Boot 2007 in Düsseldorf, Germany, is set to open with fully booked halls in all of its product segments.
From January 20-28, 1,650 exhibitors will set up shop in 17 exhibition halls, equivalent to 220,000sqm (2,368,000sqft) of floor space.
Greater international reach, an increase in the size of stands booked and exhibitor numbers that have stabilised at the top level are the three factors that characterise the 38th staging of boot Düsseldorf.
The spectrum of exhibitor nationalities participating in boot 2007 also promises a wider range of the world's yachting and watersports market than ever before. Official figures show 55 countries will be represented and almost half of the net floor space will serve as a platform for the 650 international exhibitors. All of the major shipbuilding nations, from France, Italy, the UK, Spain, the Netherlands and Northern European countries to the USA and Gulf states are represented.
The biggest international contingent comes from the Netherlands with 150 yards, suppliers and service providers, followed by Italy with 80 participants, France with 60 and the UK with 30 exhibitors.
In the boat and yacht segment, 400 international yards, dealers and importers spread across ten exhibition halls provide a product overview comprising 2,000 types of vessel. The boats will be complemented by 450 exhibitors showcasing a wide range of boat equipment, electronics, engines, accessories and high-quality functional clothing as well as marina equipment.
Hall 6, the home of large-sized yachts, will feature 70 vessels between 20m-30m (66ft-98ft) in length this year. The Superyacht Show will occupy Hall 7a and spill over into an additional area on the ground floor of Hall 7. At the information stands, 80 yards, engineers, designers and industry-specific suppliers will showcase their skills in building large yachts and superyachts.
The German watersports industry says it is optimistic about boot 2007, and Jürgen Tracht, head of the Bundesverband Wassersportwirtschaft (Federal Association of the Watersports Industry - BWVS) predicts an increase in sales this year of five to six per cent.
"The economy has turned the corner and the same can be said of our industry," he said. "Over 80 per cent of German companies active in the watersports business have a positive outlook on economic developments in the medium term. In 2006, sales of maritime products and services climbed by more than four percent."
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