Industry benefits from foreign interest

The British Marine Federation (BMF) is celebrating yet another successful journalist mission. The BMF welcomed 20 journalists on 9-13 June to the South Coast for an insightful five-day tour of UK marine companies.

The Mission began at Cowes Yacht Haven and continued on to Portland Harbour. The journalists benefited from the opportunity to test boats and equipment, and were also invited to a number of product showcases. Over 50 UK companies participated in the event, demonstrating their products to the group.

Delegates attending the event included a diverse selection of journalists from 13 countries; from emerging markets such as China, Russia and Brazil, to established marine bases such as France, Spain, Croatia and Turkey. The BMF is expecting a record amount of press coverage in key overseas trade publications following the event.

Amanda Simpson, International Executive at the BMF, was delighted with the event: “We have enjoyed a fantastic week on the South Coast. Our guests have been provided with an excellent setting to explore numerous boat yards, test various boats and view other products. We hope that their resulting press coverage will highlight the success of the UK marine industry and its many opportunities.

“Our aim was to increase awareness of the UK marine industry’s capabilities and technological innovation, as well as build relationships with an international press audience, which we are confident we have successfully achieved “.

Sébastien Mainguet, of Voile Magazine in France said on the Mission: “It was great to visit Cowes as well as Weymouth as they are both very different venues. Weymouth and Portland will be an excellent sailing venue for the 2012 Olympic games. I was also excited to see Laser on site at Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy. I was most impressed with the sailing boats and plan to reflect this in my coverage.”

Artur Grokhovski, from Power and Sail Boats magazine, Russia commented: “The whole event has been extremely interesting and will prove very useful for the future. We have seen a vast array of different boats and products which will be well appreciated in the Russian market. I hope the other journalists support the Mission with good and valuable coverage, as I will.”

Janet Chen, of China Boating magazine added: “I have enjoyed my trip to the UK immensely and found the boat testing and shipyard visits very interesting. China is a young market and although we still have much to learn, working with the BMF and other UK companies will fast track our progress considerably.”

The event has proved popular with both journalists and participants alike. Paul Gullett, of Wave International, who took part in the showcase said: “This event has reaffirmed our product with an international audience. The event is a great format and an inexpensive way of showcasing our product to the world’s marine press”.