• Maritimo hosting a TV crew.
    Maritimo hosting a TV crew.
  • The Leopard Catamaran team had a successful show.
    The Leopard Catamaran team had a successful show.
  • Show visitor Duncan was pleased to receive a prize of a portable outboard from Mercury Marine's Dean Harris.
    Show visitor Duncan was pleased to receive a prize of a portable outboard from Mercury Marine's Dean Harris.
  • Smuggler Marine's Logan Pringle is interviewed by TV3.
    Smuggler Marine's Logan Pringle is interviewed by TV3.

Attendance, sales up at Auckland on-water show

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Buoyant buying boosts 20th staging of NZ's biggest on-water event.

Organisers of the Auckland On Water Boat Show held last week in New Zealand reported an increase in visitor numbers and strong buying activity from attendees at the 20th staging of the event. The show saw a 12% increase in visitor numbers compared to last year's gate figures.

On the back of the increased visitors numbers, exhibitors reported a strong buying market and quality leads.

“It was a really positive show and we had serious buyers through,” said Terry Bailey of Arvor Boats, a sentiment which was echoed by other exhibitors.

Maritimo’s Tom Barry-Cotter said the Australian builder had seen a number of sales across the range, commenting it was “the best Auckland show for us in years”.

“We had a great response to the X-Series debut and a lot of interest in the performance of Maritimos - particularly their sea-going ability after bringing the boats across on their own bottoms. It’s been one of the top-performing shows this year so far,” he said.

Team Windcraft had a range of sailing yachts on display. New Zealand manager, Dominic Lowe, said the dealership sold its stock boat from the stand, received two more orders and had some strong enquiries to follow up on.

New Zealand company, 36 Degrees Brokers, partially credited the good results to changes it has observed in the New Zealand consumer.

“We introduced all new vessels, never before seen in New Zealand, which highlight a relaxed European style with plenty of space to lounge,” said Conrad Gair. “The response was incredibly-positive, and we also had very strong interest in a syndicated approach to boating - so many people are just starting to see it as an option and are coming to understand the many different boating avenues it opens up to them.

“We think the perception of how we spend time on the water is broadening and changing in New Zealand so for us, it was highly satisfying to demonstrate to show-goers just some of the many options we offer.”

With three Leopard Catamarans already ordered for New Zealanders and set to arrive over the next year, Leopard Catamaran’s David Flynn said he knew the innovative, roomy design of the cats would be appreciated by Kiwis.

“We’ve had great people coming through and it’s been a very pleasant experience, with a good pace to the show,” he said.

Chris Janes of Auckland-based boat syndication company Ownaship agreed.

“It’s been our most successful show yet,” he said. “We’ve had fantastic enquiries, a great quality of people coming through, and found that nothing was a real issue. It was well-organised and very relaxed.

“We think Kiwis are changing the way they boat and they’re drawn to having access to great boating experiences at a fraction of the cost. Having a boat fully-managed means they can have both bach [holiday home] and boat, while knowing the vessel’s ready for them to enjoy when they want it.”

“It’s been bloody marvellous,” said Jason Snashall of Orakei Marine. “Sold boats, lots of interest and a really good show.”

“It’s been a brilliant opportunity to re-engage with owners and future owners alike,” said Tristram Fink of Hamilton-based Tristram Marine. “We’ve had a lot of genuine enquiries and being in front of our customers further reinforces positive feedback on the brand and vessels we’re creating.”

AOWBS organiser Stacey Cook says the show team was thrilled with the results of this year’s show.

“Our remit is to showcase the marine industry and help businesses flourish, so hearing from exhibitors the market felt strong, and they’ve received good quality enquiries is exactly what we want.”

This was the last year the show will be held in the ANZ Viaduct Events Centre for the foreseeable future. The centre has no been turned over to Emirates Team New Zealand to create their headquarters for the upcoming America's Cup campaign.

From next year the show will shift slightly to spread around the Viaduct Harbour in the heart of Auckland’s marine precinct.

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