Major U.S. boat shows have a new owner

Show Management was purchased by a London-based company with a strategic plan to expand its Global Exhibitions business in the United States.
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Show Management, the producer of five of Florida's largest boat shows, was purchased by a London-based company with a strategic plan to expand its Global Exhibitions business in the United States.

Informa, which currently delivers 200 industry events annually, including the Monaco Yacht Show, is listed on the London Stock Exchange and is a member of the FTSE 100.

Show Management was founded in 1976 and has produced the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show at the Bahia Mar Yachting Center since then. In 2006 the company was purchased by Active Interest Media, the publisher of more than 50 of the country's leading consumer enthusiast magazines, including Yoga Journal and Yachts International.

AIM's six groups — the Equine Network; the Home Group; the Healthy Living Group; the Marine Group, which includes Soundings Trade Only; the Outdoor Group; and the Creative Home Group — reach more than 40 million readers in 85 countries around the world.

"We can think of no better company than Informa to focus on the continued growth and success of the five Florida boat shows and other events currently produced by Show Management," Efrem "Skip" Zimbalist III, president of Show Management and chairman of AIM, said in a statement.

The acquisition of Show Management aligns with Informa's strategic plan to expand its Global Exhibitions business in the United States. A global business intelligence, academic publishing, knowledge and events company, Informa completed the 1.2 billion-pound acquisition of Penton Information Services, a leading U.S. exhibition services company, in November.

“With this acquisition Informa Exhibitions becomes the world’s leading yacht show organizer,” Charlie McCurdy, CEO of Informa’s Global Exhibitions division, said in a statement.

“Combining the world’s premier show, based in Europe, with these five shows in North America creates a scale player in this attractive and growing vertical, further strengthening our relationship with leading yacht brokers and builders, providing good opportunities for cross-promotion and extending customer relationships across platforms and geographies.

“With the addition of these Florida shows, and following the addition of Penton’s exhibitions portfolio in 2016, Informa Exhibitions is now Informa PLC’s largest division by revenue and profit. Acquisitions in key and growing verticals will continue to be part of our growth strategy going forward as we look for events that complement what we are doing within vertical markets we have identified as attractive.”

"Informa's acquisition of Show Management allows for an exciting international opportunity that extends to exhibitors and the marine industry in leading global markets," said Phil Purcell, president and CEO of the Marine Industries Association of South Florida, partner with Show Management in the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show, the world's largest annual, in-water marine exhibition.

"The MIASF looks forward to continued collaboration with our partners based on a relationship that has been built over decades."

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