£7m a year injected into local economy

Sir Robin Knox-Johnston was a keynote speaker at the MAA press lunch Sir Robin Knox-Johnston was a keynote speaker at the MAA press lunch
Industry Database

More than 130 marine journalists and industry representatives attended the eighth annual MAA press lunch held at Haslar Marina.

Keynote speakers included Sir Robin Knox-Johnston (Clipper Ventures), Leslie Ryan (SailGP) and Matt Sheahan (TV producer and freelance journalist).

Matt spoke about breakthroughs in technology that are having repercussions down the line. “New technology is allowing sailors to do things that weren’t possible before,” he said, commenting how the foiling technology used in the SailGP series could filter down to leisure sailors.

Sail GP has visited Sydney, San Francisco and New York with Cowes next on the agenda in August.

£7m a year

Sir Robin Knox-Johnston reflected on the past 16 years of Clipper Ventures being located in Gosport and the affect it’s had on the region.

The company employees 70 people and injects an estimated £7m a year into the economy. “We’ve trained 5,000 people to do the race,” he said. “40% have never been on a boat before but they stay in the sport. They take it up. They’re enthusiastic.

“It’s our job to cash in on that enthusiasm and teach them to become good seamen.”

The event is organised in conjunction with Dean & Reddyhoff owners of Haslar Marina.

“This is one of my favourite events in MAA’s calendar. There’s such a buzz in the marquee as people catch-up on old friendships and forge new ones,” Mike Shepherd, MAA director added. “As an agency we’re delighted to be at the forefront of the marine industry, creating opportunities for our clients and working closely with the press.”

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