News

Published: Tuesday, 24 May 2016

Gold Coast International Marine Expo 2016 in Australia recorded its largest visitation and best sales results, receiving wide acclaim as an economic boost for the Australian marine and Queensland tourism industries. 

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(Photos: The Gold Coast International Marine Expo - the Gold Coast Marine Precinct)

Over 20,000 boating enthusiasts streamed through the Expo welcome gates from Thursday-Sunday May 19-22. There was a showcase of over 600 luxurious motor yachts, catamarans and boats of all types and sizes both on land and on the water, as well as over 230 diverse displays featuring from marine engines and equipment to lightweight tenders, jet skis and boating accessories. 

Event & Marketing Manager Emma Brown forecasts the direct sales activity generated at the Expo will easily surpass last’s year’s figure of in excess of $50 million, based on exhibitor feedback at the close of the Expo. 

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“This year we had visitors from the United States, Singapore, Japan, China, Korea, the Dominican Republic, Spain, the United Kingdom, a large contingent of New Zealanders as well as people from every state in Australia.

“Our valued exhibitors are all very positive about the sales achieved and enquiry over the four fun-filled Expo days and qualified our Expo visitors as real boating people who just love the boating life,” Brown says, “However, the true impact will continue to be measured over the coming weeks, months and in some cases, even years. 

“Visitor feedback to Expo’s transport links – the free on-site parking, courtesy coaches and helicopters – has all been very positive, as it has been for our new precincts such as the alfresco dining hub, marquee schemes and indoor pavilion.

Gold Coast International Marine Expo Reports Great Sales And Visitation

“Expo’s team has already started work for the show May 25-28 2017 to further enhance the relevant, unique and rewarding boating experience for our visitors.”

Multiple sales across the luxury range at Expo were reported, with Clipper Motor Yachts having sale of four semi-displacement yachts and confident of confirming four more sales by the end of the week.

David Flynn from Leopard Catamarans completed the sale of the 43 Power Cat at its Australian Premiere, and confirmed a forward order for another 43. “Expo offers an excellent return on investment – there was really strong enquiry on the 43 and multiple expressions of interest about other yachts in the Leopard range, right up to 58ft,” Flynn says.

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“I started working in the marine industry as a 13-year-old and this is my best boat show experience ever. We have sold two new Cruise Cat 40s – built at The Boat Works – and one brokerage catamaran at Expo. We also have three more very promising enquiry and some really great feedback,” says Josh Dicker from Ensign Ship Broker and Pacific Blue Cruise Cat.

Newly announced 2016 Australian Marine Exporter of the Year, Riviera, signed forward orders for 11 brand-new luxury motor yachts. 

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(5400 Sport Yacht from Riviera)

“There were two orders for the new Riviera 5400 Sport Yacht from New Zealand within the first few hours of the first day of Expo and one for the new 68 Sports Motor Yacht that will have its World Premiere at Expo in 2017,” says Brown. “There was also a great deal of interest in the Nordhavn 52 and they reported being able to organise sea trials of an even larger model Nordhavn as a result of Expo.”

Over 1200 sea trials were undertaken throughout the four Expo days aboard from luxury motor yachts to family cruisers, fishing boats and water sports boats.

Mercury Marine’s Queensland Manager Mike Wilesmith says his team conducted 751 sea trials for people looking to put outboards to the test as part of the Mercury Edge experience being offered for the first time in Australia.

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Surf Coast Marine and Broadwater Boating Centre’s Paul Banning reported over $1 million in sales activity across the Cruise Craft and Quintrex ranges, up more than 25 per cent on last year’s Expo. “We also have solid enquiry generated by some 120 Quintrex Island sea trials and we will be busy this week as we follow up and help more families get out on the water enjoying themselves this coming season,” Banning says.

Sirocco Marine North sold multiple boats, with about 50 per cent of sales going interstate in their best boat show result. “About 50 per cent of our sales were to people from interstate,” says Sirocco’s Tom Carlisle. “We sold boats to Tasmania and Western Australia – in fact we sold boats to people who had never even owned a boat. It’s great to be able to introduce them to the water.”

Whitewater Marine’s Clint White said Expo visitors were asking the right questions and buying bigger boats this year, many of them over 6 metres. It sold boats every day of the show. 

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Newly established family company Mallards Australia sold their first water sports boat at Expo. “This really is a game-changer for us,” says Mallards Allan Van de Linde. “We were able to launch our brand for the first time in Australia and now people know who we are.”

The marine industry showed support for the Expo and that accommodation partners (Palazzo Versace, Surfers Paradise Marriott, QT Hotel and Silvershore Apartments), transport and event partners such as Marina Mirage in Main Beach and Blues on Broadbeach all helped reinforce the Gold Coast as a boating and tourism destination in Australia. 

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Brown says it is also very satisfying that smaller Expo exhibitors had developed new networks and expressed that Expo had given them great confidence for the future.

“Opening up the Gold Coast TAFE’s Marine Training Centre to the public and staging Expo’s Battle of the Boat Builders are terrific examples of that on-going support. That’s something really unique about our marine industry – we are all here helping each other, working together for the greater good of our industry, and our community, 52 weeks a year.”

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www.gcmarineexpo.com.au