VIDEO: Center console builders see strong Lauderdale show

Builders of outboard-powered center console boats reported strong sales, citing record revenue and promising follow-up business.
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Builders of outboard-powered center console boats reported strong sales at the Nov. 5-9 Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show, citing record revenue and promising follow-up business.

“Scout had the best Lauderdale show on record,” said Alan Lang, national and international sales manager for Scout Boats in Summerville, S.C. “Between our convention center and in-water space at the Bahia Mar, we sold 15 boats at the show, 13 of the 15 being 27 feet and over. We’re already following up with 20 to 25 additional serious customers post-show and we increased our sales in dollars from the previous show by 100 percent.”

Regulator Marine of Edenton, N.C., sold six boats at the show, including two of the company's new 41-foot center console. (The Regulator 41, now the flagship of the Regulator center console fleet, made its public debut at the show.) Regulator also sold two 34-foot and two 28-foot center consoles.

"We've never had a Fort Lauderdale show like this," Regulator president Joan Maxwell told Trade Only last week. "We were surprised. I think the 41 has made us more of a household name nationally." The 41s were sold to customers from New York and from Ohio, she added.

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Boston Whaler also had a new center console on hand — the 330 Outrage, which joins the 350, 370 and 420 in this fleet of offshore open boats.

"I can't tell you specifically how many boats we sold, but I can say it was dozens,” Boston Whaler vice president of sales, marketing and customer service Jeff Vaughn said. “The larger-boat segment, from about 25 feet and up, continues to be strong at this show. The 420 Outrage continues to draw attention. And some of our older models, like the 370 Outrage, did well.”

Other companies with center consoles, such as Intrepid and Pursuit, also found success at the show. “We did fantastic,” said Intrepid president Ken Clinton, who reported that sales were up by nearly 20 percent from 2014, which also was a successful year.

The sales activity was apparent in other boat segments, as well. In the December issue of Trade Only we will report on sales from Viking, MarineMax, Sea Ray and others. And we’ll tell you about new boats from Hatteras, Tiara, Four Winns, Grady-White and Everglades, along with a handful of new European yachts.

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