Last Update: September 19th, 2018

Less than a month away from the Opening Ceremony for the 58th Genoa International Boat Show (from 20th to 25th September 2018) organised by UCINA, the Italian Marine Industry Association, the organising machine is working full-throttle, fully aware of Genoa’s expectations for the event, now more than ever.

The International Boat Show will, in fact, be the city’s first global showcase event, following the Morandi bridge tragedy, and first chance to welcome visitors and operators from across the world.


“Genoa will be able to count on the International Boat Show as a key testing ground – stated Carla Demaria, president of UCINA, during a recent interview – and will be able to show the world its beauty. There is no alternative. This will be the greatest Genoa International Boat Show to date”.

The importance of the International Boat Show

The Genoa International Boat Show is a unique event due to its singular features, which allow for the display of the latest in ship construction, motors, electronics, accessories, tourism and all forms of services, all within a single showcase, at sea and on shore, outdoors and indoors. This year there will be 948 exhibitors (+ 7,2% compared to 2017) and +46 boats on display in the water.
The inboard motor segment has recorded a +13% growth along with a boom in outboard reaching a staggering +23% in displays. Sails are recording an increase in the average size of the boats on display, accessories and components are experiencing a +16,8% leap.
The International Boat Show is a must-see event both for the global market but for sea enthusiasts as well and a world stage for institutional, technical and market-related dialogue for the entire industry, 365 days a year.

The economic context

Over the past few years, the event has evolved in line with the market’s transformations and the leisure boating industry has, for the third year running, confirmed a positive trend. A study carried out by UCINA’s Market Research Department regarding forecasts for 2018 shows that 69% of relevant companies are experiencing a growth in revenue based on their order portfolio. The domestic market continues to grow, driven by the leasing sector which recorded a +58% in the number of contracts stipulated in 2017. In the first 5 months of 2018, leasing’s value increased by 29% compared to the same period in the previous year. The global and European contexts are also experiencing an overall boom in the boating industry, a confirmation of the now solid positive trend.

The value of a specialised event

The growth of the market along with investments by UCINA, the Italian Marine Industry Association, confirm the International Boat Show as an international point of reference. For the 2018 edition, the identity of each individual segment has been developed in order to strengthen the specialist nature of the event. The layout will be that of four boat shows in one, each the result of an accurate study and dialogue with the exhibitors, with services tailored to each target segment in an attempt to allow each represented area to fully express its qualities.

The UCINA – ITA Plan 
In the spirit of the 2018 edition of the Genoa International Boat Show, ITA (the Italian Trade Agency) and UCINA, through the Extraordinary Made in Italy Promotion Plan launched by the Ministry for Economic Development, have organised an international press and operators tour.
As if to confirm the international importance of the event, there will be 73 journalists from the world’s leading newspapers and 87 foreign buyers from 27 countries.

The representation commitments also include the institutional presence of ITA and UCINA and promotion of the Genoa International Boat Show and the Italian industry’s companies at the leading boat shows across the globe, that take place throughout the year: starting in the United States, the world’s first market in number of those registered for leisure boating and for the amount of business generated by its industry, where UCINA and ITA will be taking part in the Ibex Show in Tampa (Florida) from 2nd to 4th October 2018, and at the Fort Lauderdale Boat Show scheduled to take place between 31st and 4th November.
Next will be Amsterdam’s METS Trade from 13th to 16th November where UCINA will organise, in partnership with ITA, the Italian national pavilion.
The globetrotting will continue into 2019 when the first event will be from 19th to 27th January at Düsseldorf’s Boot.

Conventions and events

Having always acted as a horizontal platform focussed on products, the Genoa International Boat Show has now taken on a certain verticality with regards to marine culture, education and the overall experience of those who love the sea. The six days from 20th to 25th September will be dedicated to institutional ForumUCINA conferences, workshops, events and award ceremonies, alongside the “Sea Experience” activities where visitors will get the chance to try out the latest in water sports or get involved in challenges and events organised for visitors’ entertainment.

The ForumUCINA conference programme, which will involve both the press and operators of the sector, will kick off Thursday 20th September with the opening conference “Global champions. Boating and the winning Country”. Following this, on the same day, will be the long-awaited presentation of the industry data published in La Nautica in Cifre during the conference entitled “Boating Economic Forecast”. Over the six days of the event, the most important current issues for the industry will be discussed, from tourism and ports to boating and tax, to technological innovation and environmental sustainability.

