IBEX attendance down 14 percent

BROOKLIN, Maine – Preliminary figures for the 2008 International Boat Builders’ Exposition and Conference (IBEX), Oct. 6-8, indicate 3,924 qualified people were in attendance, down 14.1 percent from IBEX 2007, organizers reported in a statement yesterday. International guests from 62 countries attended, which accounted for 12.5 percent of verified attendance.

Despite the decline, a majority of the 750 exhibitors reported it was business as usual as most of the leading boat builders came to see, buy and place orders, despite the harsh economic climate, according to organizers.

“Given market conditions we were not surprised by the drop in attendance and are heartened by the quality of attendees who invested in IBEX 2008,” said Carl Cramer, IBEX show co-director. “In many ways, this was an extremely effective show with leaders of today and tomorrow emphasizing our ability to withstand economic downturns and giving us hope, as an industry, for the future.”

“We were able to deliver quality attendance in the current economic climate to further reinforce IBEX as the leading boat building event of its kind,” said Kathleen Clickett, IBEX show co-director. “We heard a great deal of positive feedback on the show floor and were pleased to hear so many exhibitors had an exceptional show.”

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