The Southampton International Boat Show wrapped up last Sunday with attendance of more than 103,000 over 10 days, an increase of 5 percent over 2018.
Held in Europe’s largest purpose-built marina, the show included Try-a-Dive, Try-a-Boat and Get Afloat, which let guests experience scuba diving and getting out on the water. A new dining exhibit, the Quarterdeck, gave visitors a spot to watch the on-water action while enjoying a bite.
With more than 600 brands on display, the show included more than 240 boat and product debuts, which officials said was the most ever at the event.
Organizers worked to make the 2019 Southampton show the most environmentally friendly yet. They introduced water refill points and removed all plastic bottles at catering outlets. This year also marked the launch of the Exhibitor and Contractor Environmental Charter, which companies signed to commit to reducing their environmental impact at the show. RS Sailing and Spirit Yachts were crowned the most environmentally friendly exhibitors.
“The 2019 Southampton International Boat Show, powered by Borrow A Boat, was an absolutely spectacular show,” Lesley Robinson, CEO of British Marine, said in a statement. “We have seen fantastic numbers through the door and out on the water. It has been a very buoyant boat show.”
“The event has been a resounding success, with an exuberant atmosphere across the 10 days, and I am delighted to hear reports of strong sales from across a spectrum of exhibitors,” he added.
Kiran Haslam, chief marketing officer at Princess Yachts, said the company had five new-product launches. “In terms of sales, we are delighted to report a very successful show, and certainly the weather this year played a big part in increased visitor numbers,” he said.
Exhibiting for the first time in three years and with a new U.K. dealer, Iain Smallridge, managing director at Pearl yachts, was impressed. “We’ve recorded more quality leads here than at any other event over the last couple of years, whether that’s a result of the UK market or the new range of Pearl Yachts. We’re very pleased with the results, and as a British brand, we certainly want to be at Britain’s biggest and best show. I’m sure we will be here next year, as the U.K. is an important market for us.”