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GMT XXL World - At the Fort Lauderdale Boat Show

GMT XXL World At the Fort Lauderdale Boat Show

The five-day outdoor boat show reels in quality buyers, boosts local tourism and restores hope for the marine industry and local business community.

Representing the first major marine event to take place since April, the 61st Annual Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show, the largest in-water boat show in the world, gathered locals and visitors alike from Oct. 28 – Nov. 1 to attend the five-day outdoor show with hundreds of exhibitors and boats on display across nearly 90 acres and six city sites. With Informa’s comprehensive AllSecure health and safety standards in place, FLIBS showcased a safety-first boat show experience with a multitude of show enhancements and new guidelines enforced throughout the show.  These measures included mandatory face coverings and social distancing, a contactless ticketing system, added and expanded entrances, widened docks, ongoing cleaning of all areas before, during and after each day’s events, plus numerous hand sanitizing stations and CDC signage posted throughout the event

The 61st annual Fort Lauderdale international boat show

The XXL World edition of GMT Magazine was distributed to the guests of the VIP Club. © FLIBS

This year’s show was a testament to the pent-up demand to get out on the water drawing quality buyers ready to purchase and anxious to get outdoors to see new product and meet with brokers, manufacturers and marine suppliers they have not been able to meet with this year. As boating has gained popularity since March with record-setting boat sales in the U.S., early reports from FLIBS’ exhibitors show the continued trend, with many reporting numerous sales, quality buyers and new prospects.  

The 61st annual Fort Lauderdale international boat show

Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show © FLIBS

“FLIBS has been a huge success for us, especially considering the challenging circumstances, and has exceeded our expectations in sales activity and attendance,” said Pat Healey, Viking Yachts President and CEO. “In the first three days, we sold more than a dozen boats between Viking and Valhalla Boatworks, including two 92s and a 68. Our new product has done extremely well, with two Viking 54s and Valhalla 46s selling as well. Informa has done a tremendous job keeping the event safe and fun for everyone. FLIBS is an extremely important part of the industry and we support it 100 percent.”

The 61st annual Fort Lauderdale international boat show

Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show © FLIBS

“Our numbers are all incredibly positive, attendance of the first two days of the show was actually up 12% vs 2019,” said Federico Ferrante, President Azimut-Benetti Americas.  “Overall attendance was down only 20%, which given the circumstances is an achievement.  Last, but surely not least, we contracted 16 units at the show, which is only slightly less than our average FLIBS!”

The 61st annual Fort Lauderdale international boat show

Visitors of the international boat shows and yacht owners often overlap with connoisseurs beautiful watches; they can find the XXL World edition of GMT Magazine distributed at the main yacht shows all over the world. © FLIBS

“Even though this is a scaled down event, it has proven to be one of the best shows for HMY in a long time,” said Tim Derrico, Director of Sales, HMY Yachts. “While the crowd has been moderate, most people are yacht owners or buyers. We have contracted more yachts than expected.”

The 61st annual Fort Lauderdale international boat show

Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show © FLIBS

“FLIBS 2020 will be one show that none of us in the marine industry will ever forget - and not just because of the masks and the hand sanitizer - but also the busy docks, the contracts that came in when nobody expected it, and an overwhelming sense of community,” said Bob Denison, Denison Yachting. “Our brokers, marketing team, and support staff all had a fun and safe boat show. We sold more boats and yachts than we expected. From day one to day five, the docks were buzzing. The show made life here in South Florida feel sort of normal again.  As a local kid, I don’t remember an October here in Fort Lauderdale without the boat show. The entire Denison family is grateful that the show took place. Not only was it a good event for the city at large, it was meaningful to thousands of small business like ours.”

The 61st annual Fort Lauderdale international boat show

Visitors of the international boat shows and yacht owners often overlap with connoisseurs beautiful watches; they can find the XXL World edition of GMT Magazine distributed at the main yacht shows all over the world. © FLIBS