Grow boating initiative making progress

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – After more than 70 industry leaders met for nearly seven hours Wednesday, National Marine Manufacturers Association President Thom Dammrich said progress continues on a plan to help grow boating.

“I’m very pleased,” Dammrich said in a phone interview Wednesday. “In a nutshell, we’re making progress toward a fall announcement.”

Yesterday’s meeting was the group’s second, following a gathering last fall in Chicago, co-sponsored by the NMMA, which discussed the problems facing the industry and possible solutions. As a result of that meeting, three task forces were established to address several of the concerns raised.

Those task forces presented progress reports yesterday, and Dammrich said the group, after hearing the presentations, “indicated agreement with what each was doing, and told them to keep moving forward.”

Fourth task force formed
And a fourth task force was also created at Wednesday’s meeting. Its mission will be to deal with improving the sales and service experience for customers in the marine industry.

The task force has not yet been officially named or a chairperson chosen, but Dammrich said the position would ultimately be filled by a dealer.

The sales and service topic had been on the agenda at the last October’s meeting, but although no action was taken at that time, Dammrich said the group decided yesterday that sales and service was a “key issue” facing the industry, and the decision to create the new task force was made.

All the task forces will be meeting regularly between now and this fall, but Dammrich said the large group wouldn’t meet again until after the summer.

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