The 2016 edition of the Palma Superyacht Show has come to a close and, regardless of a wet and windy start to the event, it has continued to carve a niche as the largest gathering of sailing yachts for sale and charter and consolidate its position as the must-attend Spring brokerage show.
“Palma Superyacht Show 2016 is larger than ever,” says Will Bishop, YPI’s senior sailing yacht broker. “A vast array of sailing yachts are on display, from out and out performance to the most comfortable cruising yachts on the market.”
One of the main aims for the organisers this year was to attract a greater number of quality visitors and discerning clients to the show. This was certainly achieved as, not only were heads of shipyards and top industry CEOs in attendance, but there were more international and genuine clients walking the show.
Hank Halsted, sales broker at Northrop and Johnson, advised many of his clients to attend the show as a valuable exercise to survey the market in their sector. “Palma is the centre of the universe for sailing yachts and nowhere else do you find a show with sailing yachts as the majority,” he explains.
“The Palma show started out as a local brokerage show that was very much business-to-business, but it has now transformed into an all-encompassing show, attracting clients from all over.”
"I feel the show continues to grow from year to year, in volume of visitors, number of genuine buyers, and number of offers received," concurs Toby Walker, director of Stockbridge Yacht Brokers. "This year Stockbridge welcomed a good number of clients aboard our yacht on display, and we are entering into sales negotiations as a result. Palma is definitely becoming to 'go-to' show if you want to buy a yacht ready to enjoy this summer."
Unlike more commercially driven shows, the Palma Superyacht Show has historically been praised for upholding a non-corporate feel and providing exhibitors and brokerage houses with a value-for-money marketing platform – some would say a rarity in the superyacht industry.
Furthermore, it is undeniable that the show benefits from its thriving location, as Palma becomes an evermore popular superyacht hub. Recognising the increasing relevance of Palma to its fleet, Fraser Yachts used the show as an opportunity to announce and celebrate the opening of their new yacht management division in their Palma office.
Speaking about the decision, Harald Van Exem, Fraser’s yacht management services director, explained it was the next logical step. “Many of our yachts are based in Palma throughout the year and others have regular refit work done there or in Barcelona during the winter,” he comments. “We wanted to have people based locally to allow us to work with our clients more closely and efficiently.”
In terms of future growth, potential for expansion is quite complicated due to logistical and spacial arrangements, but the organisers confirm that they are studying all options to try and accommodate demand. For now, however, there are already exhibitor waiting lists in place for next year, so it looks like the success of the Palma Superyacht Show is set to continue.