Despite the rescheduling of its 2013 edition to 28 November to 1 December, the seventh Yacht & Boat Korea attracted a healthy contingent of international exhibitors and registered buyers.
According to organisers, GnA International there were 143 exhibitors in total, 94 of them from Korea and 49 from around the world, including Australia, New Zealand, Spain, Sri Lanka, the US and other markets.
Shifting from May to November due to government restructuring, the event coincided with Thanksgiving in the US, which may have deterred potential exhibitors and delegations from attending.
There were 273 meetings arranged between exhibitors which resulted in US$139m in potential contracts and US$35m in actual sales.
According to Barry Jenkins, consultant to Yacht & Boat Korea, the event focus is increasingly on B2B networking and creating opportunities for visiting exhibitors and local marine industry businesses.
'Organisers, GnA provided a list of Korean exhibitors and their products and facilitated networking with international delegations, which was very successful, as is reflected in the results. Even with short lead time, the event attracted substantial exhibitor interest. The boat show was publicised by the local network KNN which promoted the boating lifestyle to local market.'
Austral Propeller, Superior, Foundation Interiors, Arctic Steel and Vitus Maxwell were just a handful of the regional businesses who attended Yacht & Boat Korea with the aim of developing partnerships in Korea and among the visiting international companies.
'There is a tremendous amount of activity in Korea,' states Jenkins. 'The key to making inroads in Korea is having a consistent presence at shows like Yacht & Boat.'
In total, 22, 391 visitors attended over the four days.
As Jenkins explains: 'There was no on-water component this year, but the organisers built two large tanks for visitors to engage in on-water activities like paddling, as well as racing models. University students were invited to participate in the event, creating remote control projects and model boats that were raced and displayed at the show.'
The Changwon Exhibition and Convention Centre provided state of the art facilities and 7,827m² of exhibition space, located in Gyeongnam Province, South Korea.
Among the seminars and forums featuring internationally respected industry proponents was keynote speaker, Peter Methven OBE, President of ICOMIA, who spent some of his time at the show, developing rapport with university students undertaking marine-oriented studies.
Also in attendance, Marina Industries Association (MIA), the peak industry body for Australia and the Asia-Pacific, which presented two marina courses for the Korean marina industry.
Coastal Gyeongnam Province is home to a number of quality recreational boat builders and some of the largest commercial shipyards in the world.
Korea’s recreational marine leisure lifestyle continues to power ahead with reports of growing interest and more importantly, growing sales of marine craft. In the past 10 months, ownership and registrations statistics show 60 sailing yachts and 200 powerboats in the 6 to 15m range were purchased in Korea.
More at www.yachtkorea.or.kr