Feedback has been positive all around on the heels of the 57th Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show, which wrapped on November 7th. “Many exhibitors reported that they left the show with strong leads and sea trials scheduled in the coming weeks,” said Efrem “Skip” Zimbalist III, president of Show Management, the company that manages and produces FLIBS for the Marine Industries Association of South Florida.
Attendance at the five-day show was up 5 percent compared to the 2015 event. Among all segments of boats on display, the largest increase was boats in-water under 100 feet in length, which grew 2.9 percent over last year. Also notable, in the superyacht sector, seven yachts larger than 200 feet were the biggest collection in this size category in the show’s history.
The general consensus from participants has been good. Mostly crediting brand innovation and product diversity as the driving factors to their success at the show. G Marine represented eight boats ranging in size from 43 to 110 feet from three European yacht brands, including Astilleros Astondoa from Spain, Fairline from Great Britain and Italian EVO Yachts. “When selling smaller boats, it is easier to close several deals at a show,” said CEO Alberto Galante.”When we have the right boat for the right customer, we can shake hands on a deal. The show offers us the opportunity to present our builders’ capabilities in design and execution with a wide range of materials and technology.”
Chuck Cashman, chief revenue officer of MarineMax, one of the show’s largest exhibitors was extremely pleased with the show, “Simply put, our sales results at the 2016 Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show were amazing,” said Chuck, “Quality and innovation continue to be extremely important in driving new boat sales. Additionally, our entry into charter facilitated several larger boat sales. All of our core brands experienced nothing short of excellent results. Overall, the dollars sold at the show were very close to an all-time record.”
All eyes are now set on Miami Beach for the upcoming Yachts Miami Beach show, the next scheduled international event produced by Show Management. The 29th Annual in-water-only display presentation which will cover more than 1.2 million square feet of space over a mile-long strip of Indian Creek Waterway will partner with design firm EDSA to create a new look and layout for the 2017 show. Designed to create an interactive and inviting sales environment for exhibitors and buyers, yachts are now arranged in dedicated new and brokerage sections, making it easier than ever before to find specific boats. Foot traffic has been redirected from the sidewalk along Collins Avenue to the show’s network of new floating docks, where guests will find food and beverage concessions in a welcoming environment where they can spend time and enjoy the show.
For the second year, Yachts Miami Beach will feature a display of superyachts at Island Gardens Deep Harbour on Watson Island located on I- 395/MacArthur Causeway. This invitation-only “show within a show,” known as Super Yacht Miami, will feature some of the boat show’s largest yachts. Interested guests can make appointments for yacht tours by contacting exhibitors with displays at the venue or Show Management. More than 20 superyachts will be on display at this location, which can accommodate yachts up to 500 feet.
The Yachts Miami Beach show is set for February 16 – 20, 2017.