MICHAEL RYBOVICH RETURNS TO RYBOVICH... After a 21 year absence, Michael Rybovich returns to run the boatbuilding company his grandfather founded.
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. – October 31, 2005– Michael Rybovich, the third generation boatbuilder and 30 year veteran of the boatbuilding industry, today announced that he has decided to combine his current boatbuilding business, Ryco Marine Custom Boat Works, with the West Palm Beach company that his grandfather started back in 1919. Operating in Palm Beach County since 1984, Michael Rybovich and his Ryco company have been innovative and influential leaders in the world’s sportfishing and boatbuilding industries.
“The opportunity to combine Ryco with Rybovich, the company that my grandfather founded and where my father and two uncles operated and innovated for so many years, was not something that I could pass up”, says Michael Rybovich, noting the vast contributions that his family has made to sportfishing. “Although it has been extremely rewarding to build boats under my own Ryco brand, the opportunity of bringing not only myself but my entire staff back to building boats under the Rybovich name was simply a challenge whose time had come.”
Rybovich is today a highly respected yacht service, marina and boatbuilding company in West Palm Beach. It was started in 1919 by the Rybovich family but sold to Robert Fisher in 1975 after the untimely death of Tommy Rybovich in 1972 created a family loss that proved to be too much to overcome. Rybovich then had a variety of subsequent owners until it was eventually acquired in January of 2004 by H. Wayne Huizenga, Jr. Rybovich has not had a Rybovich family member at the company since 1984. Michael Rybovich will become President of the boatbuilding division of the company and will have a significant equity ownership in that division.
“Michael and I are friends and we have been talking about his potential return to the company in some capacity since the day I acquired it”, says Huizenga Jr. “Michael is a widely recognized and visionary boatbuilder in his own right and it was my hope that one day he would return to apply his incredible talents under his family’s name. Today we have put the Rybovich back in Rybovich.”
The Rybovich family ran a commercial fishing and small boatbuilding operation in West Palm Beach beginning in 1919. During the 1940’s they were key players in the new but quickly spreading sport of big game fishing. They soon identified the poor performance of the variety of converted boats being used for the sport. In 1947 when auto dealer Charles Johnson came to the yard with an idea for a lightweight, fast, maneuverable boat built strictly for sportfishing, the Rybovich family saw the opportunity. Through innovation and outright invention, the Rybovich family constructed a boat that catapulted the sport and gave birth to a new boatbuilding industry. After building the first special purpose boat for Charles Johnson, the Rybovich family continued their innovation of new boats and features. The Rybovich family is generally credited with developing the tuna tower, the transom door, the modern fighting chair and aluminum outriggers with spreaders. These features are the common elements of all sportfish boats currently built over half a century later.
For more information, contact:
4200 N. Flagler Drive
West Palm Beach, FL 33407 www.rybovich.com