Ed D’Ascoli founded Xcel in 1982, working from the bedroom of his Sunset Beach house.
D’Ascoli found no shortage of inspiration from the world-class performances on display
at his doorstep; and the opportunity to create and to connect high-performance products
with the athletes who demanded them was irresistible. Xcel’s passionate focus on
product development would become the defining characteristic of the brand.
Developing wetsuits in Hawaii came naturally to D’Ascoli, having grown up surfing
New Jersey’s chilly Atlantic coasts. While temperate Hawaii waters rarely call for
any more than 2mm neoprene, Sunset Beach and other North Shore breaks are incredibly
challenging and demand world-class products for maximum performance.
Drawing upon his enthusiasm and experience helping establish Victory Wetsuits (Japan)
as an international brand, D’Ascoli quickly laid the foundations of a core wetsuit
company that would revolutionize the industry and push the cutting edge of material
and design development.
After penetrating the surfing market, Xcel rode its rapid growth into expanding
its offerings and found wider audiences across the ocean. Today, surf, dive, UV protection,
paddle, and wake combine to form the core of Xcel’s brand appeal. In 1990, D’Ascoli
moved Xcel from Sunset Beach into its present headquarters in Haleiwa. Soon after,
to better service Xcel retailers on the mainland, the brand opened a warehouse in
California. This West Coast location facilitated Xcel’s entry into the recreational
diving market. Using successful features and vast product knowledge of its successful
surf and military wetsuits, Xcel quickly raised the bar for dive wetsuit design.
Xcel’s reputation for exceptional product quality is a clear result of an unwavering
dedication to research, development, and design innovation. With tropical to cold-water
products for men, women, and youth, the brand stresses performance: maximum stretch
and durability, sealed-seam construction, and a fit that feels custom-made every
Xcel has been voted Surf Industry Manufacturer’s Association (SIMA) “Wetsuit of
the Year” by its industry peers three times (2007, 2008, 2010).