what a strange message.
If your a loyal fan of US Divers-Aqua Lung you should know than since 1966 we're bound to PADI (https://www.padi.com/about-padi/padi-history). John Cronin, a scuba equipment salesman for U.S. Diver created PADI at that time. The picture we take today is the continuity of our shared story, nothing to see with SSI/Mares. We have other options to fight that situation.
PADI & the Aqua Lung group have some common DNA, sorry if you don't like it but sometime we built up some "programs" to help the development and the growth of our diving business. It will be the case soon on the french market.
Upon which I replied:
Cousteau created CMAS, and was seated on the supervisory board of NAUI long before that...
I understand there's a need to continue developing the diving business.
Joint marketing with PADI, when it comes to B2C fine!
However on the 'PRO' market, an open approach without too much binding yourself to an educational company that forfeits educational value = quality, for income and balance sheets would be more sane.
PADI does not reflect the same values as Aqualung period.
And then there was silence ;)
As an ex corporate - executive in the diving 'industry', turned independent consultant; I will not be associated with investment funds in any way. I will not be dictated by a manufacturer how to learn people to dive, and vice versa I will not be dictated or spoon fed a brand of equipment; and certainly not for some nameless investors hoping to make a quick buck.
Therefore I have decided to sever my relationship of over 25 years with these conglomerates and will turn my attention to Dive Poseidon, Hollis, Maya, BFTB, DIVE RAID and so many more SMB's (small and medium sized businesses) that produce quality Diving & Waters ports gear and services, some of those since decades with impeccable track records.
Their dedication, hard work and passion for the industry deserve the support of EVERY quality DIVE PROFESSIONAL worldwide!
For the 'Executives' who have so called guarded the legacy of Aqualung for 70 years I have one message:
With such an amazing brand how could you fail so badly? The Captain innovated more in his active diving years , than the combined management teams have done since.
If you are interested in knowing more or actively want to change the industry of today towards professionalism, or need advice please don't hesitate to contact me.
Please give my page on FB a like to stay updated, and don't hesitate to comment below or even better share this article to your colleagues.
Thanks for reading!
Rectification with thanks to John Englander
Changed Cousteau created CMAS & NAUI to "Cousteau created CMAS, and was seated on the supervisory board of NAUI long before that..."
Unite Against PADI increase: https://www.facebook.com/groups/243763705784372/?ref=br_rs
Aqualung sold to private equity firm courtesy of Rosemary Lunn (you rock girl!) and X-Ray Magazine:
Montagu - Deutsche Bank relation:
Providence Equity - PADI:
Providence eyes quick flip of dive instruction business PADI at up to 1Bn.:
© THEOCEANROAMER - H.Hemmerechts
John Englander 'Thought Leader', keynote speaker, consultant on climate change, rising sea level and adaptation to increased flooding
Henri -- I just read your January 17 post. Very interesting stuff. Though I am no longer involved in the dive industry at all, a few decades ago I was quite involved with some of the organizations you cite, including having been CEO of the Cousteau Society at the time Jacques died. Since you seem to have quite a lot of good detail in your post, you should be aware of two errors that caught my eye. 1) The lawsuit about the control of PADI ("the Dibble case") did not result in Project AWARE, but rather the PADI Foundation, a separate nonprofit entity funded by PADI but totally independent. [I was a Director of that for more than a decade. It still operates.] 2) Cousteau may have allowed his name to be used on the NAUI Board at the start, but really had nothing to do with the organization. The primary creators of NAUI were Neal Hess who stated the National Diving Patrol column in SKIN DIVER Magazine and Al Tillman, who innovated the LA County diving program. Out of that, NAUI was born. -- though as a full nonprofit democratically controlled organization, there were soon many involved with NAUI leadership. [I was President of the NAUI Board for several years in the early 80's]
Henri Hemmerechts Environmentally Sustainable Marine Tourism Consultant
Point 1: Thanks for the clarification!
Point 2: I was referring to him being on the board, and being the president of the CMAS at the time, which was controlling NAUI