SARASOTA, Fla. - With only five weeks to go before the Super Boat Expo was scheduled to take place, organizers have decided to cancel the event, returning 100 percent of all deposits, it was reported in a recently released letter to exhibitors.
Organizers, including industry veteran and show president Bob Black, cited disappointing results at area shows and a tough year for dealers as reasons why the first-year high performance boat show didn't attract the number of exhibitors originally expected.
“While we had enough promises of 'we'll be there' and 'high interest' to fill the Convention Center, we had very few contracts and deposits in the boat area,” organizers explained in the letter. “The booth spaces, on the other hand, did well, but we couldn't put a high-performance boat show on with promises from the boat companies and dealers. It wouldn't have been fair to those exhibitors who did come and it certainly would not have been fair to the public who came looking to see the boats.”
In the letter, the show staff apologized for “not being able to make it go,” explaining that they had learned a lot. They, in fact, suggested their expectations that the boat builders would get “deeply involved” may have been off base. The builders looked to their dealers to make the commitment, and with many dealers having a tough year due in part to “the hurricane fallout of the past couple of years,” that didn't happen at the level organizers hoped for.
“We'll return in the future, much better prepared to put on a show that totally works from everyone's financial and aesthetic point of view,” organizers concluded.
The Super Boat Expo was scheduled to take place March 31 through April 2 at the Sarasota-Bradenton International Convention Center.
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