Last week, more than 6,000 marine industry professionals gathered for the 26th International BoatBuilders' Exhibition & Conference in Tampa, Fla., before Hurricane Matthew hit the Southeast.
IBEX was a sold-out show and drew marine industry professionals from around the globe to see the newest in marine innovation from 556 exhibiting companies. The event covered more than 118,000 square feet of exhibit space, occupying two trade show floors and in-water exhibits.
"We are happy to hear reports from a lot of our exhibitors that despite Hurricane Matthew limiting hours on the final day and travel for many, IBEX was a success, delivering big business for the boating industry to thousands of marine professionals,” IBEX show director Anne Dunbar said in a statement.
“The show was buzzing throughout the first two days, and there was definitely a sense of excitement and enthusiasm surrounding the number of exhibitors and new products, the innovation and technology on display and the quality of the education throughout the show and on the docks.”
"In spite of the effects of Hurricane Matthew, IBEX produced strong results for exhibitors and attendees. The positive spirit on the floor of the show is a strong positive indicator that the industry is doing very well," National Marine Manufacturers Association president Thom Dammrich said.
"As boat sales continue to increase, and we see wage growth, growing disposable income and consumer spending, strengthening in the housing market, and interest rates low, the future is bright for the boating industry and IBEX."