NEMO, the award-winning, independent designer of outdoor gear and accessories built to improve the adventure experience, has nearly doubled its team over the past 2 years, with 6 more positions planned in 2022. As the brand approaches its 20th anniversary, NEMO sees the steady growth trajectory as not only a positive indicator of sales, but as a necessity as it maps out its ambitious climate goals.
Prior to the start of the pandemic, NEMO was in the process of expanding its team. When the pandemic hit in Spring 2020, founder and CEO Cam Brensinger made some difficult decisions. One, was drastically reducing the sales forecast for the year and basing all financial assumptions off that new number.
“We decided to base our sales target on what it would take to retain our people and not have to furlough or lay off,” Brensinger said in an interview with The Voice. “Throughout the pandemic, the one area we didn’t put the brakes on, was product development. We saw a big competitive advantage in being a brand that never took its foot off the gas on product development.”
By the end of 2020, NEMO had kept all of its employees and back paid them the salary cuts that had been implemented over the previous months. In March of 2021, NPD Group named NEMO the fastest growing camping brand in the US outdoor industry. While NEMO was already growing prior to the pandemic, the rise in interest for all things outdoors boosted NEMO’s product sales through both its retail partners and website. Areas of growth that the company has been focusing on include systems and processes, customer service, people and culture development and diversity, sales and marketing, and product development.
“We continue to be intentional and thoughtful about our growth,” said Brensinger. “Creating a sustainable business will allow us to continue to make substantial progress in addressing climate change and advocating for social justice, equity, diversity and inclusivity. Investing in programs to support our manufacturing partners, like Clean By Design; sourcing sustainable materials through partners like bluesign; and auditing our Greenhouse Gas Emissions, wouldn’t be possible without profitable sales margins and a dedicated team to get the work done.”
“After 13 years of working for some great outdoor brands across several different departments, it felt like the opportunity at NEMO was a perfect fit,” said Darren Josey, NEMO’s director of marketing since January 2021, recently promoted to Vice President of Marketing. “I and so many of my BIPOC peers often feel like the moment will never come. However, my time at NEMO has not only fulfilled my personal career goals, but I’m asked, ‘what do you need from us to accommodate more diversity and inclusion?’. As a proud Puerto Rican and Black outdoor enthusiast, I’m personally and professionally motivated to make places where we recreate safer, while also inviting others from the BIPOC community to join in our industry’s corporate HQ’s. One of NEMO’s first real actions in 2022 is committing resources to help more potential and existing outdoor enthusiasts gain inspiration and skills, find places to go and people to go with through our upcoming Adventure Resources page.”
NEMO expects to hire an additional 6 people in product design and engineering, quality assurance and dealer services. The goal with each hire is to build a thriving team that reflects diversity, protects the places we all depend on for outdoor recreation, and works to create equitable and inclusive access to the outdoors. For more information, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
NEMO is a New Hampshire-based outdoor gear company known for creating award-winning products that are built to last, comfortable and fun to use. Named the fastest growing camping brand in 2021 by NPD Group, NEMO has also been recognized by New Hampshire Businesses for Social Responsibility as a small business leader for the environment, and recently won the 2021 Sustainability Slam for its 100K Polybag Elimination Project which commits to removing 100,000 polybags from the brand’s product line by 2023. NEMO’s reputation for design innovation across its product lines—tents, sleeping bags, sleeping pads, camp accessories and furniture—is an outgrowth of its design philosophy to never bring anything to market that doesn’t offer a meaningfully better experience. NEMO’s team of designers and engineers are motivated by a passion for outdoor adventure and sustainability.
Adventure Anywhere. Adventure for All. Adventure Always.