The Hocke Net

1.19.12 - Ken Hocke Blog photo Questions begging an answer at the IWBS

December 4, 2012

As an editor for the WorkBoat brand, which includes the magazine, the web site, the International WorkBoat Show — all things WorkBoat — the show doesn’t begin for me on Wednesday. It begins on Monday night, when our editor in chief David Krapf hosts a dinner for all the speakers taking part in our Executive Summit held the day before the show begins.

The dinner is held at Antoine’s each year, one of the oldest and most respected restaurants in New Orleans. The first of many questions came to mind when I was served a piece of Antoine’s version of Baked Alaska, which is just slightly smaller than the iceberg that sank the Titanic. So the question I asked myself was, could I eat the whole piece of dessert I was served. The answer was no. My taste buds were willing, but my stomach threw in the towel. But I wasn’t the only one. In fact, the only one of the eight of us who finished it was our publisher Jerry Fraser.

As publisher, he’s use to getting things done.

Today, during a roundtable discussion at the Executive Summit, I asked Nathan P. Horner Jr., an attorney and shareholder of Lugerbuhl, Wheaton, Peck, Rankin & Hubbard and Ken Becker, director, AMACapital Partners, about companies, specifically smaller, privately owned marine companies that find themselves in financial trouble. “Do you run into trouble while trying to help these companies that are, many times, a family owned business that has done things a certain way for generations, not wanting to change, even if that change will save their business?” I asked.

Both men said they have seen just such a scenario. They are hired to help, but their advice is ignored. Go figure.

Here are three questions I have in my mind on the eve of the first day of the IWBS:

• How many owners, designers, builders of boats that have been notified that their vessel is NOMINATED for a Significant Boat Award take that notification as a sign they’re won one of the 10 awards? A nomination is a nomination. If you want to know if you’ve won, come to the Significant Boat Awards ceremony tomorrow at 3 p.m. on the show floor.

• Business in the Gulf of Mexico is booming. Will that put more or fewer bodies on the show floor this week?

• For the next three days, which of the following will be longer: the equator or the line at the Starbucks in the convention center lobby?

Have a good show everybody.

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