[dropcap]B[/dropcap]oot Düsseldorf 2018 set records this year: 1,923 exhibitors from 68 different countries presented yachts, boats and accessories for all water sports activities on 220,000 square metres of stand space.
There were crowds of people in the 16 exhibition halls and boot 2018 confirmed its position as the top trade fair emphatically, with 247,000 visitors from 94 different countries (2017: 242,000 visitors). The trade fair succeeded in increasing the number of international visitors too. The countries from which most visitors came were the Netherlands, followed by Belgium, Switzerland, Italy, Austria and France. Most of the trade visitors from overseas came from the USA, China and Australia.
Petros Michelidakis, boot Director, outlined the situation succinctly:
“Our strategy of continuing to internationalise boot has worked. This is apparent now in our visitor structure. There has been as well a generation shift too; the visitors to boot are considerably younger.”
While the trade fair is managing outstandingly well to combine the features of a classic boat trade fair with the appeal of an up-to-the-minute trend and fun sports event. The “new” Beach World with the 65-metre-long flatwater pool and the standing wave “THE WAVE” proved to be a real attraction to young visitors.
The excellently visited sailing halls were crowded during the nine days of the trade fair. The large sailing yachts over 60 feet long and the sailing catamarans were the particular centre of attention. The manufacturers had taken account of this and presented more large sailing yachts than ever before. The luxury yacht hall 6 was more popular than even before – with both suppliers and visitors. Every single square metre was booked and the hall provided a splendid opportunity to see the luxurious models. According to the manufacturers, there is a general trend towards sophisticated, electronic equipment on the yachts as well as towards high-quality interior design ideas.
The buyers of luxury yachts are certainly becoming younger and younger, since there are more and more wealthy young people who want to invest in expensive boats and experience the freedom they give to enjoy their time out on the water. Capacity utilisation at the shipyards is very good in the meantime and it is expected that boot 2018 will stimulate business even more.