The Marina Industries Association (MIA) of Australia has released more figures from its annual Club Marine 2015 Health of the Australian Marina Industry Survey.

The latest findings show that just over 23,000 people were employed at Australian marinas in 2015 – a significant increase compared to the 19,000 people employed in the industry when the last survey was conducted in 2013.

The strong growth is mostly down to contractors working at marinas – up from 7,171 in 2013 to 11,403. According to the survey's findings, employment by marina owners and marina tenants dropped slightly. However, in a positive sign of the economic health of marinas, there has been a 5% increase in marina gross revenues and a 22% increase in average marina staff payrolls from A$42,000 to A$52,000.

The survey also shows that larger marinas are growing more strongly than smaller ones. The majority of marinas with over 100 boat storage spaces have experienced growth in gross revenues since 2013/14 and only 10% have experienced a decline.

For marinas with less than 100 boat spaces, 37% had growth in gross revenues and 18% experienced a decline. Approximately 60% of larger marinas expect this current financial year to result in increased gross revenue with only 2% expecting a decline.

For the smaller marinas the percentages are 46% and 8%.

“The survey indicates that across a range of financial measures the Australian marina industry is in good shape,” says MIA executive officer Colin Bransgrove.

“There are, however, regional variations as indicated for example by projected changes in 2015/16 marina employment. Queensland and Tasmania marinas are the most positive about growing employment with 28% and 23% projecting increased employment. No marinas responding to the survey from these two states indicated any projected drop in employment.”

The Club Marine 2015 Health of the Australian Marina Industry Survey builds on previous survey data released in 2009, 2011 and 2013. The collaborative research is a result of a long-term research partnership between the Recreational Marine Research Centre (RMRC) at Michigan State University in the US and the MIA, with extensive data and analysis based on a 40% sample of Australia’s 346 marinas.