Published: Wednesday, 27 May 2015

The 2015 Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show (SCIBS) came to a close on Sunday (May 24) as hundreds of boats sounded their horns at 5pm to signal the end of the four-day marine extravaganza that exhibitors are citing as “the best boat show in five years”.

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This year saw visitors attend from local, drive, interstate and international markets and enjoy more than 500 boats on display, thousands of innovative marine products, world-first launches and non-stop entertainment for families, foodies and boaties alike.

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Exhibitors reported millions of dollars in sales over the four days with an increase in leads over last year’s show with highlights including Maritimo, Grand Banks, Palm Beach Motor Yachts, Stefan Boating World, Elandra Yachts, Leigh-Smith Yachts, Integrity Motor Yachts and Multihull Solutions – to name a few.

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Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show General Manager Johan Hasser says that while it is too early to provide actual sales figure results – and many dealers and brands experience good flow on in sales until Christmas – the first indicators and feedback from exhibitors across all sectors are extremely positive.

“There have already been some very big sales at this year’s Show and historically speaking the majority of sales come in the days and weeks following SCIBS,” he says. “The overwhelming feedback from exhibitors is that this year’s show was like the SCIBS of old, and many saying their best show since 2008.”

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Maritimo’s Greg Haines says they had sales, with extensive leads looking promising. “We are more than happy with the sales to date and we anticipate more sales to occur post-show with the extensive list of quality leads we have received,” Haynes says. 

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Legendary Sydney Hobart skipper and CEO of Grand Banks and Palm Beach Motor Yachts Mark Richards reports that the new Grand Banks 54 Heritage EU at the show sold for A$2.25 million to a Sydney buyer. 

Richards reports two From Palm Beach sales, the PB 55 and PB 65, as well as strong leads adding to the full order book. “It’s been a great show all round, well above expectations and lots of new people which is always good. We have very strong leads on Palm Beach and Grand Banks. SCIBS is always a top show for us,” Richards says. 

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Brett Flanigan from Integrity sold two new model 46 Raised Pilot House boats on the same day and is expecting “plenty more to come”. 

“This is fantastic. One of our best. We have been exhibiting at SCIBS since launching in 2009 and have just sold our 54th boat. We have noticed very positive sentiment. We will probably sell five boats, maybe more. We have just signed a new boat for Dick and Jill Johnson, which is exciting.”

Jed Elderkin from EMarine has one Back Cove 37 on the water. “This is our ninth straight SCIBS and we wouldn’t miss it. There’s been a lot of interest this year and the mood is really positive. Boaties know our brand and we have spoken to a number of people, with some good leads. SCIBS is really a marketing exercise for us rather than straight sales.” 

Sunseeker East Coast exhibited at its first SCIBS under the new dealership, led by John Drake and Mike Garrett. “There are lots of people here and a good quality crowd,” says Drake. “We are working on a few good leads. Our aim is to build the brand back in Queensland and promote our brokerage business as well.” 

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AeromilPacific from the Sunshine Coast had an enviable position on the marina aboard the award-winning Waterscape pontoon by Superior while displaying the Stationair Turbo 206 Cessna, “the perfect boating lifestyle accessory”, as well as the Cutwater 28 powerboat.

Rebecca Penny, marketing manager for AeromilPacific, says the boat show is the ideal fit with aviation. “This is our first time at SCIBS and we are loving it. People are very responsive. It’s amazing the number of pilots that we have seen here. It’s great to put the seaplane in this context. There’s a good synergy.”

The boat also attracted its share of attention. “People are drawn to its practicality and compact design. It’s ideal for the couples’ market,” she adds.

Stefan Boating World exhibited in the Marine Village and on water with the 32-ft Karnic 2965. “We have been inundated,” said Rose, one half of the dynamic duo. “It’s the ideal cruiser,” she continues. “With all the features of a much larger motoryacht, for just A$280,000. People have been blown away and yes, we are confident of a few sales. We even have a very famous Queenslander lined up to buy one.”

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Stefan Boating World was also representing Chaparral, the US sport boat brand at this year’s show. “It’s not just about sales for us,” says Steve Ackerie. “I look at the bigger picture.”

Scott O’Hare, Australian distributor for Chaparral, says it had “incredibly huge enquiry”, particularly for the 27 Cruiser. 

“We have sold three boats already and have a huge number of leads. We are hanging out for the sea trials, when we will convert a bunch more. We are surprising ourselves with the Chaparral boats and have high hopes for Stefan and Rose now handling the brand with their charisma and enthusiasm.”

A veteran of seven SCIBS, O’Hare says “it feels like we’re close to better times”. “Queensland has been weak for a few years, but it’s coming back.”

O’Hare became a dealer for Elandra Yachts in 2014 and was also representing the new marque at SCIBS with Founder and Director Luke Durman. 

“There are so many Victorians here,” says O’Hare. “They view SCIBS as the premium boat show and come up here looking for some sunshine and to see what’s new. There has been a very good response to the Elandra 53 and the plans for the new 47. People really appreciate the thought-process that has gone into these boats.”

Durman is thrilled with the Elandra’s SCIBS’ debut. “We have had a great show. There are several people who have reserved production slots, which is a vote of confidence,” he says. ”All the feedback has been extremely overwhelming with many punters declaring our finishes are the equivalent of a superyacht’s and our team are going to be very busy following up the extensive leads they have received throughout the Show.”

In the multihulls, Brent Vaughan from Multihull Central closed two deals already with many more on the horizon. “We have sold one of each – the Seawind 1250 and 1160, with lots of interest for the Aquila power cat, launching at SCIBS in 2016.” 

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In the Marine Village, the Corsair Pulse 600 was one of the stars of the show. “We sold 20 in the lead up to SCIBS and judging by the thousands of selfies people have been taking and sea trials we’ve booked, we will sell a lot more,” says Vaughan. “We have had phenomenal interest. I would be surprised if we didn’t sell three or four of the Pulse. 

“SCIBS is always a really good show for us,” he continues. “This year it’s like a new era of multihulls. They are becoming the mobile holiday home, the adventure vehicle for all demographics.” 

At Horizon Motor Yachts Australia, Erica Rae reported a contract on the PC52 and many exceptional leads on the E88 and E70, with sea trials booked. “The show has been really good this year,” she says. “We’re noticing a comeback in clients from the mining sector, which is great for us.”

Dean Leigh-Smith says the Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show had been ‘exceptional’ and the sales team sold its stunning Alaska 47, with other sales expected across a number of their 12 boats on water in the coming days.

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Also enjoying a great show was third-year major sponsor EuroMarque Maserati Brisbane with three Maserati Ghibli cars sold.

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