Matt Nichols back at helm of Nichols Brothers as CEO

Matt Nichols has something to smile about. The former owner of Nichols Brothers Boat Builders, Freeland, Wash., has been back at the helm of the company as CEO since Wednesday, Jan. 10.

Matt and brother, Archie Nichols acquired the family business in 1974 from their father Frank Nichols.

Matt Nichols last led the company as CEO in late 2007, when the company was in financial difficulties, laid off its entire workforce and filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

In 2008, Texas-based investment group, Ice Floe LLC purchased the shipyard and Mr. Nichols took on the role of Director of Business Development.

Now Ice Floe has put him back in the CEO position in a move that has been welcomed by Nichols Brothers staff.

"Matt is the only right man for the job," said Lacey Greene, Sales and Marketing Assistant at Nichols Brothers. "Our family-like company culture will return in no time, we'll be able to work together once again as a team and produce extraordinary vessels, like the high-speed catamarans, fishing vessels, tractor tugs and so many more we built in the years past."

"Congratulations Matt, and to the investors," said Casey Williamson, Fitting Supervisor at the shipyard ."I couldn't be happier to have Matt Nichols back in the driver's seat. His expertise in this industry will surely do well for our future. Compliments to the investors for their good judgment ."

"I think it will be a great move, now we can get busy and build boats the way we know how," said project manager C Mark Thompson.

Mr. Nichols replaces John Collins, who joined the company in October 2009 and who was the second CEO to lead Nichols Brothers Boat Builders after it was sold to Ice Floe.

January 13, 2011