The Diving Equipment and Marketing Association (DEMA) has announced that it has canceled plans for the consumer focused Water, Sports and Travel Festival which was originally scheduled for spring of 2013.
The troubled festival was supposed to supplement the trade only event DEMA runs later in the year however failed to gain support from a number of key members of the diving trade, especially those based in Florida, where the show was due to be held.
According to Tom Ingram, Executive Director of DEMA, “The Water, Sports and Travel Festival could only be conducted with the full support of the diving industry, including dive retailers, scuba manufacturers and training organizations. The cross marketing concept, originally introduced in 2011 at the DEMA Membership Meeting as a way to reach potential new diving customers, was initially embraced by diving equipment manufacturers, dive training organizations and dive travel providers, as well as by associations and companies in the board sports and water craft industries. Unfortunately, even after several changes to the proposed Festival structure, including prohibiting life support equipment sales by exhibitors, the Festival concept has not generated sufficient support from the diving business community.”
“After listening to stakeholders in the Diving Industry, and encountering various ongoing objections, the DEMA Board has determined that plans to stage the Festival should be ended now, prior to reaching important deadlines in the event’s production cycle,” stated Stephen Ashmore, President of the DEMA Board. “We appreciate those companies that signed on immediately and have continued to support the vision of the Festival, and we hope all Members will join us in determining future investment opportunities for DEMA to promote recreational diving and bring in new diving customers.”