Report: What a year it has been! We finally have the news that you’ve been waiting for: We have started shipping! It’s time to #diveBLU3.
The Past Year
One year ago today, NEMO by BLU3 became successfully funded as a project on Kickstarter. Over the course of 34 days, 237 backers pledged a total of $138,320 to bring our project to life. On that October 4, 2018, the members of the BLU3 team felt joy, excitement, and a new source of motivation, all paired with the pressure and stress that comes along when reality hits that backers are now waiting anxiously for a reward.
The entire team and our friends and family were ecstatic for the future of BLU3. After failing to reach our funding goal on our first Kickstarter campaign months prior, we achieved an incredible comeback, finding ourselves fully funded in less than 36 hours after launching a project to bring The World’s Smallest Dive System to market. Backers from 23 different countries made it clear that people around the world wanted a compact, travel-capable, and user-friendly device that allows them to explore the underwater world with ease.
As it often happens when you start a new business venture, soon after the conclusion of our campaign we started to come across speed bumps we never anticipated. Most significantly, we discovered that our plan for using a production-grade 3D printer to build the first NEMOs was not going to pan out. We learned that we would need to injection mold the plastic parts of NEMO, a process we thought may require just a few design changes on our end and a few months for the injection molder to deliver the parts to us. Over the next 9 months, we learned firsthand about all of the detailed work and time that is required to move a part from a design file on a computer to a plastic molded part that can be mass manufactured and work every time. We learned just how much 3 thousandths of an inch can impact a system’s performance. Looking back, we also learned that all of our attention to detail paid off tremendously, as any major change to the mold can take over a month to complete.
NEMO is simple in concept. It is a battery powered air compressor which activates when triggered by a sensor that detects when a diver begins to inhale. What’s not so simple is designing and testing parts to last hundreds of dives and creating manufacturing processes that will be used to efficiently build thousands of NEMOs. Today, we are proud to announce that we have conquered the countless number of challenges that stood in our way. The first shipments of NEMO are underway!
The First Shipment
Last Friday we hosted team members, friends and family at the BLU3 headquarters for a celebration of the first NEMO shipment. We had a wonderful day giving tours of the assembly line, packaging the first units, and waving goodbye as the FedEx driver departed with the first production NEMOs. The next major milestone is to fulfill all of the pre-orders, which we expect to accomplish over the next month and a half to two months.
How to Prepare for Your NEMO
Now that NEMOs are shipping, you should make sure you have everything else you need to dive. This includes at least a dive mask and fins, but you may also want a weight belt, weights, snorkel and mask defog. If you wish you had ordered accessories like a NEMO Backpack or a spare Battery, you can still do so through the Indiegogo page. You can also go to diveblu3.com/shop to purchase our recommended rubber belt. If you order any accessories, please notify us by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org so we can include everything in the same shipping box.
Prior to diving for the first time, you will need to complete the NEMO Online Dive Training Course, which is available at diveblu3.teachable.com. You can get started on this at any time by enrolling for free at that link. Make sure to keep note of the Certificate of Completion Code at the end of the course as you will need this to be able to register your product for warranty. The course can be accessed from mobile devices as well.
Shipping Around the World
Today we began shipments to 5 different countries around the world. We can’t wait to see photos of you all using NEMO from all over the globe! Make sure to use the hashtag #diveBLU3 when posting to social media.
Come Visit Us
NEMO will be displayed at a few major trade shows over the next couple months. Right now you can find NEMO at the U.S. Powerboat Show in Annapolis, Maryland in Tent D73. Next weekend we’ll be in the same tent as part of the U.S. Sailboat Show. We’ll also be at the Fort Lauderdale Boat Show October 30th to November 3rd and DEMA in Orlando November 13th to 16th, so if you’re around, be sure to stop by and say hello.
We are forever grateful to all of our backers and everyone else who was contributed to this journey. We could not have made it to this point without you! Thank you to our friends and family for supporting us through late nights and long weeks. Thank you to all of the magazines and websites that have published articles about NEMO, and to everyone who has shared NEMO with others through conversation or social media. It has been an amazing ride to bring this product to market. The future is bright.
Forecast: We are ramping up our production week by week to ensure quality does not decline as we increase our throughput. Right now we expect it to take close to two months to make it through all of the Kickstarter and Indiegogo orders. Be sure to keep an eye on your email inbox for your surveys. We need you to fill these out and sign the NEMO Waiver that we will send via DocuSign before we can ship your NEMO. If you have any questions, feel free to email us at email@example.com.