I am trying to remain professional on this topic and not vent about a whole litany of issues we have/had with ADA, but it looks like GreenFlash pretty much nailed it already anyway. ADA has never taken the U.S. market seriously and refused all suggestion on how to make it better. They'd ask you for input, then argue with or just flat ignore everything you'd come back with. Very frustrating. We worked our butts off against a lot of odds to try and grow the market. It's bizarre to me that right as we start to produce some fruit (triple digit sales growth in the last 2 years) they pull out the rug over (what I believe anyway) an unfortunate staff-related incident we had that honestly was none of their business.
The "disagreement/marketing approach" thing is something I am still to figure out myself. ADA seems to think that higher prices for the end user will somehow grow their market. Our goal from the very beginning was to keep the price as competitive as possible (even then it was very difficult as the straight price from Japan is conducive to being "competitive" at all- I think we all know why). I am somewhat shocked that we lasted 9 years with it. There were so many times I should have gotten out but hung in there anyway. Not sure why sometimes. I can assure no real money was ever made. It's practically impossible with the pricing structure.
In the end this will prove a big mistake for ADA . Not because we are so great or anything, but because now we will have to (well, we already are) develop our own product line that will match the quality of everything ADG already does and is known for as far as aquascaping is concerned. We think the U.S. market is ready, deserves better, and we intend to deliver. We are already well down this path and have significant capital behind us so things are moving quickly.
There's some awesome stuff coming guys. Our new retail concept store and accompanying website as a platform for presenting the line and our whole aquarium philosophy (beyond planted tanks even) will delight-- I promise you. Trust me- I know the current adgshop site is a headache-inducing mess. It's dated and lame and does not represent where we are as a company today. Rest assured all that is changing. We were actually about to launch a new ADA products site that was so cool-- right as they dropped us. So we've regrouped and taken it even further as a platform for our own products and ones we exclusively endorse.
In the meantime, I have dropped the price on several items and we have plenty of Aqua Soil in stock. I mean the stuff does work.
Things will be changing in U.S. market. We will have the full weight of our talents (aquascaping, social media, photo/video production, etc.) behind this new venture. Please do stay tuned.