By David Gee
What if….we could offer you the opportunity to hear firsthand from boating industry insiders such as Frank Hugelmeyer, Gus Blakely, Bryan Redmond and two dozen others? What if you could get the latest economic news straight from Washington? What if you had the opportunity to share best practices and lessons learned and network not only with others from the boating industry, but also in the outdoor recreation space such as powersports dealers?
We’ll get things going on Sunday afternoon from 4–5 p.m. with the 13th annual Boating Industry Movers & Shakers Award. It recognizes innovative leaders and pioneers in the recreational boating industry who embrace the challenge of change. People who not only make their own companies better but brighten the future of the entire industry. Editor-in-chief Adam Quandt will interview this year’s winner in a wide-ranging conversation that is sure to be entertaining, insightful, and informative.
Monday, November 6
First thing Monday morning, we’ll caffeinate you, and then combine with the attendees from Powersports Business Accelerate Conference and OPE Business Dealer Forum to hear the opening keynote speaker Curtis Dubay, chief economist in the Economic Policy Division at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.
His presentation, “Is the economy revving up, idling, or stalling out?” will cover inflation, the Fed, and interest rates and what all that means for consumer spending.
He’ll also discuss potential policy changes, the impact of the 2024 elections on the economy, and more. Based in Washington, D.C., Dubay has access to real-time government data, and tracks the condition of the economy, analyzes the impact of public policy on economic growth, and runs the Chamber’s Chief Economists Committee.
Following that will be the always popular and much anticipated recurring session “The state of recreational boating in America” panel discussion.
This year we are thrilled to welcome Frank Hugelmeyer, President/CEO at National Marine Manufacturers Association, Gus Blakely, Executive Vice President, Division Head Marine at Suzuki Marine U.S.A, Bryan Redmond, Co-Founder and CEO of Suntex Marinas, as well as Jeff Husby, president and general manager of Regal & Nautique of Orlando, president and CEO of WaterSports Central, and reigning Boating Industry Top 100 Dealer of the Year.
This is always the most popular session of the conference, and we’ll discuss topics such as workforce, inflation, supply chain, inventory issues, consumer demand, and a myriad of other challenges and opportunities facing the recreational boating industry. They’ll take your questions as well.
In the past we have been fortunate to have boating industry A-listers such as Bill Yeargin, Aine Denari, and Ben Speciale to name a few. The only unfavorable comment we have received is that people wanted it to last longer, so this year we allotted lots of extra time. You shouldn’t miss this!
After lunch we’ll hear from NMMA’s senior government affairs leader Callie Hoyt as she details the recreational boating industry’s top legislative priorities. We’ll get an update on Capitol Hill, and learn about measures designed to address small businesses, infrastructure, and trade.
Next, we’ll have some numbers! How will 2023 boat sales rank historically? What are some trends that can be gleaned from the data? What segments surged this year? Which ones are lagging? Industry analysts Ryan Kloppe, Director of Sales at Statistical Surveys, Inc., Aaron Carver, Director of Data Services at Lightspeed, and Robert Grant, Director of Manufacturer Solutions at Lightspeed DMS offer their insights from their analysis and data.
Then we’re thrilled to welcome back John Adey, President, of the American Boat & Yacht Council, and Sarah Devlin, Accreditation Director, as they deliver a fun, interactive presentation on workforce development. ABYC is the essential source of technical information in the marine industry and a leader in marine technician education.
A combined reception with the powersports and outdoor power equipment folks wraps up our first day.
Tuesday, November 7
We’ll start the next morning with a combined keynote on “Emotionally intelligent leadership.” Studies have shown that up to 80% of our future success depends on EI (emotional intelligence) rather than IQ. In a succinct, entertaining, and insightful narrative, motivational speaker Stephen Barth will detail exactly what emotional intelligence is and how to apply it personally and professionally.
Last year at Boating Industry ELEVATE SUMMIT we talked electric boats. This year we’re discussing the advancement, innovation, and availability of sustainable marine fuels in the marketplace. Hear from Jeff Wasil, Director of Environment, Health and Safety Compliance for NMMA, along with Brunswick Chief Sustainability Officer Jennifer Koenig, and Hyperfuels President Jess Hewitt.
Next you can hear from four amazing, accomplished women as they share their experiences working – and exceling in – the recreational boating industry. The panel includes Kim Sweers, aka the “Boat Boss,” managing partner of FB Marine Group, a Boating Industry Top 100 boat dealer based in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, Christine Carlson, Marketing Director for Volvo Penta of the Americas, Nikki Storey, president of the Great Lakes Boat Building School, and Rachel Auslander, Director, Partnerships & Development, Recreational Boating & Fishing Foundation. Veteran marine industry PR pro Wanda Kenton Smith moderates.
The Boating Industry consumer panel session will then provide some proprietary demographic, psychographic, behavioral, purchase-based, and consumption data sets and insights into the behaviors and buying habits of today’s boating consumer.
Adam Quandt returns to moderate the Boating Industry Top Dealers panel discussion, where you get the chance to hear from – and interact with – some of the top boat dealers in the country.
And last, but certainly not least, Boating Industry announces its 2023 Top 100 Award at a special invite-only, black-tie gala. This event celebrates all 2023 Top 100 Award winners, including the Boating Industry 40 Under 40, Women Making Waves and of course, the 2023 Top Dealers.
And there you have it. The only thing that’s missing is you! Make your plans to be in Dallas November 5-7 by registering here. You’ll be better for it, and so will your organization.