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The NRMA may best be known for its roadside assistance, but its portfolio is expanding to the water with the takeover of Sydney’s Manly Fast Ferry.

‘For years, Manly Fast Ferry has been a beacon of fast transport in a region notorious for its limited transport options and roads that remain among the most congested in the city,’ said NRMA chairman Tim Trumper said in a statement on Thursday.

Last year the Manly Fast Ferry’s 10 vessels transported more than 3.2 million people between the city and the Northern Beaches, as well as on whale watching tours.

A trip from Manly to Circular Quay on the Fast Ferry takes approximately 18 minutes, according to NRMA, which along with vessels, is also moving into business ventures including an electric vehicle charging network and Travelodge Hotels.

‘This significant announcement sends a clear message that while our history was around the automobile our future represents this and much more,’ Mr Trumper said.

The founding owners of Manly Fast Ferry, Will and Richard Ford, will stay on in their roles as chief executive officer and chief operating officer.