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Optimistic outlook for the industry from European Yachting Festival - MarineBusinessWorld newsletter

by Peter Rendle 21 Sep 23:00 BST
Cannes Yachting Festival © Ensign Yachts

As we come to grips with an economy in Australia that is struggling to get under control, news from Europe sheds a bit of light on how things are improving.

Brunswick Corporation reported another record-setting display at the Cannes Yachting Festival, one of the premier trade shows in Europe, with outboard engine market share gains, major new product launches, and a global product award. Mercury Marine set another record for engine share at the event, with 66% of the outboard engines on display, further solidifying its market share leadership position in Europe. This also marks the third consecutive year that Mercury has set record share in Cannes as demand continues to be strong for high horsepower Mercury propulsion from European boat builders and consumers.

In addition, Brunswick Boat Group launched Navan, its new premium adventure boat brand which is part of the Quicksilver family, and the first two models in the Navan line-up, the C30 and S30. Both models were extremely well received by the public with orders exceeding expectations during the show and strong dealer enthusiasm to carry the product.

Further assurance that the future looks bright comes from another event due early next year: boot Düsseldorf 2024 is heading for a top result. The international market leaders will again be on board 20-28 January and the world's largest yachts and water sports show will follow on from its excellent pre-pandemic results.

Commenting on this, Wolfram Diener, President & CEO of Messe Düsseldorf, says: "We have had very successful talks with the manufacturers over the summer months and feel great enthusiasm and anticipation for boot 2024. In January we will also be able to welcome back brands that took a break this year. In particular, we see very high international attendance from exhibitors. This means boot 2024 will reach the highest level, present wide and varied ranges for both water sports and destinations and will again position itself as the world-leading show for this industry."

Continuing our thread of safety being of prime importance in our industry, its reassuring to know that there are many volunteers willing to contribute. Over 100 Marine Rescue NSW volunteers and staff from the Monaro and Illawarra regions teamed up with NSW Police Marine Area Command and Surf Life Saving NSW for a major Search and Rescue Exercise at Batemans Bay over the weekend. The scenario was held to test rescuers capability, multi-agency teamwork and communication in responding to a simulated emergency situation in offshore conditions. Sergeant Russel Agland from Marine Area Command said the weekend's training scenario involved an overturned vessel located east of Point Upright.

It also refreshing to know that the industry is helping to save lives on our beaches. From humble beginnings in 1907, the Surf Life Saving movement in Australia has grown to become an iconic organisation comprising over 190,000 members, all committed to keeping the beach-going public safe. It is now one of the largest volunteer emergency services groups anywhere in the world. While the original surf lifesavers had little more than their own skill and determination to help those in trouble, Surf Life Saving has continued to move with the times and allow technology to advance its ability to save lives.

This has included traditional patrolling from the beach to the use of rescue watercraft, and even our eyes in the sky, the Westpac Lifesaver Rescue Helicopters and drones in use today. Since 2009, Surf Life Saving Australia's partnership with Bombardier Recreational Products has made a difference to countless families with their equipment allowing surf lifesavers to save thousands of lives.

The Boating Industry Association of Australia (BIA) has experienced its own ups and downs over the years. However, having navigated its way through Covid, despite the loss of boat show revenue, the association continues to be active on behalf of its members. The BIA today announced a partnership with Century Batteries, Australia's oldest battery manufacturer with a history of designing, manufacturing and supplying batteries since 1928.

BIA CEO Andrew Scott said, "BIA is thrilled to partner with Century Batteries to further our mission of enhancing boating experiences while promoting safe, responsible and enjoyable boating, as well as environmentally sustainable practices. "It's great to have a quality brand like Century Batteries on board to help industry and the boating public to power up their battery needs. It has not missed our attention that breakdowns while boating due to battery issues can and do happen out on the water, and this partnership will help us highlight the importance of choosing quality batteries as well as help promote their proper care and maintenance."

New products this week: Mastervolt, a global leader in innovative autonomous power solutions, has announced the launch of its 36V and 48V Mac Plus DC-DC chargers. Featuring new bi-directional technology, the new models provide a quick, safe, and consistent charge for both service and starter batteries, with a stable output that powers even the most sensitive loads in boats, RVs or any off-grid system.

"Mastervolt is dedicated to providing premium solutions for all power needs and we are excited to announce four new models joining our Mac Plus series with new innovative features," said Eric Lindquist, VP and General Manager, Power Systems at Navico Group. "Charging service batteries of a vehicle or vessel can be challenging due to voltage drops and insufficient charging. With the Mac Plus DC-DC charger, both service and starter batteries are charged efficiently, quickly and safely thanks to the revolutionary bi-directional technology that uses either side as an input or output. The Mac Plus provides consistency and peace of mind to users, providing stable power when they need it most."

Intellian Technologies, a global provider of resilient multi-constellation, feature-rich satellite user terminals and communications solutions, and OneWeb, the low Earth orbit satellite communications company, have today announced a new product portfolio of Intellian Flat Panel user terminals for use on OneWeb's network. Intellian's Flat Panel Series is a suite of both Pro and Compact user terminals that deliver exceptional performance in sleek, small-footprint, and lightweight form factors. Designed for Land Fixed, Land Mobile, Maritime and Government markets, they're a game-changer for customers globally requiring low profile, easy installation, high performance.

Through the Pro and Compact Flat Panels, customers have a choice of four different user terminals to address their specific market needs and use cases. Both the Pro and Compact models come in two versatile configurations: a fixed enterprise terminal and a mobility terminal. These Flat Panel terminals are meticulously designed to meet the unique demands of end users, ensuring reliable connectivity everywhere in the world, on land and at sea.

Not forgetting sailors, congratulations go to B&G for their recent award in the USA. The leading sailing electronics manufacturer has been awarded a 2023 Newport for New Products Award for its new Hercules® sailing processor. Selected by a panel of industry experts, the Newport for New Products award program highlights the latest and greatest in powerboats, sailboats and products.

"We are honoured that Hercules was selected for a 2023 Newport for New Products Award," said Kevin Steinbraker, VP and General Manager, Digital Systems of Navico Group. "Our team's passion for sailing drives the innovation we produce, and this product is a testament to that. This processor offers greater compatibility across our suite of sailing electronics and enhances the sailing experience for advanced cruising and racing sailors alike."

And I know many fishos will be pleased to know that the Alvey brand of reels will continue to be produced. In the world of Australian fishing, there are few names as iconic and cherished as Alvey. Since Charles Alvey produced the first sidecast reel in 1920, Alvey has been synonymous with crafting the most durable and reliable fishing reels right here in Australia. Today, Gowings are thrilled to continue the Alvey legacy.

Gowings is an Australian-owned investment company with a rich and proud history dating back to 1868. John Gowing explains how the purchase of Alvey Reels fits within Gowings: "We saw an opportunity to keep an icon in Australian hands, and took it. Gowings also owns FCS, an iconic surfing brand, and we think Alvey would complement our interests in ocean sports. Philosophically we want to encourage sustainable enjoyment of our seas and oceans. Demonstrating this commitment is our 1% for the Oceans pledge, with proceeds going to the Gowings Whale Trust which aims to fund positive change in our oceans".

Stay positive!
Peter Rendle -

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