Andre Santos - Member of the World Paddle Awards Academy
Andre Santos is Chief Executive of one of the world's largest and leading canoe and kayak manufacturing brands, Nelo International.
Based in Porto Portugal, Andre is a true innovator when it comes to paddlesports – his vision is of providing athletes with the technology, the tools and the knowledge to achieve success. His work has allowed athletes from under-represented countries from all continents to have the opportunities and means to train and compete.
Driving the sport globally through the indisputable credibility of the brand, Andre is a firm-believer of encouraging collaboration and awareness between the different paddling disciplines; hence why his company designs slalom, paracanoe, sprint, sea kayaking touring, surfski, ocean-racing and fitness boats. He works directly with athletes - such as Olympic gold medalist slalom kayaker Daniele Molmenti on the DM350 project - to design, innovate, tweak and improve existing models.
Andre has also had the honour of developing the infrastructure and organisation for several major international events including the Nelo Summer Challenge, a prestigious ocean-racing competition that encouraged the birth of the ICF Ocean Racing World Championships, as well as the Nelo Winter Challenge in Portugal for canoe sprinters. Nelo's training camps have allowed athletes from all nationalities and age groups to train in warmer climates during winter months.
In essence, Andre is one of the most respected individuals in the manufacturing sphere because of his unparalleled work ethic, integrity. He is always open to other people and ideas, speaks multiple languages, is always travelling somewhere around the world. With his expertise and professionalism, he is a valued member of the World Paddle Awards Academy.