26,800 visitors at the water sports trade fair by the industry for the industry – Good atmosphere and interested audience
Successful maiden voyage of the Hamburg Boat Show
Hamburg—The first Hamburg Boat Show has safely returned to harbor. The premiere of the water sports trade fair at the Hamburg exhibition grounds attracted 289 exhibitors and 26,800 visitors curious about the latest products and trends. As Torsten Conradi, president of the German Boat- and Shipbuilding Association (DBSV) and organizer of the fair, summed it up: "We're looking back at five great days that showed not only the importance to the industry of a fair here in Hamburg, but also that with nearly 27,000 visitors, the new concept of the water sports fair has worked out." In addition to numerous boats, the main attractions included a standing wave and the three lecture forums that delivered all manner of information about boats and sea travel.
The premiere of the Hamburg Boat Show incorporated 30,000 square meters (328,000 square feet) of exhibition floor space, 298 exhibitors, more than 170 boats, 3 lecture forums, and plenty of information all about water sports. "The opening days were quieter than expected. Over the weekend the turnout was good, with many boaters, families and water sports enthusiasts coming to see what was on offer," said Torsten Conradi. "We're satisfied with the first edition. Many water sports enthusiasts came to shop – both for boats and for equipment and accessories. The lecture forums were also very well frequented. The atmosphere in the halls was positive throughout, and we enjoyed organizing and cooperating with the DBSV and Hamburg Messe und Congress," reported project lead Dirk Kreidenweiß from Messe Friedrichshafen. The managing director of Hamburg Messe und Congress, Bernd Aufderheide, added: "With the premiere of the Hamburg Boat Show, we successfully provided another attractive offer in Hamburg for water sports enthusiasts. This makes me glad not only for the visitors but especially for the exhibitors who had wished for this exhibition. The DBSV, Messe Friedrichshafen, and Hamburg Messe und Congress pooled their strengths to establish a successful maiden event that demands a followup.“
The exhibitors, too, were satisfied: "The fair was really outstanding. Selling boats here definitely works, as we found out. We're satisfied, and we also got great feedback from our customers about the fair. The visitors were very well informed and came to us with very concrete inquiries. You could tell that most of the visitors were water sports enthusiasts. The first Hamburg Boat Show was an unqualified success. We'll be back next year," summarized Henning Mittelmann, managing director of Mittelmann's Werft boatbuilding. Frank Kuhlmann of Schwern Yachts saw it similarly: "The first Hamburg Boat Show was a complete success. The audience was well informed, with lots of sailors and experts in attendance. We had a great exhibition that reached the target audience in the north very well. This is a good meeting point for the industry. The exhibition was very well organized and we'll be back next year." Finn Möller, managing director of Herman Gotthard GmbH, also drew a favorable balance, saying, "After a slow start on Wednesday, the fair developed well. The Hamburg Boat Show is obligatory for us. We had excellent and expert visitors at our booth. It's great, what they set up here. All in all, our expectations were fulfilled. The HBS is the proof that the idea to have such a fair was a good one."
From inflatables to sailing yachts, from kiteboards to stand-up paddling (SUP) boards, the Hamburg Boat Show had all manner of water sports equipment. It also boasted a colorful program of supporting events: On Sunday was the SUP Team Challenge, in which eight two-person teams "paddled it out" on an obstacle course in Hall B7. The winning team will be heading to the British Virgin Islands in the Caribbean for the SUP Challenge powered by the Moorings. The Ocean Film Tour on Friday evening was sold out. The indoor surfing and SUP tryout pools were also very popular with the visitors. Numerous evening events invited visitors to celebrate and network – and were very well attended by visitors and exhibitors alike.
The next Hamburg Boat Show will set sail for the wide world of water sports from October 23 to 27, 2019.