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Just saw this and I wonder what that will do to the design of future skis? Anything? Only time will tell.....

Date: 12/1/05

Author: HO Sports Company, Inc. Press Release

Herb O’Brien, Paul O’Brien and Brian Gardner have resigned their positions with HO Sports Company, Inc. We wish them well. Brian Gardner will remain as President until April 30, 2006, to assist us with an effective management transition. C. J. Vlahovich was elected an officer of the Company as Vice President of Sales effective December 1, 2005.

CJ joined the company in 1995 in Customer Service and was promoted to Sales Manager in 2000. CJ’s passion for the Water Sports Industry, his enthusiasm, his work ethic and his sales leadership ability highly qualify him to be an officer of HO Sports Company, Inc. Candidates are being reviewed for the position of Vice President of Marketing.

HO Sports Company, Inc. held a Sales Meeting in Columbus, Ohio on Thursday, December 1, 2005. The HO/Hyperlite Management and Sales Teams are committed to continue providing innovative and leading edge products which have made the Company a Water Sports Industry Leader.

Robert M. Archer, CEO

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Also "Resigned" = Fired.

The "empire" (not the HO empire) has been growing steadily...If Herb resigned, it tells me that he got fed up and resigned...While it could happen, I do not see Herb and Paul being fired.

The "founder" of mainstream watersports does not resign to avoid a firing, IMO. I think he either gets upset and starts another company, or he gets fired like a man. He is NOT the kind of figure who gets ousted through a "I want your resignation" process.

J- So how is one supposed to leave a job? Under your theory, everyone gets fired, and thats not the case.

FWIW, I think it's sad that the industry is just one big conglomerate. And it's sad not to have Herb involved...but I bet he hasn't quit, just quit HO.

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John - Call it what you want but I have enough inside knowledge to know that it wasn't his idea.

Hyperlite/HO has some serious problems right now....getting all the gear from China being number one. LF also has lots of problems. Funny, both are owned by Uncle Bob.

Look for Herb Obrien v3.0 aka J-Star as soon as the non-compete clause expires.

EDIT: By resigned I meant that is how Bob is spinning it.....FYI Herb has been gone for about a month already.

Edited by J-Ro
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Well, I dont' think Herb is done. I think they all tend to go make another company- D3 comes to mind. I don't think it's any coincedence that the D and 3 are combined as this is Denny's third enterprise.

What I will be watching for is where do Eddie and Chet fall? Those two are the wealth of HO. Where they go is where the HO customers are going to go.

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This will be very interesting.....With all this movement, could it be a reason why Andy Mapple left O'brien and revamped the Jobe ski??

Why did Andy leave?

Has anyone tried the new Jobe ski?


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I know that they have been having a ton of transitional problems with China. They are a couple of months behind with their 2006 board line. Also, with the rash of problems they had with the 2005 line. This could be a contributing factor.

Either way, if Herb was "fired", I am sure he is crying all the way to the bank with his golden parachute. When you found, and manage a company of that size it is only a matter of time before you get kicked out for fresh, young, enthusiastic people. It is healthy for a company to have those types of changes to create new ideas and improve the well being of the company.

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Off topic, but related to the title of this post. Has anyone seen the Larry the cable guy's politically correct "twas the night before christmas"

Lady of the evening, lady of the evening, lady of the evening...


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Back on topic....

I've been thinking about this a bit since skisix initially posted it - my initial reaction was that this sucks. But after thinking about it, I've come around to thinking that this will be good for the industry. As many have pointed out, there are a lot of problems within the industry at the moment & frankly a shakeup may be what is needed. Whether he was fired, forced out or left of his own account, it all adds up to the same thing - he wasn't getting along there & that *probably* comes back to him not agreeing with some of the ways that they do business. Herb Obrien does have a golden parachute, but for good reason - he knows his stuff. I look forward to what he'll bring to the table, once the non-compete clause is up that is.

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I would bet that it doesn't keep him from getting a very good business plan & road map laid out, if not design as well.

You're correct. He could do all the planning and preparation that he sees fit but could not bring anything to market. Hypothetically speaking, of course... ;)

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...anybody speculate on how long that non compete clause is???

Regardless of the language in the agreement, those clauses are interpreted differently in each state. In some states such agreements are not even enforceable. Terms (length of time, cash consideration etc...) as stated in the agreement are merely the starting point for litigation.

I suspect if he received a big wad of cash, he will disappear. Little or no cash...we might see a new ski manufacturer.

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A lot of shack up to be sure! Will see who it's good for. Anybody heard or seen anything on the new Fischer ski "yellow tail"? With the new "jobe" and Fischer ski coming out it will be an interesting spring.

I can't wait for spring!!!!!! It's always dark and it's not been above 10 deg F for the last 4 days!

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A lot of shack up to be sure!  Will see who it's good for.  Anybody heard or seen anything on the new Fischer ski "yellow tail"?  With the new "jobe" and Fischer ski coming out it will be an interesting spring.

I can't wait for spring!!!!!!  It's always dark and it's not been above 10 deg F for the last 4 days!

I'd either have to move or be on depression medication with temps like that :(

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