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A+ for Auckland

The 2024 Auckland International Boat Show has wrapped up, with exhibitors expressing their support and endorsement.

19 March 2024

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At this year’s Auckland International Boat Show, exhibitors reported selling boats and accessories, and noted the positive sentiment from visitors to the show.

Auckland Mayor Wayne Brown added his support: “This is what it means to be in Auckland,” said Mayor Brown to the New Zealand and international marine industry companies who gathered for the event from 14 to 17 March.

“It’s events like this that make Auckland unique. We’re here celebrating the playground of Auckland – the Hauraki Gulf – and what it means to be in Auckland, and out enjoying its waters.

“I’m a keen supporter of the marine industry, a sector that provides 8,000 jobs and delivers local training that is held in high regard internationally. We’re a leader in new technologies, with our electric ferries a good example of this.”

Mayor Brown’s speech came as the marine industry presented its new releases, technology and innovation at the 2024 show, with a larger number of new releases than had previously been seen at an Auckland Boat Show.

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“Like many industries, we have our challenges at the moment,” said Auckland Boat Show Organiser Stacey Cook. “However, we’re meeting them head on.

“The Auckland Boat Show gives our industry an opportunity to show its products in the way they’re meant to be experienced – on the water.”

The show, which is held in the Viaduct Events Centre and Jellicoe Harbour, is the only boat show in New Zealand where boats can be viewed on the harbour. As New Zealanders’ appetite for the marine world grows, the show has grown, and this year featured 180 trailer boats and RIBs with a further 130 large boats berthed in Jellicoe Harbour to be explored.

“It’s a crucial show for us,” says Yamaha Marine’s Pete Dick. Yamaha Marine released its new F350 in the show’s sea trial area, with Yamaha saying the ability to demonstrate it to customers on the water is a game-changer.

Also on the water, Whakatāne boatbuilder Extreme Boats likewise had a successful show demonstrating its products, with the ability for visitors to walk through and experience the finish quality in person.

“We’ve had really great enquiries from all over the world during this show,” says Legacy Marine’s Hadley Boyle. “We’ve had keen interest from the United States, Canada and from Europe, so we’re really happy to be here.”

Fellow members of the larger end of the market, Jimmy Buffit brokers experienced solid interest during the show. “We’re finishing the show with a Maritimo 45 under contract; it’s been a great show for us,” said Broker Mitchell Thompson.

Also on the marina, brokers 36 Degrees presented a number of yachts on the water, with New Zealand debuts direct from France to be explored by showgoers. “We’ve had excellent leads, there’s no doubt that buyer behaviour is changing at shows. Enquiries have been good, numbers have been good, and reaction to the New Zealand releases to the market are bringing in a lot of interest,” said 36 Degrees Broker Jono Baker.

“The Beneteau First 44, and the tried-and-true boats which are always popular – like the Swift Trawler 41 that we’ve had at the show for the last three or four years – people just love to see them.”

“It’s been a really good show,” said Caribbean Boat’s Scott White. “Though the trailer boat market has taken a bit of a hit, the new larger range of Caribbean Boats is going really well. These larger boats sell well throughout the Coromandel, Northland and into Auckland, all up the east coast of the country, while our trailer boats are popular on the West Coast.”

Boats were also selling within the show’s on-land section. Graeme Heaphy, Makaira Boat’s Sales Manager, travels with the aluminium boat brand from its Northland factory. “We’ve sold a boat because of the show. The show demonstrates our wares so well, and it’s great to come and get the temperature of the industry.

“We love this show, we wouldn’t miss it.”

The Auckland Boat Show’s footprint spreads to the Viaduct Events Centre, with a number of stands inside the VEC demonstrating New Zealand innovations. Exhibitors include a range of brands across the industry, including engines, commercial, electrical and paint and antifoul.

“The work post-boat show will keep us busy for a month,” said Richard Cleave of HullWell. HullWell creates advanced antifoul and substrate protection for aluminium, steel, composite and timber.

From Australia, a contingent of superyacht brand and businesses attended in conjunction with Ocean Media.

Paul Miletta and Domenico Giuffrè, who run Cantiere Delle Marche Australia, attended their first Auckland Boat Show.

“It was a great opportunity to reunite with old friends and meet new ones,” Miletta commented. “We had a great four days and what a great turn out it was too!”

CdM Australia participated in an Ocean Club event with Pantaenius and Analu during the show and appreciated the occasion to speak with prospective buyers. “We were impressed by the number of big boats surrounding the show, and super excited with the location.

“The backdrop, the marinas, shipyards and developments supporting the marine industry were incredible. New Zealand offers so many great cruising itineraries with access to the South Pacific.

“It was great to put faces to the names who have been enquiring and cement some of those relationships,” Miletta continues. “We have some serious leads – owners who are interested in exploring the South Pacific, and are moving over from sailing yachts, looking for something with more range and more comforts on board.”

Angela Burlizzi, Director at Analu interiors, said: “The Auckland Boat Show was a real revelation for me, and totally unexpected. Although the show was small in terms of number of vessels on display and exhibitors compared to the international boat shows, the quality of buyers was outstanding. They are very knowledgeable, genuinely interested, and have a great zest for boating. I’ve not attended before but will definitely return.”

Brian and Jessica Gatt, Directors at Marine Protection Systems, described the show as “a great turn-out of Australian and New Zealand ingenuity, from custom and production vessels across various types of boating through to boating equipment.

“It was great to see so many premium Australian boatbuilders representing or just being at the show, and it was a great chance to catch up with everyone after the New Year break. The quality of interest for new boat sales and those owners wanting to know the latest and greatest was clear.

“Kiwis have saltwater in their veins – there is so much diversity of boating in New Zealand and in the conversations I had and the people I met; they are all so passionate.

“During our trip here, we visited many yards and boatbuilders and the level of innovation and engineering into the next generation of sail and motor boating are truly incredible and inspiring.”

The Auckland Boat Show will run again in March 2025, bringing showgoers in contact with the New Zealand and international marine industry. Known for its unique sea trial area – the only one of its kind in a New Zealand boat show – it gives attendees with the chance to experience how vessels perform on the water.

It also presents the largest collection of vessels on the water available to view in New Zealand, acting as a one-stop shop for the industry to gather with its audience in Jellicoe Harbour and the Viaduct Events Centre.

 

auckland-boatshow.com

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