Boot Dusseldorf in it for the WIN: 50 years and charging hard

Fiona Wylde boot Dusseldorf wave pool
Firing on all pistons at boot Dusseldorf 2019. Photo by: Andy Klotz
Global Partner

At its 50th anniversary, boot 2019 – the world’s largest and leading international water sports trade fair – held in Düsseldorf, Germany, set new records. Almost 2,000 exhibitors from 73 countries presented products on over 2.3 million square feet of exhibit space to approximately 250,000 water sports enthusiasts (boot 2018: 247,000 visitors) from more than 100 nations.

Boot Dusseldorf delivers!

Whew!  These results confirm boot’s position as the leading event for this sector worldwide. In addition to visitors from Germany, the majority of attendees came from the Netherlands, Belgium, Great Britain, Switzerland and Italy.

Boot Director Petros Michelidakis stated: “The exhibitors reported great business and many new contacts from all over the globe. boot is clearly a first-class business platform. The wide range of international travel destinations in the Travel World also attracted many visitors.”

Boot Dusseldorf City Wave wakeboard Chris Lenhert
Wakeboarding on the City Wave brought the crowds to the water park. Photo by: Chris Lenhert

Watersports Industry “extremely optimistic”

Good business and excellent contacts for water sports fans and trade visitors from all over the world characterized boot 2019. “I have experienced numerous events here in Düsseldorf, but this boot was unique. Great atmosphere in the halls, people in vacation mood at the stands and highly satisfied exhibitors. Which means that we definitely reached our objective.  This marvelous anniversary of boot will be remembered by all,” commented Werner M. Dornscheidt, President & CEO of Messe Düsseldorf.

Jürgen Tracht, Managing Director of the Association of the German Water Sports Industry (BVWW), added: “The industry is extremely optimistic about the upcoming water sports season. I expect boot 2019 to act as a stimulant and driving force for all areas of the water sports industry. Our member companies were enthusiastic about the high internationality and quality of the visitors.”

Boot Dusseldorf wave pool
The wave pool competitions and exhibitions drew crowds to the ancillary sports to the boat show. Photo by: Andy Klotz

According to Jürgen Tracht, for both motor boats and sailing yachts, the trend is towards larger boats over 39 feet long as well as agile smaller boats. Multihull boats are also in great demand, a trend that was very obvious at the trade show. boot 2019 had no difficulty being an event not just for B2B visitors from the industry but also for the presentation of trend sports for the public, like stand up paddling.

Boot Dusseldorf wave pool girls
Fiona Wylde and crew Wow-ed the crowds at the City Wave for boot 2019. Photo by: Andy Klotz

Trends within the Industry

Decision-makers from major chartering companies, for example, use the trade fair to obtain a comprehensive insight into the market, to establish direct contact with the manufacturers and to make comparisons. This directionality is increasing because chartering is becoming more and more popular with boot visitors and is a real trend within the watersports industry. With 1,500 sailing yachts and motor boats at the exhibitors’ stands, the offer for charter enthusiasts was huge.

There was a further increase in the recreational diving and trend sport exhibits at boot 2019 which were major visitor attractions. About 100,000 surfing enthusiasts watched the sensational surfing demonstrations on “THE WAVE”, an indoor pool generating a standing wave for athletes to ride. Numerous board suppliers reported visitors are rediscovering the thrill of surfing. Stand up paddling, windsurfing, surfing and wakeboarding as well as the contest on “THE WAVE” and in the “Flatwaterpool” inspired all attendees.

Fiona Wylde boot Dusseldorf wave pool
Firing on all pistons at boot Dusseldorf 2019. Photo by: Andy Klotz

Event of the Year:  Boot Dusseldorf 2019

The atmosphere in the Dive Center and the entire diving hall was excellent from the first day forward. Especially popular with new and young visitors alike was the trial dive. boot Director Petros Michelidakis says, “For the diving community, boot is the event of the year. This is where diving trips are planned, diving partners found and the latest equipment tested.

The next staging of boot will take place from January 18 – 26, 2020 in Düsseldorf, Germany. For further information on visiting or exhibiting at boot 2020, contact Messe Düsseldorf North America, 150 North Michigan Avenue, Suite 2920, Chicago, IL 60601. Telephone: (312) 781-5180; Fax: (312) 781-5188; E-mail:; Visit

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Evelyn O'Doherty, editor & publisher of the new Standup Journal 2.0 is a former school teacher gone rogue. She left her career as a teacher in order to spend more time near or on the water after learning to surf turned her life around (upsidedown?). She is a year-round surfer and paddler living on the eastern tip of Long Island in NY who is a certified SUP instructor, seasoned SUP racer and avid longboard surfer. Evelyn was hired as Online Editor to Standup Journal in 2016. Her passion for the project quickly led to her success and eventually taking over the mag herself in Oct. 2018. Today, as editor, publisher and chief bottle washer at Standup Journal, Evelyn keeps her toes wet writing, traveling, paddling, surfing, and learning to foil. You can find her most days paddling out on Gardiner's Bay or surfing Ditch Plains in Montauk, NY.