Innovation Awards at the Miami Boat show PDF Print E-mail
Written by Zuzana Prochazka   

Fifteen marine products were honored for innovative achievement by the National Marine Manufacturers Association and Boating Writers International (BWI) at the 71st annual Progressive Insurance Miami International Boat Show & Strictly Sail. (Yes, that’s a longer name for the Miami boat show.)

I had the pleasure of working with six other judges from BWI and we ran ourselves ragged as we saw 68 products two days before the show opened.  Although I gave a much more colourful presentation at the industry breakfast on Thursday – here are just the highlights of the winners as per NMMA’s release and a few of my blurry behind-the-scenes shots of the crazy judging process.

Thirteen companies took home 2012 Innovation Award honors and two others received honorable mention during the NMMA’s State of the Recreational Boating Industry Breakfast this morning at the Miami Beach Convention Center.

The Innovation Awards, organized by NMMA and judged by BWI, recognize products that best meet the following criteria: innovative distinction from other products currently being manufactured; benefit to the marine industry and/or consumer; practicality; cost-effectiveness; and availability to the consumer within 60 days of award receipt.
“The number of entries this year exceeded our expectations, and all of the products we reviewed paint a bright future for boating industry evolution,” noted Zuzana Prochazka, Innovation Awards judge chair, editor of, technical editor of Latitudes & Attitudes and president of the BWI board of directors. “The winners recognized at the boat show today are a testament to the ongoing commitment to boating ingenuity necessary to the future of our industry and we’re excited to see how these products adapt in the marketplace.”

Applications and Mobile Software: Beneteau Toucan Dealer App by Jester Communications

Runabout and Fishing Craft to 24 feet: Pro Skiff Series by Mako

Cruisers (25' to 60' including fishing craft): SLX 250 by Sea Ray

PWC & Jet Boats: Sea Doo RXP-X 260 by Bombardier

Sailboats: Oceanis Series 48 by Beneteau

Docking and Fendering Equipment: V-Lift by Sunstream Boat Lifts

Honorable Mention: Eel Shore Power Cord by Marinco

Consumer Electronics and Software: InReach by Delorme

Honorable Mention: MS-AV700 Audio and Video Entertainment Package by Fusion Electronics

Consumer Installed Non-Electronic Hardware: Scuba Donning Assistance System by Dive Mate

Water Sports & Equipment: Battle Saddle by Release Marine

Outboard Engines: DF300 AP by Suzuki Marine

Consumer Safety Equipment: AIS Watchmate Vision by Vesper

Pontoon & Deckboats: Ambassador by Avalon

Environmental Award: Propane Outboard by Lehr