Boat-Show Producers Join Forces

Merger provides high-profile venue for both sail and power vendors.

Two well-known and long-standing boat shows have just announced their merger, creating a larger, stronger show. Having been in talks since early 2007, Show Management, based in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, and Sail America, of Middletown, Rhode Island, have now officially teamed up to stage what will be known as the St. Petersburg Boat Show & Strictly Sail. The first joint-venture show is slated for December 4 to 7, 2008, in St. Petersburg, Florida.

Show Management's operational function in the new merger will be exhibitor sales, marketing, and event management; Sail America will focus on maintaining and bolstering the sailing portion of the show, including producing sailing seminars.

The show's new venue will add a dedicated sailing area to accommodate up to 50 sailboats. There will also be a unified shoreside sailboat display and three air-conditioned seminar tents for both sail and power programs. Other plans include a sizeable accessories tent to accommodate new sailing-related gear, equipment, and service vendors.

Early estimates project that about 25,000 people will attend. For more information about the event, contact Show Management (www.showmanahgement.com) or Sail America (www.sailamerica.com).