Detroit Boat Show reports increased attendance and consumer confidence

Michigan Boating Industries Association
March 5, 2013
Filed under News

February 26, 2012 — Livonia, MI – The Detroit Boat Show wrapped up its nine day run at Cobo Center yesterday with a 3% increase in attendance over last year. Thousands of consumers packed the halls of Cobo, pleasing exhibitors as they reported consumer confidence is gaining and boat buyers are back.

“We definitely saw a higher level of interest in purchasing, especially in the higher-end models than we have in years,” said Mike Apling of Devil’s Lake Watersports in Manitou Beach, Mich.

“Last year we had 10 – 15 quotes lined up at the end of the show – this year we have more than 50,” said David Goodwin, Soundwaves in Clinton Twp., Michigan.

“Sales appeared to be strong and prospects plentiful,” said Show Manager Nicki Polan.  “Everyone we spoke to at the show, from the boat dealers, marina operators, to the accessories and service companies, seemed upbeat about sales at the show and the momentum leading to the upcoming boating season.”

The show’s space sales were up significantly (35%) over 2012 as the show grew to two halls for the first time in four years, covering more than 275,000 square feet of exhibit space. “Attendees were pleased with the bigger show and stayed longer to see the nearly 500 boats on display, representing more than 60 manufacturers, including seven from Michigan and three from Italy.” said Polan. More than 50 cruisers measuring longer than 24 feet drew the biggest crowds.

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