The growth in paddlecraft use means there’s an opportunity to engage with an emerging, and quickly growing market segment.
If you spend much time at all around the water you’ve likely noticed an increase in the popularity of human powered watercraft – these include row boats, paddle boats, pedal boats, canoes, kayaks, surf skis, standup paddleboards, rowing shells or anything else that is propelled by human power.
Sales for standup paddleboards (SUP) have increased dramatically since 2007 when they were first introduced in the United States. Last year SUP sales were estimated at $15.6 million. Rowing clubs are springing up in cities everywhere that have access to an appropriate body of water and schools across the U.S. are experiencing a dramatic increase in participation in rowing programs. Kayak manufacturers are also reporting a steady rise in sales. Kayaking appeals to a board range of individuals including fishers and divers and is quickly becoming a mainstream recreational activity.
One of the business strategies of a successful marina operator is that they look for and find opportunities where others see nothing. By approaching the design and operation of their facility with an eye for solutions that capitalize on site-specific features and have long term financial viability they are able to identify opportunities that generate financial profit and wealth.
As many marinas would attest, fees from slip rentals alone are rarely enough to keep a marina afloat (no pun intended). The business typically needs an additional source(s) of revenue. The challenge for the owner or operator is to identify what those sources are.
In an effort to survive a tough economy and build a financially sustainable business marinas are getting creative. A marina in Washington State provides us with a good example of what one marina has done to help build their profitability.