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Boat dealers make news when, for example, they add new lines of boats, relocate, get new owners or acquire other dealerships.

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For selling, it sure beats a 10-by-10 booth

About seven years ago, Jock West, a marine marketing consultant based in Portsmouth, R.I., hatched an idea to put a new twist on traditional boat show booths. He reasoned that if buyers could see products installed and working on a boat, the real-life presentation would serve as a much better showcase than a static display…more

NMRA chooses new officers, board members

The National Marine Representatives Association announced its 2008-2009 officers and board members during the association’s annual meeting at the recent Marine Aftermarket Accessories Trade Show in mid-July in Las Vegas. The new president of the organization is Tim Luehmann of SM Osgood Co. in Eden Prairie, Minn. Norm MacLeod of ComMar Sales, Tiverton, R.I., steps…more

Analysts: KeyBank’s move could create imbalance

KeyBank’s departure from the marine and RV lending business is raising concerns from analysts about the supply/demand imbalance in the industry. “Shrinking credit availability has the potential to further destabilize these industries,” said Edward Aaron in a report for RBC Capital Markets issued Thursday after the KeyBank announcement. Key’s exposure is more concentrated in the…more

FCC marine head to speak at NMEA convention

Ghassen Khalek, chairman of the Federal Communications Commission’s Marine Division, will speak at the National Marine Electronics Association convention, scheduled for Oct. 1-4 at the Town and Country Resort Hotel in San Diego. Khalek’s presentation will begin at 3:45 p.m. Oct. 3. “The session will cover the AIS and DSC rules from both the U.S.…more

Already-lean companies still streamlining

Brunswick says its cuts are working; West Marine, MarineMax both plan more store closings Results for the most recent quarter were disappointing for marine-related companies, though all have outlined plans to streamline operations and cope with sluggish economic conditions. Brunswick Corp., West Marine and MarineMax each reported a drop in sales and revenue for the…more

SMT introduces third-party escrow for boats

Company taps into established real estate practice, claims it will safeguard buyers, sellers Secured Marine Transactions, a leading supplier of financial services for the international boating marketplace based in Branford, Conn., said it is now offering a bonded third-party escrow service for boat and yacht sales transactions. With secure funds, SMT assumes all fiduciary responsibility…more

Some of the winners of CSI awards

• Monterey Boats, based in Williston, Fla., is honoring its top 10 CSI dealers for excellence in customer satisfaction. “We are honored and proud of our dealer/partners for this achievement, and it recognizes their daily efforts to define excellence in sales and service,” said Monterey co-chairman Charles Marshall in a statement. The Top 10 Monterey…more

Industry using CSI to build buyer loyalty

Most say emphasis on satisfaction is more critical today than ever Recreational marine manufacturers, distributors and dealers remain committed to improving customer service, while marketing and advertising budgets are being cut to the bone and staffing is being reduced to near subsistence levels. The reason, say the experts, is simple. Satisfied customers remain loyal. And…more

Gander Mountain returns to direct marketing

Gander Mountain announced today it has begun a limited national distribution of its 244-page catalog to customers, marking the company’s return to direct marketing after 12 years. The fall 2008 catalog will be the first edition from Gander Mountain since 1996, when it sold its catalog operation. The return to direct marketing allows Gander to…more

Coast Guard celebrates 218 years

The U.S. Coast Guard celebrates 218 years of service this month as America’s maritime guardians. The Coast Guard is one of America’s five armed forces and traces its founding to Aug. 4, 1790, when the first Congress authorized the construction of 10 vessels to enforce tariff and trade laws, prevent smuggling, and protect the collection…more

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