Dec 11, 2018

METS TradeThere are a select number of exhibitions and trade shows around the world that take on a life of their own, becoming essential global gathering points for all professionals in their sector. As one of this elite group, the METSTRADE Show transforms the Dutch capital into the world’s central hub for the leisure marine industry for a week in mid-November each year. Even by its own high standards, however, the 31st edition offered an exceptional amount of business and networking opportunities and social gatherings. A uniquely convivial atmosphere made METSTRADE 2018 an experience to remember for all who came to Amsterdam.

“METSTRADE 2018 was especially vibrant as it deployed a tried and tested concept against a background of a thriving leisure marine industry,” says Irene Dros, Maritime Director at RAI Amsterdam. “Exhibitors, visitors and show partners were all pleased with how productive and friendly the event was and the genuine sense of community it provided. As organizers, we were delighted with the response to the new initiatives set up to keep the show fresh. The overall air of enthusiasm was further reflected in the unprecedented number of over 1100 companies who have already booked to ensure themselves a place at METSTRADE 2019.”

The right visitors:
The record number of exhibitors who filled the RAI convention centre were especially satisfied with the diversity of the people they received. An analysis of the show statistics confirms the impression of an event that continues to grow in stature year on year. For the first time this year, METSTRADE welcomed a large group of trade counsellors, representing embassies from 37 different countries.

This year saw a considerable increase in the number of visitors from the USA (13% rise on 2017), Italy (8%) and Denmark (5%), as well as those from key upcoming countries in the marine sector, including the UAE (+9%) and Russia (15%). A five-percent rise in visitors from the Netherlands was especially welcome, as they mainly represented large companies.

The number of country pavilions grew this year to 19, with Denmark being a newcomer. The mood in these national hubs within the show is captured well by Julie Balzano, Sr. Director Export Development with the US National Marine Manufacturers Association. “This was a great show and the quality of the buyers was felt among our exhibiting members. The USA Pavilion will be back again in 2019 because METSTRADE has become a must-attend event for NMMA members.”

Across the generations:
Another noticeable feature at METSTRADE 2018 was the way in which the younger generation seems to be embracing the show, mirroring their greater involvement in the industry as a whole. Many new faces were spotted in the busy METSTRADE Young Professionals Club lounge and YPC events were exceptionally well attended.

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