O’Neil Product Development Inc. a Closer Look
O’Neil Product Development Inc. a Closer Look. You may wonder what O’Neil Inc is. So, read on to know and take a closer look at O’Neil Product Development Inc.
A Background O’Neil Product Development Inc
O’Neil Inc is a company that designs and sells board sports products. The company was founded in 1978 by Larry O’Neil. Larry’s intention was to provide quality products to the surfing community. He pioneered in developing and manufacturing the first double-fin surfboard in the world.
The company is based in Santa Cruz, California.
A Brief History of O’Neil Product Development Inc
Larry O’Neil’s interest in surfing began when he was a kid living near Huntington Beach, California. He later joined the United States Navy, where he met his future wife and business partner, Pam O’Neil. In 1972, Larry and Pam moved to Santa Cruz and started their own surfboard factory called O’Neill Surfboards.
Then, in 1983, Pam O’Neil left her husband and started her own local competitor named Pacific Surfboards which she ran for ten years before retiring from business altogether.
Change of name
In 1989, Larry changed the name of his company from O’Neill Surfboards to O’Neill Product Development Inc (OPD). After successfully launching its first wetsuit line for surfing enthusiasts under its brand name “Atoll”. Which is French for “ring of coral” or “shell necklace”. It took them several years before they achieved success with their wetsuit lineup. Until their patent on neoprene-free wetsuits was approved in 1994. Their patent on the neoprene-free wetsuits led to lawsuits from other surfboard manufacturers who had used neoprene in their wetsuits. The patent earned them around $20 million in royalty fees from other companies.
O’Neill continued to release new designs for their products and for supporting their surfboard line, they signed up professional surfer Kelly Slater as their spokesperson. Larry O’Neill’s son, Shawn O’Neil, was also hired by his father to help him run the business. In 2007, O’Neill launched an all-new line of clothing called “O’Neill Signature Series” which was designed by pro riders Rob Machado and Tom Curren. The new line of clothing featured a distinctively bolder look that was quite different from the company’s classic designs.
Larry O’Neil retired as CEO of the company in 2008 but remained as Chairman of its Board until 2010. He was succeeded by Shawn O’Neil who became the president and chief executive officer of O’Neill Product Development Inc.
O’Neil continues to add more innovative designs to its product line and it currently has more than 70 models of wetsuits that are available in more than 30 countries worldwide. Their products are also sold in over 3,000 retail stores which include department stores or surf shops that carry surfing supplies online or offline.
Today, O’Neill Inc employs around 800 people worldwide who work together with their team of designers to develop high-quality products. They are now operating three factories located in Santa Cruz, California and two other facilities overseas in Japan and Mexico. They continue to prove their commitment to producing only the finest quality products with every design they come up with and every product they produce.
Today, you can find not just surfing boards but a wide range of products under the brand name “Atoll” which includes boardshorts, hoodies, caps, sandals and watches among others. Their products are available through their company website or through authorized retailers around the world including Amazon, eBay and BrandsMart USA among others.
They have also partnered with several international brands such as Nike and Coca Cola for sponsoring events for young surfers who participate in competitions held around the world annually. Some of these competitions include the Rip Curl Search series as well as other International Surfing Association (ISA) events.