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This years ASMEX Conference held at the InterContinental Sanctuary Cove Resort from 17th – 18th May immediately prior to the Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show and Gold Coast Marine Expo was a huge success with a notable increase in the number of delegates from previous years.
Delegates came from all over the world to hear high quality speakers present on how to build a business for the future.
Delegate registrations for the 2017 ASMEX Conference will open in December this year. Dates and location for the annual ASMEX Conference will be confirmed later this year.
Where permission has been obtained from speakers, presentations are available to delegates who attended the conference. If there is a presentation you are interested in then please contact email@example.com.
Photos from the two day conference are now available, click here to view.
Conference Day one
As the first day of ASMEX drew to a close, the overwhelming theme was one of the Australian industry banding together and moving forward together.
MC Martin Redmayne gave a rousing speech to open the first day, drawing on his market research to point to a cautiously optimistic industry that was starting to move. From his perspective outside of the Australian industry, Redmayne pointed out that the many challenges facing the European and US industries can create opportunities for the Australian market.
Political instability, safety concerns, overcrowding and privacy issues are practically non-existent in Australian waters, meaning it’s important to market those elements that Australia lacks, alongside its many selling points.
Thom Dammrich, of the US National Marine Manufacturers association was more optimistic about the state of the market. Dammrich cited a slow but steady increase over the last five years; a trend which he believes will continue.
The Hon. Richard Colbeck addressed the attendees and expressed his intention to support the industry. A key issue being greater marketing support for the industry and better access to foreign flagged vessels wanting to cruise and have a refit while in Australia.
Steve Fisher led the charge on the refit front. Fisher discussed the importance of going to the clients, highlighting the tyranny of distance in the wider industry’s perception of Australia. The refit panel which followed agreed identifying relationships and constant communication as key to attracting and retaining superyacht clients for refit and repair.
After lunch, the theme of growing a future proof business continued as three European industry leaders spoke on their views of the industry. Nazir Tagi of Benetti Asia, Martin Baum of Pantaenius and Paul Archer of Arrow Yacht Services Monaco, all shared their views of the Asia Pacific market and how Australian companies can best capture that audience.
The day’s sessions wrapped up with Marcus Blackmore, yacht owner, speaking on future development for companies already in existence, which the many business owners in attendance listened to closely.
Already on day one delegates came away with the knowledge and tools to meet their aims of steady growth and planning for the future of the marina industry in Australia.
Conference Day two
The 2016 Australian Superyacht & Marine Export Conference (ASMEX) closed with the full programme giving delegates a comprehensive picture of the Australian industry.
The conference, organised by the Australian Marine Export Group, was once again well attended, with a mix of international and local delegates. One of the highlights of the closing day of the conference was Fraser Yachts’ Roberto Giorgi speaking candidly on his perception of the region as a cruising destination. He pointed to the unique experiences the Asia-Pacific region holds and exhorted conference attendees not to discount the importance of prospective buyers chartering yachts, to the new build sales funnel.
Eduardo Read of the Dominican Republic’s Read Maritime Group discussed his market’s perception of Australian-built boats. The Riviera distributor relayed that he was very proud to represent Australian brands, with his customers reporting trust and confidence in Australian products. Read also believes the quality of Australian exports has improved over the last three years.
From the New Zealand Marine Industry Association, Peter Busfield spoke to the steady gains being seen across the Tasman, particularly in the powerboat market. Another area of strength highlighted was the refit market, which led Busfield to his next point. “New Zealand is just one of the jewels in the crown of this region,” said Busfield, pointing to the importance of attracting yachts for refit and cruising to the region as a whole.
Next on the programme was Simon Banks of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority. Banks educated delegates on plans of management to both protect the biodiversity of the region, and protect the experiences available to visitors. Banks was joined onstage by a panel of Australian charter and destination experts formed of Luke McCaul, Abell Point Marina, Cameron Bray of Northrop & Johnson Australia, Matt Templeton of the Superyacht Group Great Barrier Reef and Jo Howard of Ocean Alliance.
The panel spoke at length on the positive elements cruising within Australia, including sustainable accredited marinas, safety, existing infrastructure, tourism attractions, straightforward processes, privacy and an extremely welcoming culture.
“Charter in Australia is at a tipping point,” said Cameron Bray. “We need to encourage captains to use an agent to secure the best experience possible, so that those captains go back to their networks and discuss Australian cruising in the most positive terms possible.
Redmayne delivered the closing address highlighting the points which stood out as important to the industry throughout the conference – forward momentum, collaboration and highlighting experiences.
The Conference certainly was touted by members as being one of the best networking events in the industry. We have had amazing feedback from all those who attended with many saying that it was one of the best conferences they have attended and would most definitely attend again next year.
The team here in the office would like to thank everyone’s support of the 2016 ASMEX Conference.
Thank you to all our sponsors who’s support ensures that this remains a successful event for industry by industry.
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The staff at AIMEX are always happy to help you, please don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any queries, comments or concerns.
P: 03 9867 6625