With less than three weeks to go before the 2017 METSTRADE Show opens for business, event organiser Amsterdam RAI has confirmed that 1,526 exhibitors have confirmed their presence at this year’s event – a figure which has already surpassed last year’s record high of 1,471. These include 290 yards and equipment supply companies represented in the SuperYacht Pavilion, 69 exhibitors in the Marina & Yard Pavilion and 49 in the Construction Material Pavilion.

The three-day show, which is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year, runs from November 14-16 at the Amstersdam RAI convention centre and is expected to attract more than 15,500 unique visitors.

“This continued growth across the board at METSTRADE is a testimony to the strength of the brand and the excellent return on investment it offers participants,” says RAI Amsterdam’s Maritime Director Irene Dros. “The event’s ability to remain at the forefront of innovation is one of the reasons why we continue to attract new entries, with no less than 237 companies exhibiting at the METSTRADE Show for the first time this year.

“These include debuts for Enersys and Throwraft on the main exhibition floor, SEARTEX and Heol Composites in the Construction Material Pavilion, Jetties and Superior Orsta in the Marina & Yard Pavilion, and DIAB Design and Viking in the SuperYacht Pavilion,” she adds. “Moreover, it is wonderful to see that 32 companies will be attending the 2017 show who were with us from the very beginning in 1988, including Hella Marine and ASA Boat Electro. There can be no better illustration of enduring value than that.”

Another proven strength of the METSTRADE formula is how the evolution of the three shows-within-a-show over the past decade has not dented the attraction of the country pavilions – areas of the exhibition floor which allow exhibitors from the same nation to gather together if desired. There are currently 19 of these pavilions, which are organised by RAI Amsterdam in association with ICOMIA (the International Council of Marine Industry Associations).

A fine example of how these national meeting points take on a life of their own has been seen with the growth of the Slovenian pavilion, which started in in 2013 with seven companies covering 92sq m of floor space and this year will feature 20 firms across 252sq m.

METSTRADE revolves around both business and the sharing of know-how and expertise. The extensive informative programme at this year’s show includes a new E-nnovationLAB, which will run in parallel with the existing I-nnovationLAB and Material Xperience On Tour showcases. The E-nnovationLAB will feature technologies and manufacturers of electric & hybrid marine propulsion systems and components for the leisure marine industry, adding to METSTRADE’s focus on sustainability.

The successful introduction last year of the Construction in Progress Stage (offering live presentations of how materials in the Construction Material Pavilion are made) will be rewarded with an additional event on the second day of the show. This round table discussion on boat construction and recycling techniques will feature a premium line-up of speakers and participants from a wide range of countries and disciplines.

A third new feature of note at METSTRADE 2017 will be a pilot for the Pitch and Match matchmaking tool, designed to help companies get even more out of the show and find business relations of direct interest. Available free of charge for boat/yacht builders, marina professionals and all METSTRADE exhibitors, Pitch and Match should facilitate even more productive connections during the three days the show is open in Amsterdam.

The I-nnovationLAB is the central stage for all innovation at the show, where the products nominated for the DAME Design Award and shortlisted projects for the Boat Builder Awards will be on display. The actual winner of the DAME, which will be revealed at the opening Breakfast Briefing ceremony on the morning of 14 November, will make a presentation pitch in the I-nnovationLAB. There will also be speakers from various organisations such as IBI, Materia and ICOMIA, plus a range of sessions related to the issue of sustainability.

There is still time for leisure marine professionals to register for METSTRADE 2017. Registration is free until 6 November after which the cost is €70.

For more information, the full METSTRADE programme and the digital catalogue featuring all the exhibitors and events are available on metstrade.com. The METSTRADE app can be downloaded in the app store.