BRITISH Marine, which organises and owns the London Boat Show, has announced that the 2019 Show, due to run at ExCeL London from January 9-13, 2019, will not take place.
This decision was made after independent research by exhibition experts, Zing Insights, showed there was insufficient support from a large proportion of the marine industry to the show with its current format, duration and location.
“The decision to put the London Boat Show on hold is naturally very disappointing for the British marine industry,” said David Pougher, president of British Marine, “but British Marine and its Board of Directors has a responsibility to its members and we cannot commit to running a show which is clearly forecasted in its current format to be commercially unviable and will not meet customer satisfaction levels.”
Personal interviews with over 67% of exhibitors have revealed that whilst a number of marine companies supported the change to a five-day show, a large number of key exhibitors were not prepared to commit to next year’s show at ExCeL.
Visitor research also showed that consumer satisfaction of the 2018 Show was below acceptable industry standards.
Zing’s research findings were endorsed by British Marine’s exhibition sales staff who, despite intensive sales efforts, reported that an insufficient number of signed contracts of commitment to the 2019 Show had been returned.
Sales activity and support for the London Boat Show is in contrast with British Marine’s TheYachtMarket.com Southampton Boat Show, which attracts close to 500 exhibitors and more than 106,000 visitors. The 2018 event, running over 10 days from September 14-23, is significantly ahead in terms of ticket sales and exhibitor sign ups compared to this time last year.
British Marine says making the decision to put the London Boat Show on hold now for 2019 enables the organisation to look at alternative options.
“We are very aware that many companies in the marine industry look at a sales activity such as the London Boat Show in January as an excellent way to kick start the year, but times change and we must do the same in order to offer events which are affordable, accessible, welcomed and supported by the industry and its customers, and are financially viable for all involved. This is now the task for the British Marine team, its Board, its members and valued advisors to seek new opportunities to support our industry,” concluded David Pougher.