YachtCouncil sites gaining strength

PALM BEACH, Fla. - Five years after its launch, broker-driven yacht listing service, YachtCouncil has begun to focus on the business of selling boats, according to a recent story on www.tmcnet.com.

"We're recognized by the industry as a premier player," Steven Myers, president of Marine Solutions, the company that produces and manages the multiple-listing service for the International Yacht Council, told the newspaper. "Our goal is to promote the professional yacht broker."

Marine Solutions produces two sites: YachtCouncil.com, a site for consumers to search for boats, and YachtCouncil.org, a members-only site for brokers to manage their listings.

Last year, about 3,200 vessels totaling $2.5 billion were sold through YachtCouncil, the newspaper reported. The site has grown to more than 10,000 central listings - most for vessels longer than 50 feet, which are updated instantly when brokers make changes - with over 1,400 individual members from about 400 brokerage houses, including most of the industry leaders. It is drawing an average of 17,000 visitors a day, Myers said.

"We all use it,” George Jousma, president of Fort Lauderdale-based Allied Richard Bertram Marine Group and past president of the Florida brokers association, told the newspaper. “This is our industry, and these are our boats that are listed. That's why it was founded."

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