Speculation over a pending venue change for the International BoatBuilders’ Exhibition and Conference (IBEX) has been quashed with an announcement by the event organisers that North America’s largest marine trade show will remain in its current venue at the Tampa Convention Center for at least three more years.
Jointly owned and operated by the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) and RAI Amsterdam, IBEX had become the subject of industry speculation suggesting a change in venue could be in the works in order to minimise the potential for future weather-related disruptions.
The show was nearly cancelled last year following a close brush with Hurricane Irma, while Hurricane Matthew threatened to curtail the 2016 event. Yet in spite of those recent near misses, the show has signed a three-year contract with the Tampa Convention Center which will see IBEX hosted there from October 2-4, 2018, from October 1-3, 2019, and from September 29 to October 1, 2020, respectively.
“Tampa has proven to be an ideal location for IBEX since we relocated there in 2014,” says IBEX show director Anne Dunbar. “The waterfront location and easy access to the dock space at the Tampa Convention Center, combined with the close proximity of restaurants and hotels, make Tampa a perfect convention city for the marine industry.”
In spite of opening only a week after Hurricane Irma passed through the region, the 2017 IBEX attracted more than 6,500 marine industry professionals from more than 50 countries, and saw more than 600 companies fill more than 123,000sq ft of exhibition space over three levels of the Tampa Convention Center.
To register for IBEX 2018, click here.