Montreal electric recreational vehicle maker Taiga delivered its first watercraft over the weekend.
Posted at 6:00 am
This first Orca electric watercraft was delivered on Saturday and Taiga intends to deliver around ten in total this week. “We delivered some on Saturday and will continue to deliver this week,” said Samuel Bruneau, co-founder and big boss of Taiga.
Although he admits that delivering a first watercraft on July 9th is not “ideal”, he maintains that it is not too late at this point in the season. “There are still some good long weekends in the summer for our customers in Quebec and Ontario,” he says.
He adds in the same breath that Taiga has many customers in the key markets of Florida, Texas and California. “These are markets where there is no winter,” he recalls.
Samuel Bruneau states that it is Quebec customers who will receive the first Taiga watercraft. “We want them to make the most of the summer and then when it gets colder we ship further south. »
The company hopes to ship “a few hundred” personal watercraft by the end of the summer. These personal watercraft are all manufactured at the LaSalle facility.
Taiga hopes to reach maximum capacity at its LaSalle plant (8,000 units per year) within the next 12 to 18 months.
Further details will be provided next month during the quarterly earnings presentation expected in mid-August.
Management is not providing sales guidance for this first year of production, particularly due to observed supply chain volatility.
The Flea Challenge
With the delivery of the first water motor ship, Taiga has at least partially solved its supply problems with chips. “Certainly there are always challenges, a bit like in the rest of the industry in general with electronic components. »
The problem is related to the availability of electronic chips, which are currently mainly manufactured in Asia, and the demand for these chips in the electronics and automotive sectors during the pandemic, explains Samuel Bruneau.
“It will sort itself out, but it will take time for the industry to adjust. It used to take between two and six months to buy a chip. Today it takes 12 to 18 months to get the same chip. You have to buy in good time and plan for the very long term. »
Samuel Bruneau still says he sees a very good surge in demand for Taiga vehicles in the current economic context. “There are no signs of slowing down on our side,” he said. Demand continues to be very strong. »
Combustion-powered snowmobiles and personal watercraft are gas-guzzling vehicles, and with gas prices rising, Samuel Bruneau points out that electric vehicles like Taiga’s are attractive.
Taiga’s CEO claims that the financial situation of the company he runs remains “very good” and that there is no immediate need to support the activities.
It’s something we continually analyze. Of course we are in an expansion phase. We are always open to various forms of financing to support growth.
Samuel Bruneau, co-founder of Taiga
For example, he wants to be able to increase credit lines to further increase inventories and prevent supply chain problems. “That’s one of the niches we’re looking at,” he said.
With construction of the Shawinigan plant slated to begin next summer, Samuel Bruneau is hoping that on the day the LaSalle plant reaches maximum capacity, production can begin in Mauricie. At full capacity, the LaSalle plant can produce nearly 8,000 units per year, while the Shawinigan plants alone should be able to produce 60,000 units per year.
Taiga had 2,886 pre-orders (watercraft and snowmobiles) at the beginning of April. The company generated its first income at the beginning of the year with its snowmobiles.
Taiga shares rose 8% to $4.00 on the Toronto Stock Exchange on Monday. The title was worth ten dollars on the same date last year.