The National Geographic Society has announced it has teamed up with the Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI) to develop a branded, recreational scuba diving program that promotes underwater exploration and marine conservation. This new licensing relationship was introduced at the Diving Equipment & Marketing Association tradeshow from Oct. 8 to 11.
The National Geographic Diver Program will give individuals the opportunity to experience the world of diving and become a certified National Geographic diver. The program, which will be offered at select five-star dive centers in the Americas from spring 2004 then expend to international territories in 2005, will be designed to promote underwater exploration, marine conservation and underwater photography. "This program will inspire divers of all ages and levels to explore and appreciate the marine environment, giving them a personal experience and meaningful interaction with the underwater world," said John Dumbacher, senior vice president of licensing for National Geographic. "This is in line with our commitment to share information about underwater exploration."
"Our mission is to teach the world to scuba dive so that they will appreciate and conserve the underwater world," said Bob Coleman, executive vice president of sales and marketing for PADI Americas. "The National Geographic Diver Program combines our expertise in dive training with National Geographic’s marine experts and vast resources to create the ultimate undersea adventure."
As with all of National Geographic’s licensing programs, National Geographic experts will participate in the development of this new initiative. The program will include such experts as marine biologists, underwater archaeologists, marine geologists and underwater photographers, and will draw on the vast resources of the Society’s underwater photography, maps, marine film footage and print editorial.
To inspire interest in underwater exploration, PADI will create and distribute an educational packet with information about the National Geographic Diver Program that will be available through select retail outlets, online and via catalog. The packet will include a promotional DVD as well as discount coupons that can be utilized towards the National Geographic Diver Program. As part of a growing commitment to fund the Society’s initiatives, all of National Geographic’s net proceeds from the National Geographic Diver Program will support exploration, conservation, research and education. National Geographic supports an array of marine initiatives, including expeditions to reveal and share unique underwater environments around the globe. Other projects include preservation of national marine sanctuaries and protection of endangered aquatic animals and plants.
To learn more about this exciting partnership, log on to PADI’s website at www.padi.com