The International Boat Show, ambassador for the leading environmental sustainability projects 
The 58th Genoa International Boat Show is also at the forefront of safeguarding the sea and its vast biodiversity. Real action towards environmental sustainability, capable of inspiring the enthusiasm of all stakeholders and putting into practice acts and notions that are socially responsible: it is on this foundation that, for a number of years now, the International Boat Show organisers have initiated and maintained a series of positive practices in view of respecting the environment, with a particular focus on protecting the sea.
This commitment is also in view of achieving the ISO 20121 International Certificate – previously obtained by the 2012 London Olympics and Expo 2015. The ISO 20121 is the ruling that certifies an event as sustainable from an environmental, social and economic standpoint in all of its stages (conception, design, management and realisation).

Throughout the six days of the event, there will be a plethora of initiatives hosted by the Genoa International Boat Show focused on involving the general public and raising awareness about the issue of protecting and defending the sea. From environmental actions to 100% recyclable sails, all proposed ideas aim to involve every figure with ties to the sea and who is capable of potentially making a difference: institutions, enthusiasts, boating clubs, industry operators, volunteers, swimmers.

Among the initiatives, UCINA, the Italian Marine Industry Association is a patron of the One Ocean Foundation, a project conceived by the Costa Smeralda Yacht Club, who elected Mauro Pelaschier as the project’s ambassador. The former Azzurra helmsman is sailing around the Italian peninsula, stopping along the way to raise awareness of enthusiasts and the greater public about the microplastic problem in the seas around the world. Having set sail from Trieste on 29th last June, Pelaschier will arrive at Genoa on 21st September and will be welcomed by the International Boat Show. He will take part in a celebratory evening organised by the Italian Yacht Club, an UCINA partner.

An evening inspired by sport and charity

An evening inspired by sport and charity will be organised by the International Boat Show on Friday 21st September, in partnership with the Italian Yacht Club, the Mediterranean’s oldest sailing club. In a context of worldliness and show, the inaugural evening for the 58th Genoa International Boat Show will bring together sport, fashion, music and charity in the Porticciolo Duca degli Abruzzi.

The benefit evening in favour of the Giannina Gaslini Institute will be conducted by the television reporter Tessa Gelisio, who specialises in reports regarding the sea and the environment and has been the face of the International Boat Show evening for years. Tessa will be sharing the spotlight with key sports names including Federica Pellegrini and Luca Dotto and the sailor Mauro Pelaschier.
Adding to the parterre will be the magical voice of tenor Carlo Nicolini accompanied by the maestro Corrado Casati. Among the guests will be Valerio Massimo Manfredi, who will grace the audience with a short reading dedicated to the sea.

From sport to music, from literature to fashion. The latter will be represented by Chiara Boni who will be acting hostess of the evening. Even the guests, upon taking part in the solidarity event for Gaslini will receive a precious souvenir: a bracelet from the Sail-O Memorable Pieces collection.
Throughout the evening, UCINA will also be giving out awards to the companies that have constantly believed in the Genoa International Boat Show as a strategic tool for promoting the boating industry, by participating in 50 editions of the event.
The evening will end with a smokes and lights show on the water organised by the Italian Yacht Club.

The new VIP Lounge

The 58th Genoa International Boat Show will also have a new VIP Lounge, a format tailored to welcome national and international guests and increase networking and business opportunities, a space that is refined, yet informal, rich with events and artistic performances.
The programme, from breakfast to the evening aperitivo, will be dedicated to partners, shipyards and luxury brands, all made in Italy, from design to fashion to green design, with live performances and services provided by the companies. Partners of the VIP Lounge: Circle Dynamic Luxury Magazine, Marchesi Antinori, Gaggenau, Cortese – Premium Soft Drink, Fondazione Lucia Matalon, Omlog, Giorgetti, Sandrini, Vesoi.

Sponsors and partners

This year’s edition of the Genoa Boat Show will boast a prestigious line-up of partners: Bentley will be the official car for the 58th International Boat Show and Breitling will be the event’s official watch. Main sponsors will be Fastweb and Samsung, and other sponsors include Afex, Banca Carige, Tenuta San Pietro, VisionOttica. Technical partners: Eataly, Compagnia dei Caraibi, Sail-O. Sponsors and partners share the vision and project of the 58th International Boat Show and play an active role throughout the event by offering services dedicated to exhibitors and visitors alike.

The 2017 edition saw 884 brands displayed, 1,100 boats exhibited on land and sea and 148,228 visitors, a 16.5% increase compared to 2016.

Salone Nautico di Genova
Genoa and the Boat Show, a story of passion.
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About the author


Norberto Moreau is co-founder of the Allied Management Ltd Consulting Group (Hong Kong, United Kingdom, Spain). The group and his associates have activities in Yachting, Properties, Events and Online Services.
Activity with own Projects (70%) / Consulting (30%). Norberto Moreau is available for Consulting worldwide at Fairs, Regattas etc.

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