OFFICIAL NAME OF THE ACTIVITY
as agreed apon by OGO & ZORB
OGO and ZORB have agreed to not call the activity "OGOing" or "Zorbing" or "Globe Riding" both companies will call the activity "Ball Rolling"
as agreed apon by OGO & ZORB, Bla bla bla....
The first inflatable ball for rolling downhill (later to be trademarked with the “Zorb” name) was designed and constructed by Andrew Akers and Dwane van der Sluis in 1994. In early 1995 seed capital and business experience support was sought from Craig Horrocks. Together Andrew, Dwane, Craig and Mark Sainsbury founded Zorb Limited and further test Zorb globes were constructed. Early tests were carried out at the Akers family farm in the Bay of Plenty, and on various hills around Auckland Andrew and Dwane had applied for a patent which was later transferred to Zorb Limited, and the New Zealand patent for the Zorb was obtained in 1995; and Zorb globes began to be constructed in Andrew’s garage. Trading commenced in December 1995 with a temporary site in Auckland, and the first permanent site was established in 1997 in Rotorua when Andrew’s brother David joined the company. In these early days there was much experimentation and David worked on a number of new innovations including the water-ride globe, the harness system and the Zurf. Meanwhile, a great deal of worldwide interest was being generated, with TV crews from around the world descending on Rotorua to film this iconic kiwi adventure tourism activity. People around the world began to enquire about setting up their own operations, and Craig and Andrew worked on building out the franchise network with partners in Europe, Japan and Australia. Andrew also oversaw the use of the zorb globes with international promotional partners including Toyota, Coca Cola, BMW, Nike, Sea World, and Bell South. In 2000 David Akers and Keith Kolver (who had joined as a manager of the Rotorua site) worked together with Design Engineer; Ad Leijnen (Craig’s father in law) to build the 'Zorbulator' – the large conveyor that takes the globes to the top of the hill. David and Keith and others at the Rotorua operation focussed on Zorb establishing itself as continuous improvements were made in manufacture and systems for safe operations. At the same time Andrew as CEO led a culture of continuous improvement into every area of the company operations. In 2004 John McNeil, a long-time friend of Andrew joined the company. John, as a qualified engineer, brought new skills as the franchise network continued to be built out around the world. Zorb Limited issued shares to professional investors by Private Placement in 2004 and 2006 which resulted in new shareholders in Canada, USA, Singapore and New Zealand including Board members Ray Stonelake and Graham Mackenzie. The company used those funds to build management capacity and then seek out new site opportunities resulting in American partners Allen Skinn and Chris Roberts identifying and starting construction at the site at Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, the 'Smoky Mountains' site which opened late 2007.In early 2005 Dwane, who had moved overseas, sold his shareholding in Zorb Limited. The planning, changes and challenges lead to divisions between the Board and management. As a result, in late 2006, Andrew and David Akers, John McNeil, Keith Kolver, Allen Skinn, and Chris Roberts left the Zorb Company and sold their shareholding in Zorb Limited.
Please check back at a later stage for an infographic that Andrew is working on, it might be a bit easier to read and understand.