“Our exhibitors are extremely optimistic this year. With the low Australian dollar already proving t


As the first boat show on the Australasian calendar, the Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show (SCIBS) is considered a key indicator of the state of the marine industry and consumer sentiment.

With the 28th annual event taking place from 19 to 22 May 2016, SCIBS general manager Johan Hasser said many of the big names attending this year’s event would be forecasting the year ahead based on show sales.

“Our exhibitors tell us it’s a litmus test of things to come for the rest of the year, particularly exporters,” Mr Hasser said.

“Our exhibitors are extremely optimistic this year. With the low Australian dollar already proving to have a positive effect on exports, it’s expected that this will reflect favourably on sales results.”

MaryAnne Edwards, CEO at AIMEX-Superyacht Australia agreed the lower Aussie dollar had provided a shot in the arm for Australian exports.

“We have always marketed Australian products and services on quality and innovation, and now the dollar has come down, we are hearing that Australian-made is attracting more attention globally,” Ms Edwards said.

Michael Trickey, Queensland sales manager for Muir Winches, said the lower Australian dollar had made Muir more competitive for overseas purchasers.

“It has certainly helped us no end, making us around 30 per cent cheaper. Our international agents tell us we are now more competitively priced, which as a premium product makes us very attractive indeed.”

Speaking about SCIBS, he added: “The trade days, Thursday and Friday, are so important for us. That’s when serious buyers come through on a mission. They know what they want.”

Luke Durman, co-founder and director of Elandra Yachts, said he was optimistic ahead of SCIBS 2016. “We will have several international buyers coming to Sanctuary Cove to see the new 53 model.” The Elandra 53 is scheduled to make its US debut after SCIBS and he added: “The Aussie dollar has made our boats more competitive in the US market, where they’re seen as great value for what is essentially a superyacht-calibre craft.”

Maritimo sales and marketing manager Greg Haines said Maritimo exports close to 50 per cent of its production.

“The Aussie dollar at this level helps exports and is a barrier to imported boats. We have had a very healthy level of enquiry, both here and in overseas markets. In 2016, we are looking forward to the world release of our M61 and the first SCIBS appearance for the S48.

“We consider SCIBS one of the top international shows; it’s a great lifestyle show,” he said. There’s a lot to engage the whole family and we have noticed a lot of overseas brands choosing SCIBS to host world premieres of their products.”

In addition to several major power and sail yacht launches, SCIBS 2016 promises an array of new products catering to every segment of the marine and leisure industries. From stand-up paddleboards to superyachts, Mr Hasser says SCIBS in the place to find anything boat-related.

The International Business Lounge will once again welcome visiting delegations, while the Top Deck VIP Lounge, presented by Club InterContinental, offers the premium boat show experience.

Available from $149 per person, VIP passes provide access to the Top Deck VIP Lounge, a fully catered private retreat overlooking the marina, along with a range of special offers from luxury brands such as Maserati and Maritimo.

The VIP Lounge is the perfect space to negotiate a deal, entertain clients, mingle with friends old and new, or simply relax and soak up the atmosphere.

Tickets to SCIBS 2016, onsite parking options and VIP packages are now available online. Running 19 to 22 May, 2016, SCIBS attracts close to 40,000 visitors and 300 exhibitors across four days, plus free park ’n’ ride services and limited on-site parking, available pre-paid. Exhibitor spaces are now open.