.

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Sacs Tecnorib Spa

Sacs Tecnorib Spa, the authorised licensee of the Pirelli and PZero brand inflatable boats, has appointed Nicola Antonelli (pictured above) as its chief marketing officer.

Antonelli will report directly to Matteo Magni and Giovanni De Bonis, president and CEO of Sacs Tecnorib Spa respectively.

The firm says Antonelli’s appointment is part of the consolidation and development plan of the company, created from the merger between the brands Sacs and Tecnorib in 2021. In addition to his role as CMO, Antonelli will be entrusted with leading a cross-functional team focused on creating new product ranges and implementing new sales and marketing strategies.


Scott Breaux, Global Sales and Marketing Director at GOST © GOST
Scott Breaux, global sales and marketing director at Gost.

Marine security specialist Gost (Global Ocean Security Technologies) has appointed Scott Breaux as its global sales and marketing director.

In his new role, Breaux will oversee Gost’s initiatives and strategies for recreational and commercial maritime markets. His responsibilities will include identifying potential markets for expansion, ensuring supply chain viability and establishing new global partnerships.

Breaux has been with Gost since 2020, when he became a member of the support team. Prior to his time with Gost, he served in the U.S. Navy and spent 30 years of his career in the offshore energy and maritime industries.

Camper & Nicholsons

Camper & Nicholsons announces the appointment of Della Pearce as a Yacht Sales Advisor in Singapore
Della Pearce, yacht sales advisor with Camper & Nicholsons in Singapore.

Superyacht brokerage and service firm Camper & Nicholsons has appointed Della Pearce as a yacht sales advisor in Singapore.

From 2011, Singapore native Pearce served as a broker and sales director for local, prominent yacht dealerships, including several within the Ferretti Group. Responsible for brokering large yachts as well as working with major superyacht builders on new build projects, she has experience in all aspects of the sales process.

“It is a great pleasure to welcome Della to our team,” says Julien Solari, chief commercial officer Asia, Camper & Nicholsons International. “With over 10 years’ experience selling yachts in the Asia-Pacific region, she has built a very good reputation with clients and among industry peers. Della is a fantastic addition to the team, and I’m delighted to start working with her.”

Highfield Boats USA

Highfield Boats, builder and supplier of aluminum-hull rigid inflatable boats (RIBS), has made two new additions to its growing North American sales and marketing team: Emma Rigby and Jean-Côme Mazière.

Regional sales manager Rigby brings over seven years of experience from her tenure with a renowned global leader in motoryachts and sailboats to Highfield Boats USA. She will primarily be focused on supporting the Highfield Boats USA dealer network along the East Coast.

Jean-Côme Mazière, regional sales manager for Highfield Boats USA, comes to the company with several years of experience in the US boating industry, concentrating on OEM support and brand development.

Mazière will oversee a select group of dealers within the Highfield community and actively participate in developing new initiatives in the RIB segment, including the recently launched Nuova Jolly North America, for which he also serves as vice president of sales and marketing.

Babcock International Group

Paul Armstrong, CEO of Babcock’s marine sector.

Babcock International Group (Babcock), the British defence company, has appointed Paul Armstrong to lead its marine sector, delivering a number of critical UK and international defence programmes, including the UK’s Type 31 frigates for the Royal Navy.

Babcock operates in the UK, Australasia, Canada, France and South Africa, with exports to additional markets.

With a career that started in shipbuilding in Barrow-in-Furness, Armstrong brings wide-ranging industry experience to one of Babcock’s core business sectors. He joins Babcock from Draken International, the aviation defence business where he was CEO responsible for operations in the UK, US and overseas territories.

Marina Industries Association (MIA)

Luke Habermann, Membership & Programs Manager at Marina Industries Association © Marina Industries Association
Luke Habermann, membership and programmes manager at Marina Industries Association.

The Marina Industries Association (MIA) has appointed Luke Habermann to the role of membership and programmes manager. Working across all areas of the business, the role supports the MIA’s expanding membership and member programmes across Australia and the Asia Pacific region.

A passionate sailor, Luke’s marina career journey spans over 20 years and includes extensive operational marina management experience both in Australia and overseas.

“Luke’s operational experience will not only give him a deep insight into our members’ support needs, but he will be a great contributor to the development of our training programmes,” says MIA CEO, Suzanne Davies.

Ocean Marketing

Tim Manton Joins Ocean Marketing
Tim Manton, Ocean Marketing regional sales manager in North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia.

