IAAPI names Pradeep Sharma as new president

The Indian Association of Amusement Parks and Industries (IAAPI) has appointed Pradeep Sharma as the association’s new president.

Founded in 1999, IAAPI is a non-government, not-for-profit, industry-led and industry-managed organisation representing the interests of amusement parks, theme parks, water parks and family entertainment centers in India.

Sharma has been a part of IAAPI for 17 years, most recently serving as Vice President. He was active as chairman of the safety committee, contributing towards IAAPA’s safety standard harmonization meetings. He also had a leading role in drafting and the adoption of India’s first safety standard for amusement rides (IS 15475 – Amusement Rides Safety) for the Bureau of Indian Standards on behalf of IAAPI.

Over the past 20 years Sharma has worked with international suppliers, lead operations for EsselWorld/Water Kingdom and, for the last 12 years, has run his own company, Bombay Amusement.

In 2013, he was appointed Vice President of Business Development for leading global water park designer and manufacturer WhiteWater, with a brief to help develop the water park market in India.

A highlight for Sharma was the opening of India’s first international water park, Wet N Joy, in Lonavala in 2016.  Later this year, WhiteWater will install India’s first ever Shoot The Chute water ride at Magic Mountain and will supply all of the new rides for the renovation and expansion of Shanku’s Water Park Resort in Ahmedabad.

Pradeep Sharma – Indian industry thriving

“This is a great honour for me as this is an industry I have lived and breathed for over 20 years and I look forward to continuing to play a part in helping this sector continue to grow in India. Over the last few years, there has been an influx of iconic new projects and, as the Indian economy continues to grow at an exponential rate, I envision the need for leisure to increase further. In my role as President, I will be responsible for supporting our 350+ members working across government, policy makers, investors, suppliers, manufacturers, and operators to ensure the amusement industry continues to thrive and embrace the latest and safest global attractions and standards,” said Sharma.

“Pradeep’s knowledge of the market is second to none and the respect and comradery he has amongst his peers, colleagues, and fellow industry experts illustrates that there is no one more befitting this appointment. India has been a symbolic market for WhiteWater since our first project there more than 25 years ago and it is an absolute pleasure and honour to have Pradeep at the helm of our team. He has some big shoes to fill when you consider the profile of IAAPI’s previous presidents, but I have no doubt he will make a huge contribution to the continued evolution of the amusement and water park industry in India,” said Mike Rigby, WhiteWater’s Regional Vice President of the Middle East and India.

WhiteWater’s President and CEO, Geoff Chutter, added, “This is a great accomplishment reflecting Pradeep’s commitment to the industry. We are incredibly proud of all that he has achieved at WhiteWater and IAAPI. This showcases the global reach of our business and our commitment to this ever-growing market.”