From the Captain’s Chair: A Look Back at the 58th Annual FLIBS November 30, 2017
I sincerely hope everyone enjoyed the 58th Annual Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show. We’ve heard great success stories and were thrilled that the weather and economy enabled record attendance throughout the five days of the show, and the changes that were implemented proved to be very valuable. The long-standing Thursday through Monday format was adapted to Wednesday through Sunday, as the business of finance no longer needs to wait for a weekday to be accomplished. Throughout the show exhibitors said, “never has a Monday felt as good as Wednesday,” with an unprecedented number of vessel introductions recorded on that opening day. Informa Exhibitions’ acquisition of Show Management provided additional capital for improvements that benefited exhibitors and attendees alike.
In a world where technology advances at an extraordinary pace, we embraced new ways to make the experience of purchasing tickets and visiting the show easier than ever, with online purchasing of individual, multi-day, and VIP packages, along with links to accommodations during the show that included hotel rooms, as well as AirBNB and VRBO options, which are popular choices.
As security concerns continue to mount for events worldwide, potential threats require constant transformations in safety and security measures at the show, including magnetometers, individual bag checks, security cameras, drones, increased numbers of security personnel, local police agencies, and plain clothes agents. Additionally, infrastructure upgrades that might otherwise go unnoticed included composite floating docks, raised flooring for the exhibit tents, upgraded electricity, enhanced wi-fi capabilities, and improved signage, to name a few.
With your help and participation, FLIBS continues to be the best boat show on the planet. I know we will continue to improve and excel as we work together moving forward.
November is such an important month, not just because FLIBS is critical to the success of many marine businesses, but because of the opportunity to spend time connecting with family and friends and reflecting on those things for which we can be truly thankful.
I’m thankful our extended marine industry family has a generous and giving heart that is always willing to donate to a charitable cause, volunteer on a community project, and especially lend a helping hand to a family in need through our Habitat for Humanity sponsorship and partnership.
Many thanks for all you do for the industry and our community!