Can somebody explain the mechanics of what SC has done?

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Posted by A Diver on June 28, 2007 at 02:36:14:

In Reply to: Re: Can somebody explain the mechanics of what SC has done? posted by MHK on June 27, 2007 at 17:59:23:

Okay, everyone take a deep breath and think before you go hammering on your computer keyboard. There have been so many things posted about Sport Chalet over the years that are incorrect and frankly some "made up ____" is being posted now. Some of you have an Open Water C-card and profess to know everything about diving and the diving business. You don't!

And, by the way, it’s SPORT CHALET not SPORTS CHALET. You only show your ignorance when you call it Sports Chalet.

If, after reading this you are still mad at Sport Chalet then, by all means, don't shop there. But make that decision based the true and correct reasons and not "made up ____".

Here are some truths that should dispel the inaccuracies.

1) Sport Chalet entered into a series of agreements with a variety of boats prior to the end of 2006 for the 2007 diving year. TRUE

2) Sport Chalet secured the most desirable dates and the boats saved those dates per the agreement. PARTLY- TRUE. Sport Chalet secured many dates but not always the MOST DESIRABLE. All the local and not-so-local shops get to use the same dates from the prior years. They get first choice at taking the same dates. If they don't want them then those dates go to other shops and not necessarily Sport Chalet. Many other shops have some of the most desirable dates.

3) Now in the middle of the dive year, Chris Robinson of Sport Chalet had a series of meeting with some of the boat owners and presented a "take it of leave it" reduction in fees. TRUE And the timing of his actions, early Summer, mid-contract year, really is the issue isn't it? TRUE

4) Sport Chalet knowingly violated the agreement(s), presumably under the misguided idea that the boats would be forced to acquiesce to his demands; Part one is TRUE; part two is a GUESS (presumably means guess).

5) Moreover, Sport Chalet can very well afford and sustain the litigation costs and short-term losses presented under this breach of contract. The boats are much smaller and are certainly not in the same financial league as the publicly traded corporate giant. That is an OPINION. My opinion is that NO BUSINESS wants to litigate, ever.

6. PADI is not the first training agency to provide on-line training. TRUE Today's students WANT on-line training. TRUE. CD-ROM training has been available for at least 10 years. TRUE On-line training and CD-ROM training are essentially the same so what's your problem with it? Students must still complete pool and ocean sessions successfully to earn their certification. TRUE

7. The 2 for 1 sale WAS a promotion that was originally created by PADI and tried in the entire San Diego area in the summer of 2003. All PADI retailers in San Diego participated in the promotion. It was originally a test of a marketing idea from PADI. Sport Chalet opted to offer the promotion at all Southern California locations. TRUE

8. The 2 for 1 sale was so successful in creating new divers (what's the problem with that again?) that it was used again several times but never in the summer and only during the slower months after summer ended. As it turns out the 2 for 1 price was only a few dollars less than the usual sale price Sport Chalet offered in prior years. TRUE

9. Many of those students went on to become rescue divers, divemasters, assistant instructors, and even instructors. TRUE Some at other dive shops. TRUE

10. If the training at Sport Chalet was less expensive does that automatically mean the training was watered down? NO

11. If the training were watered down you would have heard or read about all the injuries or deaths of Sport Chalet trained students. But there weren't any major injuries or deaths. TRUE

12. Sport Chalet only sells about 6 worthless SCUBA products on-line and Sport Chalet doesn't even choose the products. So, for those of you who have SCREWED YOUR local dive shops and purchased ANY equipment on-line it wasn't from Sport Chalet (Leisure Pro, SCUBA.COM or eBay ring a bell?). TRUE YOU OFTEN SHOP PRICE on SCUBA equipment! TRUE

13. Poorly run SCUBA stores go out of business. Well-run SCUBA stores stay in business. TRUE Many successful retailers are very close to Sport Chalet locations and they thrive. Bad business practices have put a few poorly run stores out of business. But at the same time others have been very successful and some have even grown. Beach Cities now has 4 stores. A new store just opened in Lake Forest near several Sport Chalet locations. Reef Seekers did very well competing with Sport Chalet. They just lost their lease. But Ken will continue to thrive because he runs a great SCUBA business. Hollywood Divers is excellent. Ocean Adventures does a great job about 1/2 mile from a Sport Chalet. Eco Dive is fairly new but appears to be doing well. Aloha Dive is doing fine. SSA in Montclair does a very good job. Ocean Enterprises in San Diego does very well and competes with 3 Sport Chalet locations. Trust me, they all love the students that are created by Sport Chalet. Many become their customers. (So why are you so upset about lots of new divers? They're not!) TRUE

14. Sport Chalet has not put any vendor out of business. That is a ludicrous thought. Good vendors stay in business, bad vendors don't. TRUE

15. Out of the thousands of divers in Southern California there are only a handful that are actually posting comments. Are you really getting the message out? NO

16. If you really want to make an impact and be heard have the COURAGE to call or write Sport Chalet and let them know how you feel. TRUE.

17. If you really don't want to make an impact continue to post poorly written and even more poorly thought out comments. TRUE

18. It scares me that some of you are actually divers. (Remember STOP, THINK, then ACT) TRUE

19. I have taken classes at Sport Chalet. TRUE I have spent money at other dive retailers. TRUE

So quit whining about the same old “stuff" and guessing at what goes on at Sport Chalet, book a charter on the Great Escape or the Cee Ray, and then show some COURAGE!


Sport Chalet
1 Sport Chalet Drive
La Canada, CA 91011

The phone number is (818) 949-5300.

The Chairman of the Board, President, and CEO is Craig Levra. Let him know how unhappy you are and why. And try and be professional in your comments. They will have a much greater impact.

All this is public information because they are a publicly traded company.

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