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At the Helm: It’s all about product

By Jonathan Sweet

More than anything else, it’s new product that pushes boat, engine and accessory sales. 

Whether it’s a new, more efficient engine or a feature-loaded boat model, boaters
are driven to pursue the latest, greatest thing. Without innovation, there’s no burning desire to buy.

We know that – and we also know that new product information is one of the most important areas you want to see more coverage of. That’s what prompted us to launch the Boating Industry Top Products awards, now in their fourth year.

This year, we’ve selected 50 top products from hundreds of nominations. Companies could enter their own products, but we also considered nominations from dealers and suppliers, as well as other interesting products we saw at IBEX, the Miami International Boat Show and other events. 

These products – introduced or updated since the beginning of 2016 – were chosen for their innovation, their impact on the industry, creativity, design aesthetic and more. 

The most important factor is how these products will help drive more revenue, either by encouraging more buyers to take the plunge, by improving the boat-owning experience or simply by helping companies run more efficiently.

You can see the full offering of this year’s Top Products starting on p. 22. 

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I also want to take this opportunity to recognize this year’s Top 100 Leadership Alliance. These are the companies that make the program possible through their generous, year-round support. This year’s Leadership Alliance includes Wells Fargo Commercial Distribution Finance, Manheim Specialty Auctions, Volvo Penta, Sunbrella Marine, Brunswick Dealer Advantage, the Marine Retailers Association of the Americas and the National Marine Manufacturers Association.

And if you’re interested in being part of this year’s Top 100 list, there’s still time to apply. Find more information and the online application at BoatingIndustry.com/top-100/application.   

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