by Kate Duryea
Australian marine companies reported sales and exciting opportunities in the United Arab Emirates market on Saturday, the closing day of the Dubai International Boat Show.
A group of 31 Australian marine exporters with peak industry group AIMEX (the Australian International Marine Export Group) attended the Show from March 11-15, 2008 at Mina Seyhai in Dubai.
AIMEX Chief Executive Mary Anne Edwards said all companies at the Australia pavilion reported direct sales and good leads.
Bellingham Marine Australia’s John Spragg reported continued growth in the UAE market and is expecting to generate $200,000 to $300,000 this year. The Bellingham brand is well established in Dubai under licence to Septec.
Superior Jetties received orders of more than $A120,000 in the first two days of the Show.
'Australian companies noted that a key factor for success was the acceptance of the Australian brand by the UAE nationals,' said AIMEX’s Mary Anne Edwards.
'They like doing business with Australian companies and appear to feel at ease with the Australian style of doing business. ' There was widespread and specific interest in the Gold Coast region and Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show.
Companies noted the advantage of attending a trade mission early March before the Show, funded by the Victorian Government.
'The participants spent three days ahead of the Show, visiting key marine projects in Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Ras Al Khaimah with market briefings by Knotika Marine, ' said Ms Edwards. 'This experience proved an asset to those companies as they understood more about their customers and regional issues.'
In other comments, Seahawk Australia’s Ben Hawke said the timing was impeccable to establish a presence in the market while materials company, Multipanel, again won orders from the Show.
Steve Vincent from Austral Propellers and VEEM Propellers said the market potential was excellent.
'The Austral brand is well known in the global arena and this credibility, built over 60 years, has proven advantageous. The VEEM product again attracted interest in its cutting edge propeller technology.'
The Australian group received regional support with Austrade Commercial Consul in Dubai, James Wyndham at the show daily plus government representatives from Western Australia, Queensland and the Victorian government supporting businesses from their respective Australian states.
Ms Edwards said numerous Australian companies now use agents and distributors in the region such as Al Masood, a trading company based in Abu Dhabi.
'AIMEX members such as Aqualuma, Acoola Marine and Fixtech on the Al Masood stand commented their technical expertise was enhanced by the trading company’s market knowledge, administration and business relationship support. They noted this was critical to achieve increased market share in UAE,' she said.
Australian companies attending Dubai International Boat Show were: Acoola Marine, Aqualuma Underwater Lighting, Ark Corporation Pty Ltd, Austral Propellers and VEEM Propellers, Bellingham Marine Australia, Central Coast Marine Installation, Club Marine Mandurah Boat Show, Dynamic Products, Evrsafe Marine Technologies Pty Ltd, Fixtech, Gold Coast City Council, GME, Gravity International Pty Ltd, Kinetic Technology International Pty Ltd, Maritimo, Multipanel, Mustang Marine, Patriot Marine, Poly Flex Group Ltd, PowerDive, Pyrotek Soundguard Pty Ltd, Riviera Marine (Int) Pty Ltd, Ronstan International, Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show, Seahawk Australia Pty Ltd, Sealite Pty Ltd, Stebercraft Pty Ltd, Sunrunner Cruisers Pty Ltd, Superior Jetties and media magazines Boating Business and Ocean Magazine.
Ms Edwards said the opportunities in the UAE market continue to grow and there is now real interest in Kuwait which now has established a boat show to encourage marine manufacturers to the area.
'AIMEX will be reviewing the opportunities for members in this market with a view to take a presence at this Show next year.'
For further information view www.aimex.asn.au