Greeted by warm sunny weekend weather, crowds of visitors made their way down to the Miami International Boat Show. Featuring more than 3,000 boats on display, the largest annual boat show in North America returned to the Miami Beach Convention Center, Sea Isle Marina and Miamarina at Bayside in mid February.
The excitement in the air was palpable as show visitors, exhibitors and Valentine's Day vacationers filled accommodations throughout Miami Beach. As is often the case at the Miami Show, many exhibits featured unique attractions designed to engage the senses and draw in visitors. In addition, numerous new watercraft, engines and accessories were on display on the show floor or available for demo at the show's in-water venue.
Last year, the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) reported the event drew approximately 102,000 attendees, many traveling from outside of the state. The NMMA, which owns and operates the show, arranged for Thomas J. Murray and Associates to conduct a study to determine the economic impact the five-day show has on the state of Florida.
"The results of the new study illustrate the show's significant impact not only on South Florida's local economy but to the entire state and recreational boating industry,' says Cathy Rick-Joule, Show Manager. "It's one of the world's premier boating events – a barometer for annual boat sales, a gathering of the newest and best products in recreational boating, and boost to our economy.'
According to the results released by NMMA, it's estimated that last year's show generated an economic output of US $597 million in Florida as a result of out-of-state purchases and expenditures. It's estimated that the show supports 6,592 jobs. The study also says total estimated sales by Florida companies during the 2013 event reached US $312.2 million, and total excise and sales tax generated with Florida as a result of the show was US $30.4 million.
NMMA's final attendance numbers from this year's event as well as post-show feedback from exhibitors will follow shortly after the show's conclusion.