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The global exhibition and conference attracted almost 11,000 attendees

Cruise Shipping Miami 2011 closed oina positive note

The 27th annual Cruise Shipping Miami Convention closed Thursday, March 17, with participants – cruise line representatives and more than 979 exhibiting companies – saying it was one of the most productive gatherings to date. The global exhibition and conference attracted almost 11,000 attendees between Monday and Thursday, March 14-17.

This year UBM Live, the event organizers, reported a 1 percent increase in attendance at the world’s largest annual cruise industry conference and exhibition, compared to 2010.

The tone of the four days of conference and trade show sessions was upbeat, with the conference theme of the cruise industry’s resiliency emerging during the opening plenary session and continuing through panel discussions on such topics as Europe, luxury cruising, the next hot source markets and the future of cruising in Mexico and Asia.

Michael Kazakoff, vice president of UBM Live, noted that exhibitors in all sectors of the exhibition reported high-quality traffic throughout all three days of the trade show with a number of significant deals and contracts signed during the week with cruise line buyers. Even what are sometimes called the "small guys" – exhibitors on 100-square-foot stands – were very pleased with the deals done, discussions and potential for future business, said Kazakoff.

The week began with the second annual CSM Charity Motorcycle Ride, with more than 50 riders from around the world giving up their Sunday to raise awareness and money for Seafarers House in Fort Lauderdale. The ride raised $4,350 for Seafarer’s House, which serves crewmembers on cruise and cargo ships calling at Port Everglades.

CSM 2011 concluded Thursday night with the star-packed FCCA Gala of senior cruise line executives and key suppliers. The Gala, which supports FCCA’s Foundation for the Caribbean raises money for a number of significant charitable causes in the Caribbean and Central America.

The 28th annual Cruise Shipping Miami Convention is scheduled for March 12-15, 2012, at the Miami Beach Convention Center.