Having a passion for something does not necessarily mean that you are able to do it for a living. However, sometimes you might face a choice: do as you always have or drop everything and live your passion. For Founder & CEO of Orca Scuba, Jeroen van de Waal, that is what he decided to do. And in September, this passion convinced the jury to make him the winner of Get in the Ring Singapore.
Two years ago, Jeroen van de Waal founded Orca Scuba as a side hobby to bring alive his passion for the ocean and diving. He hired a couple of people, but did not really put much of his own time into it. But in January this year, things changed.
As a former CEO of several international businesses, Jeroen had already achieved what most people would consider a successful life, but this was not enough. Realizing that he had the opportunity to make a real difference, he decided to go all in and work full-time on the Orca Scuba project. Because, as he said: “At a certain point in time you have to stop analysing and start moving”.
What first started as an idea of sharing his passion through a diving center and teaching people to dive evolved into something bigger. It became a means to achieve the ultimate vision: saving the oceans, planet and people.
By running diving centers Orca Scuba is starting to bring this vision to reality. The idea is that teaching children about diving and the ocean will enlighten and inspire them to make a positive impact in the world.
“About 4 billion people are under 30, and they need to have a positive outlook on the future of the oceans and the planet itself.” – Jeroen van de Waal, Founder & CEO of Orca Scuba
But in an effort to realize this vision, it became clear that it would not be enough to just focus on teaching about the ocean. There was also much to do on land. This realization developed the business into an educational concept. A concept that entails educating thousands, if not millions, of children and young adults worldwide.
With this concept, Orca Scuba intends to develop a facility for marine conservation, research and education and create an Oceanic Awareness Program to be taught at schools and universities.
With the second step of achieving the vision set in motion, the company has reach a point where the expansion requires additional funding.
So far, the company has been built up and developed only by the money invested by the Founder & CEO himself. But in order to achieve its goal, the company needs to increase its level of professionalism even further. That’s why the company is now going for its first external round of fundraising, through which the Orca Scuba team intends to raise $1.6 million SGD.
Passion can get you far
Jeroen van de Waal has made his passion his life. Not only did he found Orca Scuba, but also he wrote and published a book (‘Together We Can Turn Tides – a Manifesto to Save the Ocean, Planet & Ourselves’), which is available on Amazon, and he launched a foundation called ‘Creating Positive Footprints’.
On 14 September, Jeroen van de Waal entered, as the representative of Orca Scuba, Get in the Ring Singapore to show why his vision is worth fighting for. And it was this vision, passion and scalable business concept that made Jeroen and Orca Scuba the winner of Get in the Ring Singapore and the winner of a spot in the global final at the Global Meetup.