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New brand image, website coming to Fort Lauderdale Boat Show

The communications firm that dreamed up bikinis in ice cubes and a Beachmobile filled with models to promote Broward tourism has been hired to develop a new brand image for the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show.

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Organizers of the world’s largest in-water boat show said Monday they contracted Starmark International of Fort Lauderdale for a new brand, creative campaign and website for this year’s massive show.

Biggest and smallest boats at the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show

“The 56th year is going to be the most amazing ever, and we wanted to go out with a new look and feel to reflect our vision,” Efrem “Skip” Zimbalist III, president of boat show organizers Show Management of Fort Lauderdale, said in a news release.

Starmark’s experience in marketing Broward tourism worldwide gives them a “global perspective that the Boat Show wants to leverage,” said Brett Keating, Show Management’s chief for consumer marketing.

Besides Broward’s travel bureau, Starmark also works with Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport, Port Everglades and the Marine Industries Assocation of South Florida.

Part of its new boat show campaign will highlight greater Fort Lauderdale “as the global marine hub that it is,” Starmark CEO Peggy Nordeen said in an email.

The new website also will make it easy for visitors to customize their version of the boat show, she said, “by finding the brands, exhibitors and experiences that they want to have when they attend the show.”

This year’s boat show will be Nov. 5-9 and, for the second year in a row, will feature a luncheon to promote the Broward area for business beyond boat sales. That luncheon will include leaders from Broward’s economic development alliance, tourism bureau and marine industries association.

The Fort Lauderdale show attracts more than 100,000 visitors yearly, including top entrepreneurs and executives who come from New York, Europe, South America and other sites worldwide. The 2014 edition offered about 1,500 boats in seven venues, with more in water than any boat show in the world.

Starmark launched in 1978 and employs 55 people in offices in Fort Lauderdale, Orlando and Puerto Rico. It has won acclaim for campaigns that placed bathing suits in giant ice- ubes and a Beachmobile full of models in New York and other cities to promote sunny weather in greater Fort Lauderdale in winter.

dhemlock@sunsentinel.com, 305-810-5009, @dhemlock on Twitter

Copyright © 2015, Sun Sentinel


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Post-Sandy rebound boosts boat sales in New York

Posted on June 15th, 2015


New tax laws in New York should help prompt an industry rebound after Hurricane Sandy.

Stock portfolios and real estate values have been rising during the last few years and sales of recreational boats of all sizes increased by 7.3 percent in the state in 2014, bucking a national trend of sinking sales, according to a National Marine Manufacturers Association report.

A large part of the New York metro area rebound, aside from the general economic recovery, is that local boat sellers are getting a boost as storm-ravaged property owners get around to replacing some of the 65,000 boats the hurricane destroyed in 2012.

“When your home and car have been destroyed, replacement of boats is usually the last priority,” Gerrick Johnson of BMO Capital Markets told the New York Post.

As a result, area boat dealers say they’re expecting one of their best years ever.

Howard McMichael, who owns McMichael Yacht Brokers of Mamaroneck, N.Y., tells the paper he expects that his new-boat sales will go up about 20 percent this year with used craft doing even better, rising 25 percent. “There’s a very active market for boats that are in nice shape,” he says.

New York boat dealers expect a boost from the legislature’s controversial March move to cut the sales tax for luxury boat purchases by taxing only the first $230,000 of the sale.

Keith Cooper, who sells sailboats and sailboat timeshares that go for $8,000 to $15,000 at his Chelsea Piers SailTime franchise, said he is already two-thirds booked for the season and expects to fill up soon, a feat that he didn’t accomplish last year.

Cooper said he has yet to score a definite benefit from the recently enacted tax break, but he expects to be able to sell “another boat or two” before the year is out.

“It won’t necessarily turn a ‘no’ into a ‘yes,’ but it will turn a ‘Yes, I want a boat’ into a ‘Hell, yes, I want a boat,’  ” he says.

“This will help large boat sales in New York,” McMichaels agreed. “Before this, it made sense just to go to Florida and buy that $4 million powerboat.”


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Rain Impacts Houghton Lake Boat Sales

Rainy weather is creating some interesting situations for Northern Michigan businesses.

Spicers Boat City in Houghton Lake says while it brings extra foot traffic through the door, the rain makes it hard to move inventory.

They say the cool and rainy weather slowed some people getting their docks in.

That means many boats that had been sold or in storage couldn’t leave the warehouse.

They also say the cooler weather has forced many people to stay off the water and simply wait for warmer days before buying for outside activities.

“People didn’t want to get their boats out on the water at all dock’s weren’t put in,hoists weren’t’ put in, so it was just kind of stock piling everything, it was all stockpiling, you couldn’t get anything out because of the weather,” says Don Wigard, salesman.

As the Fourth of July nears Spicers expects to see their showroom get even busier..


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New York yacht sales finally set to rebound after Hurricane Sandy

New York’s local waterways may be clogged this boating season as local yacht sales cruise higher.

