Despite the tough conditions that still prevail throughout the international leisure marine industry, METS and the SuperYacht Pavilion (SYP) 2011 confounded expectations with a boost in visitor levels, an impressive display of newly developed products and a flurry of first time exhibitors.
“The 2011 show exceeded our expectations,” said Communications and PR Manager, Annelie Koomen. “Although we had the highest number of exhibitors to date and advance visitor registrations got off to an early start, we also heard that many companies were considering reducing costs by sending fewer members of staff or for a shorter period of time.” “Having realistically anticipated a small percentage drop in attendance, we were understandably delighted to see visitor levels actually rise. On top of that the atmosphere at the show was vibrant and optimistic.” she continued.
As METS/SYP is widely acknowledged as one of the industry’s top networking events with trade-only quality visitors, it came as no surprise, however, to hear exhibitors speak enthusiastically about making new contacts and exploring global opportunities.
“Being here has been one of the key factors in the success of our international development,” said Guillaume Delcourt, export manager for French company Karver. “For us it is the place to be to meet existing clients and look for new business opportunities. This year we had a bigger stand and it proved to be a wise investment.”
Fellow French exhibitor Franck de Rivoyre, CEO and founder of Rivoyre Ingenierie, described METS/SYP as “mandatory in increasing export business” and Philip Marsh, managing director of UK boating footwear specialist, Chatham, confidently expects to sign new distributors and retailers as a direct result of the show. “Interest was global, from the Caribbean to Croatia, Poland, the Ukraine and New Zealand,” he confirmed.
The SuperYacht Pavilion 2011 enjoyed a constant flow of visitors and well attended networking events. Cheryl M. Zimmerman, CEO of first-time US exhibitor, FarSounder, was particularly impressed with the quality of visitor and described the SYP as being “etched” into her trade show calendar for 2012. “The SYP allowed FarSounder to focus on this important market while also drawing in customers from other market sectors,” she noted.
Chris Hornidge, managing director of long time METS exhibitor Henshaw Inflatables of the UK moved into the SYP for the first time for 2011. “It was a worthwhile and positive move and we were extremely pleased with the level of enquiry and constant flow of visitors to our stand,” he reported. “We expect to confirm a good level of orders over the next few months from enquiries received directly from the show.”
METS/SYP 2011 featured over 270 new products, and 133 products from 21 different countries were entered for the prestigious DAME (Design Award METS). Of the 43 nominations, there were eight category winners, 11 special mentions and special certificates awarded for Most Innovative Product and Most ECO-Friendly Product. The overall winner of the DAME 2011 was SCM of Italy for its innovative revolving portlight.
DAME jury member, Andrea Frabetti of the Ferretti Group, was delighted to present the DAME to SCM, describing its product as ‘a truly deserved winner in a highly competitive field’ and DAME jury chairman, Bill Dixon, in the Jury Report reinforced the quality of this year’s entries. “It was one of the best we’ve seen in years,” he said.
For the fifth year running, proceeds of the DAME registration fees were donated to a designated charity. Theo Lingmont, Director International Exhibitions for Amsterdam RAI, presented a cheque for €19,950 to the Sailing Kids Foundation, which arranges six-day holiday trips for chronically ill children and their families.
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