Hans Mellström (* 1942 - † 2020-04-19)
When Elsebeth Gustafsson-Furthmair wanted to sell her shares in the company in 1995, Hans Mellström stepped in as buyer. Shortly afterwards, he also acquired the shares of Roy and Lennart Ivarsson in 1997 and thus became the sole owner of Storebro Bruks AB and AB Storebro Royal Cruiser.
The Viamare Group was created as a holding company for the acquired shipyard. In 1999, the additionally acquired shipyards of the Nimbus Group were added to this holding. Due to cancer, Hans Mellström was at times only with difficulty able to manage the business. These were then managed by the Nimbus founders Hans and Lars Wiklund, who used the time to strengthen the role of Nimbus in the group accordingly. In 2004, Hans Mellström then sold 51% of his shares in the Viamare Group.
In the resulting shipyard alliance, Storebro was to be responsible for ships over 13 m, Nimbus for those below. With this decision, the production of Storebro's successful models SRC 380 Biscay and SRC 355 Baltic was abruptly discontinued.
Under Mellström's leadership, a number of changes continued to be made to the product portfolio. Not all of them were very happy. Negative, though understandable, were some cost-cutting measures that took effect from 1997 onwards, some of which were later reversed. The victims of these measures were the first ships of the SRC 430 Biscay.
The development of the Storebro Grand Series No. 1 (62) was certainly outstanding. With this ship, he also broke with the previous designer Wilke and relied instead on the Argentinean German Frers. Tragic, however, was the decision not to build the entry-level model designed by Wilke, the SRC 310, in favour of the later J32. Although the J32 brought many technical innovations to the production process, its design broke strongly with the previous design line and frightened off those who had previously been interested in Storebro.