Stock portfolios and real estate values have been rising over the past few years, and sales of recreational boats of all sizes increased 7.3 percent in New York state in 2014, bucking a national trend of sinking sales, according to a National Marine Manufacturers Association report.

After years of floundering US sales as a result of the economic maelstrom that was 2007 to 2010, last year saw another sharp 60 percent decline nationwide for recreational boat sales, says Gerrick Johnson of BMO Capital Markets.

A large part of the NY metro-area rebound, aside from the general economic recovery, is that local boat sellers are getting a boost as storm-ravaged property owners get around to replacing some of the 65,000 or so boats destroyed by Hurricane Sandy in 2012.

“When your home and car have been destroyed, replacement of boats is usually the last priority,” Johnson explains.

As a result, area boat dealers say they’re currently expecting one of their best years ever. Howard McMichael, who owns McMichael Yacht Brokers of Mamaroneck, NY, says he expects his new boat sales to go up about 20 percent this year, with used (or “brokered”) craft doing even better, rising 25 percent.

“There’s a very active market for boats that are in nice shape,” he says.

New York boat dealers also say they expect wind in their sales due to the state legislature’s controversial March move to cut sales tax for luxury boat purchases by taxing only the first $230,000 of the sale.

Keith Cooper (pictured), who sells sailboats and sailboat timeshares (which go for $8,000 to $15,000) at his Chelsea Piers SailTime franchise, says he is already two-thirds booked for the season and expects to fill up soon, a feat that he didn’t accomplish last year.

Cooper says he has yet to score a definite benefit from the recently enacted tax break, but he expects to be able to sell “another boat or two” before the year is out.

“It won’t necessarily turn a ‘no’ into a ‘yes,’ but it will turn a ‘yes, I want a boat’ into a ‘hell, yes, I want a boat,’ ” he says.

“This will help large boat sales in New York,” agrees McMichaels. “Before this, it made sense just to go to Florida and buy that $4 million powerboat.”


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Boat tax rides stormy seas

VIKING YACHT

VIKING YACHT

Employees Jose Trujillo, of Pleasantville, left, Carlos Gonzalez and Luis Benavente, both of Atlantic City, work on the first ever 92-foot-long Viking Yacht, Thursday March 27, 2014, at the company’s factory in the New Gretna section of Bass River Township.(Staff Photo by Michael Ein/The Press of Atlantic City)



Posted: Friday, June 12, 2015 4:14 pm

Boat tax rides stormy seas

By: RICHARD DEGENER and BRIAN IANIERI, Staff Writers

The Press of Atlantic City


A controversial bill limiting New Jersey sales tax on expensive boats and yachts passed through a Senate panel on Thursday and now heads to a budget committee.

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New Jersey boat tax bill passes Senate committee

Boat Show

Boat Show

First day of the the Atlantic City Boat Show at the Convention Center in Atlantic City.



Posted: Friday, June 12, 2015 10:30 am

New Jersey boat tax bill passes Senate committee

By BRIAN IANIERI, Staff Writer

The Press of Atlantic City


A controversial bill that would limit New Jersey sales tax on expensive boats and yachts passed through a Senate committee on Thursday and now heads to a budget committee.

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Boat sales see broad gains in 1Q

Posted on June 12th, 2015
Written by Jack Atzinger


Click to enlarge.

Click to enlarge.

Gains that spread beyond aluminum fishing boats and pontoons and fiberglass outboards to bigger-boat segments gave the U.S. recreational boating industry a strong single-digit sales increase in the first quarter.

Sales in the main powerboat segments rose 7.2 percent to 25,956 and industrywide sales climbed 5.9 percent to 35,904 in 46 states that represent about 96 percent of the nation’s boat market, Statistical Surveys reported today. The only states not included in the data were Maine and Hawaii, which only report sales annually, and Oregon and Illinois.

Industry analysts have been predicting a 2015 boat sales gain in the range of 6 percent to 8 percent.

“We’re definitely on pace for that,” Statistical Surveys national marine sales manager Ryan Kloppe said.

All but one of the main segments — inboard and sterndrive boats — showed improvement as the industry achieved a much stronger early spring selling season than it did last year. In 2014 sales rose only about 1 percent for the quarter in the main segments and 2.5 percent industrywide.

“It was a much better spring around the country this year,” Kloppe said.

Florida, as usual, led the nation in overall sales, with 6,153, followed by Texas (3,635), Louisiana (1,930), Minnesota (1,545) and North Carolina (1,486).

Rounding out the top 10 were Georgia (1,421), Missouri (1,363), Michigan (1,300), Wisconsin (1,281) and Alabama (1,075).

Helped by the early start of the fishing season in many states, sales of aluminum fishing boats rose 9.9 percent to 8,788. Louisiana led the country in sales in that segment, followed by Texas, Florida, Minnesota and Wisconsin.

Sales of aluminum pontoon boats rose 8.7 percent to 5,066. Florida was the leader in that segment, followed by Minnesota, Michigan, Texas and Wisconsin.

