Richard Nixon, Apollo 8, The Beatles, Cheap Gasoline and the Boating C

In 1970, the company introduced the world’s first plastic pedal boat, followed by the first plastic canoe the following year. But this was just the beginning...

LAVAL, QUEBEC, January 28, 2013 – The year was 1968. Richard Nixon was elected president of the United States. Apollo 8 launched the first American manned mission to the moon. The Beatles’ “White” album hit number one and a gallon of gasoline cost just 34 cents. It was also the year that the company that would quickly become the industry leader in boating innovation was born.

From its inception as Eskay Plastics, the young company focused on developing innovative, quality watercraft at affordable prices. In 1970, the company introduced the world’s first plastic pedal boat, followed by the first plastic canoe the following year. But this was just the beginning for the company, whose name was changed to Pelican International in 1978.
The company continued to develop new materials and manufacturing techniques that quickly set new industry standards in performance, safety, comfort and durability.

In 1995 the current owners purchased the company from their father. The company began a decade of aggressive growth and quickly outgrew its existing location. In 2001, Pelican built a 200,000 square foot factory in Laval, Quebec. At the same time, the company began to invest in state of the art twin-sheet thermoforming machinery and shortly thereafter, the first Pelican Kayak was launched.

In 2005, as Pelican continued to expand its operations, the company once again outgrew its facilities and another 100,000 square feet were added to its plant, for a current total of 300,000 square feet.

Never content to stand on its laurels, at Pelican, the innovation never stops. In 2009, the company introduced its mid-to-high end Elie kayak line. The Lavika line of accessories followed in 2010. In 2011, Pelican’s Elie Strait 140 XE was named ‘Best Boat” by Outside Magazine. Most recently, the company expanded its market segments by introducing a line of kayaks specially proportioned for younger paddlers, a complete line of stand-up paddleboards, as well a line of highly advanced kayak models equipped with features for more sophisticated paddlers. In 2012, the company’s launched its impressive Pulse series, a line of affordable kayaks that has made it possible for more paddlers than ever to get on the water.

To date, Pelican has sold over 1.7 million boats in over 25 countries and is now the largest manufacturer of small plastic boats worldwide. The company continues to innovate and invest in the state-of-the-art technology that enables it produce durable, quality products at affordable prices.

Pelican’s 2013 lineup:

Sit-In Kayaks

Pelican’s line of sit-in kayaks now includes 9 single and tandem models, ranging from basic beginner-friendly boats to recreational models with convenient touring features that impress even the most discerning paddlers. Sit-in models are available in 8, 10, 12 and 14-foot lengths with capacities up to 350 lbs. for single models and 475 lbs. for tandems. With two sit-in fishing-equipped models (available in 10-foot and 12-foot lengths) equipped with one swivel and 2 flush mounted rod holders, Pelican’s line of sit-in kayaks truly does offer something for everyone.

Sit-On Kayaks

Pelican’s line of 8 sit-on models, including both single and tandem options, includes a new 8-foot model for 2013: the Sonic 80 and 80X. Available in 6, 8, 10, 11.5 and 13-foot models ,with capacities up to 275 lbs. for single models and 500 lbs. for tandem models, the sit-on line also includes 2 fishing-equipped models, each with 1 swivel and 2 vertical rod holders.

Superior Technology and Craftsmanship

In addition to the remarkable diversity of its line of products, Pelican leads the industry in manufacturing technology and craftsmanship. Pelican kayaks are made using state of the art Twin Sheet Thermoforming (TST) and Pelican’s exclusive RAM-X™ material, a high molecular weight polyethylene that has become the benchmark of quality in the industry. The TST process allows Pelican to use this higher grade of plastic, resulting in a lightweight kayak that offers not only improved rigidity for greater agility and responsiveness, but also an exceptionally durable vessel thanks to its remarkable impact-resistance, ability to regain its shape following a violent impact, and UV-protected exterior finish.

Stand-Up Paddleboards

In response to the growing popularity of stand-up paddleboarding, Pelican has expanded its line of stand-up paddleboards. For 2013, Pelican offers 4 SUPs, including the new 8-foot Vibe for smaller paddlers. Available in 8, 10.4, 10.6 and 11.4-foot lengths and with capacities up to 260 lbs., all models are made of high-density polyethylene. The Surge models are foam-filled, making them 30% lighter than other boards and exceptionally easy to take along.

Other Boats

In addition to its kayaks and SUPs, Pelican offers a wide variety of recreational and sporting boats, including 2 canoes (14.6-foot and 15.5-foot models with capacities up to 800 lbs.), 5 fishing boats, including mini pontoon-style boats, “Jon-style” boats and a modified V-hull boat (Eight to twelve foot lengths are available and certain models are pre-wired for electric motors or sonar), and 7 pedal boat models, ranging from 3 to 5 person configurations, both basic models and higher end versions equipped with canopies and coolers. There is also an electric pedal boat with 5 forward and 2 reverse speeds.

However you like to get on the water, Pelican has something for you!

Environmental Responsibility

As a company whose products focus on the enjoyment of nature and the great outdoors, Pelican is committed to minimizing its impact on the environment. That’s why the company recycles 99.9% of the scrap created during the manufacturing process and 50% of the boats they manufacture use post- industrial recycled plastic. The company also installed specially designed air ducts that redirect the heat released by ovens during the molding process to heat their facility during the winter months.

Proud of its past… Excited about its future!

“We are proud to mark Pelican International’s 45th anniversary,” says Antoine Elie, Pelican’s co-owner and CEO. “Throughout our history, Pelican’s growth has been fueled by our commitment to innovation, investment in state of the art technology and a passion for providing compelling, quality products to all outdoor enthusiasts. We thank our clients and customers for their support over the years and look forward to many years of continued growth.”


About Pelican International

Founded in 1968 and based in Laval, Quebec, Pelican International is a leading manufacturer of kayaks, canoes, small fishing boats, pedal boats and outdoor winter toys. Pelican is the leading North American kayak manufacturer to use Twin Sheet Thermoforming (TST) technology to build the industry’s stiffest, strongest and most durable polyethylene boats. As a company that promotes enjoying the great outdoors, Pelican is committed to protecting our environment and recycles 99.5% of the excess material produced in their manufacturing process to make new products and has installed specially designed ducts that redirect heated air from their moulding ovens to heat their production facility in the winter. Learn more about Pelican International at



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