With the Palma Superyacht Show 2018 having come to a close last week, the sixth edition was proof of just how far the event has developed in its short history. While the show started out as predominantly a charter and brokerage show for sailing yachts, more motoryachts and a wider range of superyachts exhibit every year, attracting an increasing variety of potential clients and brokers. The show has also established a strong business-to-business element, particularly for the refit sector.

The new 72m floating bridge this year meant an extended show and an enhanced viewing experience for visitors. For the second time, the show also featured a specific refit and repair area, dedicated to experts and professionals within the refit and repair sector. This year, the area was expanded and relocated to a more prominent position within the show, which promised more footfall from industry experts and professionals.

Palma-based Horizon Marine Electronics, which was situated in this area, had a very productive 2018 show according to Operations Manager Steve Worrall. “This year’s location of the refit and repair area was a significant improvement and with the floating bridge, more visitors were able to pass via our stands and as a result, we have already confirmed the same stands for next year.” 

The IPM Group took advantage of the show to congregate the managers of each of its facilities and exchange ideas, as well as meet and greet clients. IPM's STP Shipyard Palma also presented the imminent arrival of a new 1000-tonne travel lift, which will be operational at the end of September and will be a significant addition to the local refit infrastructure.

“This has been an especially successful edition due to the innovations that have been introduced at the show, such as the refit and repair area and the bridge that has joined the two exhibition areas,” says José María Campuzano, CEO of the IPM Group. “The IPM Group can affirm that this success has also been reflected in its presence at the show, since the results have been especially good.”

For the local brokerage community, the show continues to play an important role in developing the market and giving brokers another platform to exhibit and sell the yachting experience to potential clients. “The show has exceeded our expectations in terms of how big it has become; we even had to extend it this year,” explains Marc Händle, senior broker at Ocean Independence Palma.

“Prospective clients like it because they can view yachts in a relaxed and enjoyable environment, and the yacht owners like it because we have kept the show has economical as possible for presenting their boats. Of course, the brokers use it as a tool to help sell, but the aim has always been for the show to work primarily for the clients.”

This feedback is echoed by many visitors, brokers and exhibitors each year: the Palma Superyacht Show stands out from other shows in the superyacht industry's calendar because of its laidback atmosphere, appealing location, and non-commercial driving force. The number of sailing yachts versus motoryachts is continuing to balance, establishing the event as the largest show for sailing superyachts, as well as providing a strong motoryacht element within the 30 to 60m size range.

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