Tim Manton has joined Connecticut-based Ocean Marketing as regional sales manager for the US states of North Carolina, South Carolina and Virginia.

A former regional sales manager for Zodiac Nautic, Manton is an avid boater with a 100-ton captain’s license.

“A resident of Wilmington, North Carolina, Tim brings many years of industry experience to the Ocean team and is well known in the region,” says Ocean Marketing president and CEO John Thommen.

Taylor Smith Shipyard

Willy van Niekerk has been appointed as the new General Manager for Taylor Smith Shipyard in Port Louis, Mauritius.
Willy van Niekerk, general manager for Taylor Smith Shipyard.

Willy van Niekerk has been promoted to general manager for Taylor Smith Shipyard in Port Louis, Mauritius.

Van Niekerk is the successor to Thierry Bétuel, who managed the yard for 29 years. Bétuel is not leaving the company, as he has been appointed CEO Marine Cluster of the Taylor Smith Group, which comprises other marine divisions within the group and marine suppliers in addition to the repair yard.

Taylor Smith Shipyard is the oldest ship repair yard on Mauritius. Van Niekerk knows the yard well and has been assistant general manager since 2022. He has broad experience in the maritime and offshore industries, taking to sea at 14 as a school holiday job on a converted fishing vessel and deciding to study marine engineering as a result.


VideoRay Appoints Jeff Snyder as Director of Applications Engineering, Integration and Testing
Jeff Snyder, VideoRay’s director of applications engineering, integration and testing.

VideoRay LLC, US-based underwater robotics solutions specialist and developer of ROVs (remotely operated vehicles), has appointed of Jeff Snyder as the new director of applications engineering, integration and testing.

A seasoned marine technology professional, Snyder brings to VideoRay over two decades of expertise garnered from leadership and field positions at robotics and technology organisations such as SeaVision Underwater Solutions, L3 Harris-Oceanserver, and Terradepth.

Snyder will develop and execute test plans in production and field settings and ensure the validation and improvement of current systems. His focus will extend to integrating new sensor payloads, software platforms and capability upgrades designed to push the boundaries of existing and emerging robotic solutions.

Greensea IQ

Greensea IQ - Business Development Manager Jeff Vos
Greensea IQ’s business development manager Jeff Vos.

Greensea IQ, a US provider of intelligent ocean solutions and the creator of the Opensea operating system, has appointed Jeff Vos as the business development manager for Integrated Systems.

Vos has worked in ocean robotics for the past five years, most recently at Oceantobics, Inc. In his role as business development manager for Integrated Systems, Vos will be based out of Greensea IQ’s San Diego office, where he will focus on driving sales and building strategic partnerships.

His primary responsibility will be to promote and enhance the market presence of Greensea IQ’s Bayonet autonomous underwater ground vehicles (AUGV) technology, a solution for marine applications in the surf zone.

Vos will also work on identifying key partners, building long-term relationships, and developing new market segments.

Mustang Survival and the Wing Group

New leadership at Mustang Survival and The Wing Group
New leadership at Mustang Survival and The Wing Group: Kenny Ballard (left) and Lance Richardson.

The lifesaving equipment design and manufacturing company Mustang Survival has appointed Kenny Ballard as its new president.

Ballard takes over responsibilities from Juanita Killen, who stepped into the role of interim president in 2023, leading the company through a challenging year following the resignation of former president Jason Leggatt. Ballard brings experience from previous executive roles with renowned brands, including Osprey, SwissGear, Wenger Outdoor and Kelty.

Additionally, Lance Richardson, an expert in domestic manufacturing and efficiency, takes on the newly created role of VP, manufacturing and innovation for the Wing Group, Mustang Survival’s parent company.

Canal and River Trust

Henriette Breukelaar
Canal & River Trust welcomes Henriette Breukelaar as the new West Midlands regional director from 1 April 2024.

The UK’s largest canal charity, the Canal and River Trust, whose ongoing mission includes protecting and preserving 520 miles of waterways in the West Midlands, has announced the appointment of Henriette Breukelaar as the new regional director from 1 April 2024.

Breukelaar has had a diverse career, most recently as CEO at Greater Birmingham and Solihull LEP. Prior to that, she spent four years as an executive director at ExtraCare Charitable Trust, four years as director at High Value Manufacturing Catapult, and ten years as partnerships director with the regional development agency.

Although she doesn’t formally join the trust until April, Breukelaar will be taking the opportunity over the coming weeks to start spending time with the trust’s team of staff, volunteers, and partner organisations.

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