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North American MarineBusinessWorld.com Newsletter - It's all about events and industry awards

by Peter Rendle 9 Oct 2019 08:00 PDT
2019 IBEX Show - A resounding success © IBEX

We start with the report on IBEX which was a resounding success from all accounts. The 29th International BoatBuilders' Exhibition and Conference (IBEX) closed on Thursday, October 3rd with early indications that attendance figures were up from last year for the three-day event.

More than 700 exhibitors - 100+ new to the show - from 25 countries filled the 138 thousand square feet of exhibit space. The International Pavilions included exhibitors from Australia, France, Italy, Slovenia and South Korea, which accompanied the four Specialty Pavilions: The Compliance, Standards and Education Pavilion; Composites Pavilion; Marina & Yard Pavilion, and the NMEA Connected Boat Experience.

More than 175 marine industry marketers attended this year's Grow Boating Marketing Summit, an IBEX Special Event. A panel of leading marketing and research experts provided insights on the evolving digital marketing landscape and offered actionable strategies to help businesses boost their sales. Summit attendees included boat, engine and accessory manufacturers, as well as dealers, boat clubs and marine industry service providers.

Coinciding with Congress's return from summer recess, NMMA hosted its inaugural boating industry showcase event on Capitol Hill late last month, providing attendees with interactive boating experiences and insights into some of the latest innovations in marine products. The event, Captains, Cocktails, and Canapés, drew nearly 400 participants, including eight members of Congress, helping to bolster the association's profile in Washington, D.C.

Awards were in abundance and among the recipients was engine manufacturer, Evinrude. Evinrude announced recently that it has been awarded the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) Innovation Award in the Outboard Engine category at IBEX.

Another engine manufacturer was also recognised. Volvo Penta has been honored with multiple awards for its practices, products and people at IBEX in Tampa, Fla. Honors include an IBEX Innovation Award, placement on Sounding Trade Only's Most Innovative Companies list, and Mover & Shaker of the Year. At the IBEX Industry Breakfast on October 1, Volvo Penta was presented with an IBEX Innovation Award for its Next-Generation D4 and D6 Marine Propulsion Systems.

Dealers have not gone unnoticed. Bayliner Boats recently awarded Union Marine at their Annual Dealer Meeting in Knoxville, TN. Union Marine was awarded the 2019 President's Club Top 10 North American Dealer & 2019 Creative Marketer. Union Marine has been honored as Bayliner's market leader for the past ten years. Mark Helgen, VP of Sales stated, "We are really excited about the direction that the Bayliner team is going and we are also thrilled to be awarded for our creative marketing prowess and brand leadership".

And New Zealand-based company Vesper Marine announced that Cortex, its new integrated VHF, AIS and monitoring product, has been awarded the IBEX Innovation Award for safety equipment.

And finally, confidence in the marine industry has been reaffirmed with the Brunswick Boat Group officially opening its new, 45,000 square foot technology center in Edgewater, Florida. Joining the Brunswick team and many distinguished leaders in the community were Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and Congressman Michael Waltz. "We are changing the future of boating by bringing together the best engineering and design talent in a state-of-the-art facility to collaborate on advancing marine products and technology and integrating that technology to differentiate Brunswick boats," said Huw Bower, Brunswick Boat Group president. "The Brunswick Boat Group Technology Center is another substantial step in executing our vision to define, create and embody the future of recreational boating."

Peter Rendle - peter.rendle@marinebusinessworld.com

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