Axopar acquires majority shareholding in its biggest OEM producer in Poland


June 11, 2024

Markos, located in Slupsk, Poland, specializes in building componentry for heavy industry as well as the energy, marine and leisure industries and is a manufacturer of fibreglass-reinforced composite products used in boats, motor vehicles, transport and wind power. The infrastructure at Markos is unique, and the company has over 30 years of experience in component design, construction and fabrication. The net sales of Markos were over EUR 71 million in 2023, and the company employs over 1,200 professionals. 

In line with Axopar’s growth strategy, the investment is a strategic move marking a significant expansion for Axopar’s business, strengthening its position in the adventure boat industry. Despite a market slowdown, Axopar is accelerating, achieving a 15% revenue growth in 2023 while also increasing its profitability. The acquisition of Markos shows Axopar’s commitment to the long-term development of the company and its operations. 

Markos production facility in Poland

“We promised that our 10th anniversary year would be full of surprises. The investment in Markos stands as one of the most significant announcements during this milestone year. A strategic expansion of this kind is more than just an investment; it is a testament to our commitment to constantly taking steps forward, innovating and growing,” says Jan-Erik Viitala, founding partner of Axopar.

With this investment, Axopar gains access to Markos’ composite manufacturing facilities, technologies, know-how and their highly skilled workforce in Poland, renowned for their expertise in original equipment manufacturer (OEM) production. This will enable Axopar to enhance its R&D and production capabilities, streamline its operations, increase efficiency and meet the growing demand for its innovative products.

There will not be any immediate changes to Markos’ current business and relations, as Markos continues to serve its customers, including other boat brands, as usual. Furthermore, this investment and the mutual development of Markos’ business will benefit all of Markos’ customers and strengthen Markos’ growth plans for the future.

Axopar’s ambition is to develop the company into one of the world’s leading composite manufacturers together with Markos, and to deliver and produce components also for other boat brands than Axopar. 

“Taking pride in one’s employer is an integral part of Markos’ company culture, and we seek to foster this culture and the company’s strong employer brand also going forward. We are very excited to announce this strategic investment that aligns perfectly with our commitment to delivering exceptional value and disruptive innovations for our worldwide customers to enjoy in the future,” says Ari-Pekka Saarikangas, CEO of Axopar.

Since the beginning of 2014, Axopar has also been in a long-term partnership with another OEM, MPPB J.W. Slepsk, and will continue to deepen its collaboration with Slepsk in the future, making Poland one of the hubs of manufacturing Axopar-branded boats in Europe.

The investment does not entail any organizational changes. Szymon Koseski will continue as CEO of Markos, and Cesary Koseski will join as advisor for Markos’ Supervisory Board. The only changes will be made in Markos’ Supervisory Board and Management Board. The Supervisory Board will consist of Ari-Pekka Saarikangas, Frans Zeiser and Sebastian Temporale. Szymon Koseski and Albert Zaleski will form the Management Board and support the current management.

“As family-owned companies, Markos and Axopar share the same values when it comes to building brands based on experience, solid reputation and dedication. Strengthening our relationship with Axopar enables us to enter new markets with our products. This investment is a matter of pride for our company and team, and a great distinction for the entire region in which we are located,” summarizes Szymon Koseski, CEO of Markos.

Another family-owned company, Gebr. Fassmer AG, has been a minority owner of Markos since 2001 and will continue as a shareholder together with Axopar. “We are thrilled to welcome Axopar as Markos’ new majority shareholder and eagerly anticipate combining our strengths to develop Markos’ operations,” says Holger Fassmer, managing director of Fassmer. 

“Markos is one of Europe’s leading sustainable composite manufacturing and boat building companies, and we recognize the increasing importance of investing in sustainability, and together we aim to spearhead this movement,” says Saarikangas.

Despite the announcement of the transaction, the specific financial details, including the sales price of shares, remain undisclosed. 

For more information, visit:




Related Posts

NMMA Canada’s Day on the Hill event hits a new high in 2024


While the Day on the Hill lobby session has been a key activity for NMMA Canada for many years now, I feel that the event hit a new high in the 2024 session in Ottawa on May 27 and 28th.

Lead by Executive Director Marie-France MacKinnon and executed by her team and their public affairs firm, BlueSky Strategy Group, the results were impressive. The NMMA Canada Board of Directors were organized into teams with business interests and special skills matched up to politicians and senior bureaucrats to most effectively present the marine industry’s agenda of issues. 

Read More

Need to Catch up on News This Week?

Every Tuesday we publish a fresh Digest with informative articles pertaining to the Canadian boating and marine industry. Stay up to date with the latest products, research and industry developments.

Missed an Issue of Boating Industry Canada News Week? If you’re looking for a specific issue, or simply want to catch up on previous issues, check out our Boating Industry Canada News Week Archives.

Not signed up for News Week? Subscribe here.

The Hydrobike, a key concept that embodies a vision for the future

DECATHLON, determined to erase the boundary between land and water, introduces its latest forward-thinking concept: the HydroBike. This innovation from the French sports giant aims to democratize access to nature while staying ahead in the transformation of their business model. 

The initial assessment: paddle sports are often inaccessible to less experienced individuals, assuming the acquisition of paddling skills.

Read More

Compass works when electronics don’t

Hubbell-Marine Stainless steel outlet covers

Even in the event of an onboard power failure, a Ritchie Navigation SuperSport Helmsman SS-1002 magnetic compass still works. Plus, when the vessel is moving slowly in fog or while trolling, it can do something a GPS can’t: show the actual heading in real time. As a back-up to modern electronics, it’s a vital navigational tool that belongs on every commercial and recreational boat.

Read More