Canadian Marine Trade Show Delivers Pleasing Outcome

Early reports from the 8th Annual Canadian Marine Dealer Trade Show, held at the International Centre November 1 to 2 in Toronto, ON, suggest orders are up compared to last year's show. C.C. Marine, CMC Electronics and Yamaha Motor Canada hosted the show, which featured approximately 110 vendors in 50,000 square-feet of show floor space.

“It was a good show with good support,” reports Show Manager and C.C. Marine's Bruce Hamer. “The dealer attendance was up compared to last year and in spite of the bad weather this summer the dealers needed to buy inventory and the orders looked good.”

According to Hamer it will take a few weeks still to tally the numbers from the show. However, representatives at CMC Electronics shared his optimism as well.

“All our top dealers attended,” says Rob Barkley, CMC Electronics' Director of Recreational Products Group. “I'd say orders were up. The aftermarket last year was perceived to be down because of what was happening in the world. Dealers were cautious in their buyer pattern last year for their show orders. This year I say we were up substantially, but I won't know a number for a few weeks. One factor was the currency right now, so our pricing is down. Also, everyone sold through most of their product last year, so there are a lot of empty shelves that need to be filled. Dealer confidence is in the aftermarket. It's up. It seems that 2010 will be even better.”

Barkley highlighted some of the advantages offered to dealers by placing orders at the show.

“Our vendors offer deals for buying early, and we extend those discounts to our customers,” explains Barkley. “Purchasing at this time of year saves you money. By buying in the fall you're securing the price that you're buying at. If the Canadian dollar weakens you're secured at the lower price, and if it strengthens, we adjust our pricing down to help our dealers.

Chris Shaw, a partner of The Binnacle, Halifax, NS, attended the show this year and placed orders. “We took the two days to walk the show and saw a few items that we thought were interesting and we wrote some orders for,” says Shaw. “CMC Electronics has the Raymarine product line as an exclusive, and that's the bulk of what we purchase from them. I'm already receiving some of my purchases right now. We attend the show for information and show benefits. However, there has to be a reward for attending these shows out of town. If you go to the show you get the discount, if you don't then you shouldn't.”

Craig Willoughby, of Captain Phab, said he was pleased with the show. “We have an expanded new catalogue for 2010 and we're pleased with the way the business has done.”
Bill Milne, Alex Milne Associates, had some new products on display. “This was actually our best year ever,” said Milne. “Years ago we were among the very first companies to begin marketing green, environmentally-friendly products, back long before it was considered appropriate to do so. Today, we have a depth of experience supporting a first-rate product line, and we're doing extremely well.”