Sales of 11- to 40-foot outboard fiberglass boats rose 7.2 percent to 8,922 boats, but three bigger-boat categories that have been inconsistent during the industry’s recovery from the Great Recession also showed improved results for the quarter.

Sales of 31- to 40-foot cruisers rose by 20 to 263; sales of 41- to 62-foot yachts climbed by 26 to 175; and sales of 63- to 99-foot semicustom and custom yachts increased by 16 to 63.

“We’re seeing some of the bigger boats rise,” Kloppe said. “Those aren’t big numbers, but it is nice to see these increases year over year and quarter over quarter.

Sales of ski boats, jetboats and personal watercraft achieved single-digit sales gains.

Ski-boat sales rose 9.2 percent to 974. Texas led the way in that segment, followed by California, Michigan, Minnesota and Florida.

Sales of jetboats climbed 9.7 percent to 634. Florida was the leader, followed by Texas, Michigan, Wisconsin and Minnesota.

Sales of PWC increased 7.4 percent to 4,658. Florida again was the leader, followed by Texas, Missouri, Michigan and Georgia.

Sailboat sales were flat for the quarter at 451.


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High Lake Levels Increase Demand For Boat Sales

By Wes Rapaport
wrapaport@kamc.tv

LUBBOCK, TX– Boat and watercraft sales are up as this year’s large rainfall created high lake levels. Lake Alan Henry is listed as full capacity, according to the Texas Water Development Board.

“This is the one of the highest recorded measurements of discharge,” said William Asquith, Research Hydrologist for the United States Geological Survey.

The high lake levels creates more sales for shops like Family PowerSports.

“Thanks to the rainfall, boat sales and watercraft sales have actually been up about 20 percent this year versus last year,” said Curtis Miller, sales manager for Family PowerSports. “I definitely think the rain’s helped out quite a bit…”

Asquith said the last time Lake Alan Henry had filled to capacity was 4th of July weekend in 2010.


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Dallas boat expo set for July

Posted on June 11th, 2015


The 2015 DFW Summer Boat Expo will be held during the weekends of July 10-12 and July 17-19 at the Dallas Market Hall at 2200 Stemmons Freeway in Dallas.

“At the 2015 DFW Summer Boat Expo, marine manufacturers will unveil their latest boats, engines and marine accessories,” DFW expo director Bron Beal said in a statement. “Boat dealers will be offering incentives on 2015 models to make room for 2016 models. At this year’s show, buyers can expect a surge of new boats and marine accessories, along with a focus on smaller boats that start at lower price points.”

The expo will feature more than 450 boat and watercraft models from more than 20 north Texas dealers. Women and children will be admitted free after 6 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays during both weekends of the show.

New boats ranging from small fishing boats to luxury yachts will be unveiled at boat shows across North America, including north Texas, as the summer launches. The National Marine Manufacturers Association says shows such as the DFW expo are among the top sales venues for the boat industry and often serve as a barometer for future sales habits and buying trends.

The U.S. recreational boating industry has estimated that there will be a 12 to 13 percent increase in sales of new powerboats from 2013-15. This is the industry’s third consecutive year of steady growth coming out of the Great Recession.

“We’re seeing boat dealers and manufacturers increase their space at boat shows around the U.S., signaling their anticipation of a strong boat-show buying season,” NMMA president Thom Dammrich said. “We expect all boat segments to see growth at boat shows — from personal watercraft to small family runabouts to fishing boats and large cruising boats — especially with the variety of exciting new boats being offered and as more people turn to boating in an improving economy.”


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200 new jobs coming with expansion to Nautique boat factory

Recreational boat maker Nautique said Tuesday it will add 200 jobs with an expansion to its Orlando headquarters and manufacturing facility.

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Nautique Boat Co. and owner Correct Craft announced plans for the expansion Tuesday, where it will add a 51,000-square foot building with more space for its manufacturing, engineering and product design segments.

It is expected to be completed in January.

“The marketplace has responded to the game-changing, innovative products that Nautique Boat Company has delivered the past few years,” said Nautique President Greg Meloon in a statement. “This facility expansion will provide our growing team with the resources necessary to continue the innovation of our products and cutting edge manufacturing processes.”

The company has not secured any tax incentives for the project, said spokesman Brad Gearhart. The new jobs will be added over the next few years, he said. Its factory now has 219,000 square feet where it makes water-ski and wakeboard boats.

Correct Craft now has about 390 employees in Central Florida, including its Aktion Park skiing and wakeboarding facility.

The company has been expanding with a new Aktion Park in South Florida and the acquisition of fishing boat makers Bass Cat and Yar-Craft. There are no plans in place to bring in personnel from the recent acquisitions, Gearhart said.

Florida is the nation’s largest powerboat market, according to the National Marine Manufacturers Association, with about $2.3 billion in boat sales in 2014.

Nautique’s headquarters is in southeast Orange County, east of Orlando International Airport. Information about jobs can be found at karnold@orlandosentinel.com”http://www.nautique.com/contact/careers.

karnold@orlandosentinel.com or 407-420-5664

Copyright © 2015, Orlando Sentinel


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