Dubai’s Luxury Market and the Dubai International Boat Show

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Dubai International Boat Show 2019
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Economic development expert Richie Santosdiaz takes a look at high-level of the luxury market in the region and specifically the 27th edition of the Dubai International Boat Show

The world’s 100 largest luxury goods companies generated sales of $217 billion in 2016, with the average luxury goods annual sales for a top 100 company around $2.2 billion, according to the report by Deloitte, examining and listing the 100 largest luxury goods companies globally.

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The report also states that one of the main challenges to growth in the luxury industry in the Middle East is to keep shoppers who could purchase luxury goods in other countries. As the Middle East region hosts one of the largest youth populations in the world, which amongst them is more affluent than the rest of the world with their willingness to buy being higher.

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The global yacht industry is expected to reach $74.2bn by 2022. In terms of the luxury marine sector, the UAE is in 9th place for superyachts in production in 2018, with 14 new builds with a combined length of 611 meters being made there.

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In 2016 there were around 4,500 superyachts in the world, with around a quarter available for charter. At the same time, with over 200,000 Ultra High Net Worth (UHNW) households, there is an opportunity for the industry to witness huge growth in the future by persuading more wealthy individuals to part with their cash and pay into the yachting lifestyle.

According to the press release, Dubai International Boat Show is underway – welcoming no fewer than 450 yachts and boats from around the world to the Dubai Canal.

Ranging from fishing boats and small leisure-craft, to 50-metre (164ft) superyachts complete with their own private waterfalls, sun-deck hot tubs and cigar rooms, plus a host of thrilling sea-toys, the Dubai International Boat Show will be home to all things “chic nautique,” and will once again be the Middle East’s premiere showcase of everything sea-based.

Running February 26th through March 2nd, the 27th edition of the annual show will have Dh1.5billion worth of boats for sale, thrilling live jet-ski, sailing and fishing competitions, diving displays, expert-led sea-based conversation, and a host of fun have-a-go sessions.

It will host a combined 38 global and regional launches, will welcome more than 800 different companies and brands from 50 countries, and be buzzing with live shows, land and sea fun for all the family, and unrivaled glitz and glamour.

The global recreational boating market is experiencing an upswing, with growing interest in leisure activities such as fishing, sailing, and watersports guiding the boating industry to a projected worth of $74.7 billion by 2022. In the UAE alone, the industry was valued at approximately $1.3bn to $1.5bn last year. This demand, coupled with rising popularity of marine and coastal tourism activities, relaxed maritime regulations and a 50 per cent increase in local berths – a number which is set to grow by a further 1,400 with the 2020 opening of the new Meraas-developed Dubai Harbour – has seen a sizeable swell in the UAE’s recreational boating market, now home to more than 10,000 registered small-to-midsized boats, and a considerable share of the Middle East’s 216 40-metre-plus superyachts.

The region as a whole is investing heavily in its maritime offering, with the UAE accounting for 35 percent of that total investment. In conjunction with rising tourist numbers, the country is well positioned to continue to develop into one of the world’s most sought-after luxury marine locales.

One of the participants is Italy. Gianpaolo Bruno, Italian Trade Commissioner to the UAE, Oman, and Pakistan said, “In 2018, Italy exported Euro 34 million worth of superyachts, boats, motorboats, ships, rowing boats and canoes to the UAE, making it the largest exporter of marine products to the UAE. This is an increase of over 111 percent compared to 2017, when Italy exported around Euro 16 million worth of marine products to the UAE and shows how the industry in the Emirates is flourishing.”

“In 2018, the UAE’s marine industry was valued at around Euro 58 billion (USD 66 billion), with the leisure boating sector making up around Euro 1.3 billion (USD 1.5 billion) of this figure. The UAE boating sector is still an emerging market and it can offer great business opportunities to Italian companies who excel in design and technology, whilst offering high-quality products and services at competitive prices.”

Dubai International Boat Show plays a critical role in creating and sustaining this market for superyachts and boats of all sizes and budgets across the region.

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