Freedom Boat Club, a Brunswick Corporation business, announced today that it has acquired the Freedom Boat Club of Rhode Island franchise operation and territory.

The acquisition includes all four current Rhode Island-based locations – Newport, Portsmouth, Warwick, and Barrington, as well as the rights to expand and build new club locations throughout Rhode Island, according to a press release from Freedom Boat Club.

Freedom Boat Club says that this action complements the recent Freedom Boat Club acquisitions in the Northeast, including the New York City / Long Island and Connecticut territories.

“The acquisition of the Rhode Island business and territory presents a tremendous opportunity to expand Freedom’s presence in the top boating communities in the world,” said Cecil Cohn, Freedom Boat Club Network’s president in the press release.  “The Rhode Island franchise owner has been an exceptional partner to Freedom and has done an outstanding job of establishing and growing the Freedom brand, as well as attracting a growing membership and delivering exceptional on-water experiences.”

The Freedom Boat Club brand entered the Rhode Island market under the leadership of former owner and marine industry veteran, Richard Cromwell. Over the past 12 years, Cromwell has built a strong community of boaters at its locations, grown memberships steadily year-over-year, and established a solid foundation for growth with best-in-class operations.

  • Freedom Boat Club Newport was opened in 2009 at the Newport Yachting Center.
  • Freedom Boat Club Portsmouth is located at the junction of Mount Hope Bay and the Sakonnet River in the Safe Harbor Sakonnet Marina.
  • Barrington is the newest Freedom Boat Club in Rhode Island, opening spring of 2019.  It is located at the Safe Harbor Cove Haven Marina.
  • Warwick Freedom Boat Club is located in the Safe Harbor Cowesett North Yard. It is adjacent to Chelo’s restaurant covering most of “A Dock”. It opened in 2007 and is the largest location in Rhode Island, according to Freedom Boat Club.

“Since joining the Freedom family in 2009, we have greatly valued their partnership and support, both of which have been instrumental in our success over the years,” said Richard Cromwell in the press release. “We are excited to see their plans for accelerated expansion come to fruition, since they offer our members additional boating locations across the Northeast. We are confident that our members will continue to receive exceptional boating experiences under Freedom’s leadership.”

As part of the transition, Cromwell will remain onboard to assist with the transition, and the local staff has been retained to ensure business continuity.

With this acquisition, Freedom Boat Club operates corporate-owned clubs in 11 territories spanning Rhode Island; Connecticut; Southwest Florida; Southeast Florida; Raleigh; Charleston; Chicago; New York City / Long Island; Milwaukee; the United Kingdom; and Spain. 

Ryan Belmore is the Owner and Publisher of What's Up Newp. He was born and raised in Rhode Island and graduated from Coventry High School. He serves as Vice President of Fort Adams Trust and serves on the Board of Directors for Potter League for Animals. Ryan also is currently the Senior Editor - North America for Mountain News, publisher of OnTheSnow. Ryan is a member of Local Independent Online News (LION) Publishers and North American Snowsports Journalists Association (NASJA).