Congress 2013 comes to London
For 2013 IFBSO Congress comes to London. Hosted by the British Marine Federation, which celebrates its centenary this year, it will be taking place in the historic Thameside borough of Greenwich, home to the the record-breaking 19th century tea clipper the Cutty Sark (below), the National Maritime Museum (right) and the Greenwich Observatory.
Congress runs from June 11-14. For IFBSO members, registration is on Tuesday June 11 and the session programme starts on Wednesday June 12 – note, a day earlier in the week than usual. As a result the gala dinner which concludes the programme will also be early, taking place on Friday June 14 in the Houses of Parliament in the Palace of Westminster.
Members who haven't already received the invitation and booking form can download one from this site.
IFBSO Congress goes to Africa
IFBSO held its 51st Congress in conjunction with ICOMIA in Cape Town, South Africa at the end of April.
Congress presents a unique opportunity for managers of the world’s leading boat shows to come together and discuss issues that affect them all: improving the product, increasing revenue, reducing costs, supporting the marine industry and ultimately ensuring the long-term viability of the event. Although the credit crunch is now three years in the past, its devastating effect on the boating market has never gone away and the industry is still suffering the fallout. In the world’s largest boating market, the US, turnover has halved and hundreds of companies have closed their doors. For boat shows, this means fewer exhibitors, fewer visitors, and an increasing sense that business will never return to pre-crunch levels.
With this in mind, IFBSO and ICOMIA this year doubled the number of joint sessions where the two organisations come together. This provided the opportunity for a number of valuable cross-industry panel discussions on the subject of broadening the demographic variety of the boating market, boosting falling boat show attendances and helping exhibitors to maximise their return on investment.
IFBSO is currently developing a new free resource for exhibitors focusing on, but not limited to, exhibitor training. Although there are many aspects of a show presence that can affect an exhibitor's results, it is generally felt that well-trained and motivated stand staff are the key - their performance is the low-hanging fruit where small changes can produce the greatest improvements.
Following the retirement of New Zealand’s Peter Busfield from the Executive Committee, Sue Thomson of Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show was elected to replace him, ensuring continued representation of IFBSO’s Southern Hemisphere member shows on the Committee.
The AGM, held on the last day of Congress, admitted a new IFBSO member in the shape of the China Xiamen International Boat Show. Just a few miles from north Taiwan, Xiamen is the site of a major new development combining marina, boating and boatbuilding facilities and exhibition centre poised to take advantage of the thawing of relations and opening up of tourist traffic between the two areas.
The Federation also welcomed back an old face, as the Grand Pavois of La Rochelle, France, rejoined after a gap of three years. Christophe Vieux. manager of the show, which this year celebrates its 40th anniversary, is "very happy to be back with Grand Pavois as a member of IFBSO".
IFBSO partners with IBI
IFBSO has entered into a strategic partnership with International Boat Industry, the trade magazine for the recreational marine industry worldwide. Under the agreement, IBI is to act as our media partner and brand ambassador, supporting IFBSO's ongoing mission to help our members develop and run first-class boat shows and marine trade exhibitions around the globe.