NEWS - Brisbane Boat Show claims 20 per cent increase in admissions

NEWS - Brisbane Boat Show claims 20 per cent increase in admissions

Brisbane Boat Show

A steady stream of boating enthusiasts, fishing fans and families made their way to the Brisbane Boat Show held at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre over the weekend to make the 2009 Brisbane Boat Show an outstanding success, organisers said.

With strong sales reported by all 115 exhibitors, Marine Queensland event organiser Jason Plant said 25,400 people attended the Brisbane Boat Show — a 20 per cent increase in admissions to the 2008 event. Officials said this year’s event experienced the biggest Saturday crowds on record since 2002, up 30 per cent on last year’s attendance.

"The increase in numbers is a positive sign people are still looking to ‘live the dream’ and the early arrival of warmer weather appears to have started people thinking about getting outdoors again and on the water," Plant said.

Along with an array of exhibitors, the show organisers also boasted an impressive line-up of guest appearances with world wakeboarding champion Daniel Watkins wowing audiences on the largest indoor rail of its kind ever assembled in Australia and Andrew Symonds (the ambassador for the 2009 Brisbane Boat show) sharing fishing tales and boating stories of his own.

Plant said that given the volatile economy there was definitely some concern the current economic situation would affect both numbers and sales, however, the reports over the four days signal the industry is sailing into clearer waters.

“It’s definitely an encouraging sign of the community’s readiness for some escapism and love for all things recreational. Earlier this year we achieved the biggest crowds on record at our Tinnie and Tackle Show (32,000 visitors over three days), and now we have been able to replicate this success and increase visitor attendance at the Brisbane Boat Show as well,” said Plant.

He continued that it was also an honour to have the 49th annual Brisbane Boat Show selected as the launching pad for the 430 Sundancer and Bar Crusher 760HT. “This was the first time the two boats had been seen in Queensland and we were excited we were able to present such prestigious vessels to the Queensland public.”

The Brisbane Boat Show also exhibited new models from Ally Craft, Ensign, Lewis, Bayliner, Maxum, Kencraft, Whittley and Horizon, and catered for affordable family fun with entry free for children under 15.

The show’s ‘Kids Marine Zone’ once again proved to be a popular feature with more than 1000 children taking advantage of free activities such as lure painting, cast netting, rock climbing and yabbie catching over the weekend.

Show organisers said that many exhibitors have already reported positive sales and lead outcomes from the show.

James Cullen from Stones Corner Marine said: “It is obvious that consumer confidence has returned. It was one of the best Brisbane Boat Shows we have experienced for a number of years.”

Aaron Hunt from Bias Boating reported stronger sales in the first two days of this year’s Brisbane Boat Show than was experienced over the entire duration of the 2008 Brisbane Boat Show.

Brisbane-based boat manufacturer Cruise Craft also experienced a positive show result. Cruise Craft’s Nathan Nichols said: “There was a definite positive vibe throughout the show. It was great to see an increase in numbers through the door. Overall it was a fantastic show for us.”

Ray Barnes, state manager for Yamaha Motor Australia, was extremely pleased with their show results reporting an increase in sales across all of their dealer and corporate stands.

“We look forward to an even bigger show in 2010 to celebrate the Brisbane Boat Shows 50th Anniversary!” said Plant.