Boating Industry

February 2017

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Page 5 of 51 6 | Boating Industry | February 2017 AT THE HELM JONATHAN SWEET Boating Industry EDITOR-IN-CHIEF: Jonathan Sweet ( SENIOR EDITOR: Liz Keener ( MANAGING EDITOR: Brianna Liestman ( ASSOCIATE DIGITAL PRODUCTION EDITOR: Shauna Spencer ( MANAGING ART DIRECTOR: Dodi Vessels PRODUCTION ARTIST: Kelsey Houle ( PRODUCTION MANAGER: Angela Schmieg PRODUCTION DIRECTOR: Cherri Perschmann NATIONAL SALES DIRECTOR: Kathy Johnson 763-383-4409 ( SENIOR ACCOUNT MANAGER, EAST: Chris Pelikan 763-383-4408 ( CEO: Marion Minor SR. VICE PRESIDENT/FINANCE & OPERATIONS: Gerald Winkel SR. VICE PRESIDENT/MARKET DEVELOPMENT: Joanne Juda-Prainito VICE PRESIDENT/MARINE, POWERSPORTS, BEVERAGE: Amy Collins SALES OPERATIONS MANAGER: Bernadette Wohlman BOATING INDUSTRY (ISSN #1543-4400) is published monthly; except combined June/July, August/September and October/November – by EPG Media & Specialty Information, 10405 6th Ave. N., Minneapolis, MN 55441. Periodicals postage paid at St. Paul, MN and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Boating Industry, P.O. Box 2123, Skokie, IL 60076-7823. SUBSCRIPTION INFORMATION: Free to qualified members of the boating industry. Annual subscription rate is $99 per year for U.S., Mexican and Canadian residents and $149 for residents in other countries. All paid subscriptions must be paid in advance and in U.S. funds only. CUSTOMER SERVICE: Visit, call (847) 513-6025, email or write to Boating Industry, P.O. Box 2123, Skokie, IL 60076-7823. EDITORIAL: All manuscripts, materials, photographs and artwork submitted are at mailer's risk and must include self-addressed envelope with sufficient postage for return. No responsibility will be assumed for unsolicited materials. Boating Industry is a registered trademark of EPG Media & Specialty Information. © 2017 by EPG Media & Specialty Information. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or part is prohibited unless expressly authorized by publisher. For more information on e-prints or reprints from Boating Industry, contact Bernadette Wohlman, (763) 383-4400 x4464 Printed in U.S.A. Member of Awards IF NOTHING ELSE, 2016 was interesting. It seemed to be a year of turmoil, from social upheaval to an election season that left the nation divided. 2017 promises more of the same. Change is the new normal and how we adapt to it is the difference between success and failure. Business is changing, society is changing, the political world is certainly changing. Elsewhere in this issue (p. 34) we talk about the changing marina industry. With big players like Safe Harbor and Suntex rapidly acquiring properties, the marina market is going to look very different in 2017 and 2018. Small players will face increased chal- lenges as they compete against these super-sized operations. But just as small dealers and manufacturers have had to learn to survive and thrive against the likes of MarineMax and Brunswick Corp., the smart ones will find ways to succeed. We don't know what challenges and opportunities – and there will be both – a Trump administration and Republican Congress will bring to the boating industry, but one thing we do know is that it will be very different. We can probably expect fewer regulations and a generally more business-friendly environment. At the same time, on trade and environ- mental protections, there are likely to be disagreements. Finally, and most importantly, the demographics of the country are changing. This issue gets plenty of coverage in our 2017 industry outlook starting on p. 28. We also partnered with the Recreational Boating Leadership Council's New Markets Task Force on a webinar in January on the topic. You can find more from that webinar at As NMMA President Thom Dammrich points out in the outlook article, the coming Millennial generation is the most diverse in history. Reaching a more diverse buyer base of women, Hispanics, African-Americans, Asians, the LGBT community, whatever it may be, is not about being politically correct. It's not about advancing a liberal agenda or doing the nice thing. It's about not being an idiot and investing in the future of your business. Whether you like it or not, we live in a world of constant change. You can whine and complain about it or you can grab the opportunity that 2017 presents. * * * Speaking of grabbing your 2017 opportunity, a great way to get the recognition you deserve is to apply for the 2017 Top 100. The online application is now available at Applications are due June 27, but it's a good time to get started and get it out of the way before busy season. Grab the 2017 opportunity

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