Berkley in Australia is committed to delivering fishing product that is tailored for the Australian angler. Extensive research and development is conducted by the Australian product team spearheaded by Berkley product head honcho John Bell.
John Bell’s passion, knowledge and experience about fishing is extensive to say the least. A passion that started at a young age catching flathead in Port Phillip Bay became an obsession in his teens with high speed spinning from the stones high on the agenda.
John entered the fishing industry in 1973 at the Compleat Angler in Melbourne as a rod builder making fly rods. His passion and knowledge for saltwater sport fishing saw him expand the shop from a fly focus to include saltwater fishing.
A move to the Compleat Angler in Sydney working with fishing legend Wayne Hanstedt saw industry opportunities open up and John moved to Penn Fenwick Australia as a rod production manager working with game fishing legend Peter Goadby.
More tackle store experience followed with stints at Pro Am Sports Dee Why making custom rods for local and overseas anglers, Bohm Bait and Tackle and iconic tackle shop Harbord Tackle Supply where he worked for 10 years.
For the last 16 years John has been with Purefishing, with time spent on the roads of Northern NSW as a sales rep before moving into product development with Berkley Australia. These were exciting times as Berkley took the Australian fishing scene by storm with innovative products such as Fireline, PowerBait and Gulp. A self confessed softbait fanatic, John Bell’s personal innovations list includes Berkley Dropshot rods, Australian Gulp colours such as the chicken and prawn variations, Gulp Crabby, Nemesis, Swimmo and Squid Vicious shapes, the list goes on.
Being fishing obsessed, living, breathing and working fishing since his teens John has amassed a huge knowledge base of all things fishing with experience in a vast amount of styles and locations. His fishing bucket list is considerably shorter than most with Grander Marlin, Tuna off the rocks, Snapper on plastics, GT’s on poppers, tournament breaming, meter barra and many more already ticked! Rest assured that when you use a Berkley product it has been selected for use for Aussie anglers by Aussie anglers.
Adam Royter has been involved in the fishing industry for 25 years and in that time he has immersed himself in everything it has to offer. From humble beginnings working part time for the Compleat Angler in Ringwood, he has built his reputation from the ground up starting from the thirst for fishing knowledge and the ability to talk to people.
Adam will be the first to tell you that understanding fish is the key to catching lots of them and with this intimate understanding the need to find more exciting ways to catch them came about. It wasn’t long before Adam turned his sights to fly fishing and to the personal challenges that represented. Continuing to work in the fishing retail industry allowed Adam to not only explore the various arts of angling, but to envelop himself in every facet of fly fishing from casting to fly tying.
In keeping with the true spirit of the game, Adam continued to diversify and try different elements of angling, ranging from yellow fin tuna fishing on the south coast of NSW, to trips off shore at Cato Reef to tangle Dog Tooth and GT’s – all before he was 18! But fly fishing was still the mainstay of his angling life so, living in Melbourne and having so many good trout waters to fish, it was an easy and fulfilling fix for the young angler.
Cars, girls and fishing soon controlled his every movement and the fishing trips became more and more extravagant in the years that followed – hiking in the western Plateaus of Tassie was a favourite mixed in with trips to Argentina, New Zealand and Fiji – Adam had soon done more kilometres in the air than on the road!
Adam’s constant drive for improvement saw him begin to practice all forms of casting, including baitcaster and threadline and was soon afterwards casting in tournaments for prize money. Between 1998 and 2005 he had won 27 titles and over $10,000 cash which at the time, not bad for a total of 54 minutes of casting! It was also around this time that Adam established his Total Casting Tuition casting school and started writing for various fishing magazines.
Wanting more out of his quickly expanding career Adam decided to leave the retail tackle trade to work as a full time fishing guide, writer and casting instructor. While this was happening he was taking on other rolls such as DVD presenter and guest speaker for Pure Fishing, whilst also acquiring a position with channel 9 as a presenter on the ‘Post Cards’ series.
Adam soon got a taste for being on the small screen and was eager to do more and more. In the next few years he was to be involved in shows such as ‘Rex Hunt’s Fishing Adventures’, ‘FishNet TV’, ‘Hooked’, ‘Hook Line & Sinker’ and of course ‘AFC’. The Australian Fishing Championships was perhaps the most fun for the excitable ‘Mad Dog’ – as he was soon to be known. First appearing on the show as a competetive angler and then being relegated and coming back as a presenter. Working with talents such as Steve Starling, Daryl Beattie and Carl Jocumsen was a huge privilege for Adam, and the show a great feather in his cap.
Having almost all of his friends in the fishing industry leads him back to retail every now and again, more recently he worked for his good mate Lee Rayner at Fishing Fever in Victoria. Being surrounded by so many lures once again, is what spurred on the creation of the Berkley 3B range of lures and the development of new techniques and tackle to fish hard bodied lures. This was a breath of fresh air for Adam as he had been the face of Berkley Gulp for many years.
Over the years Adam Royter has tried to deliver fishing education to the masses with a slice good-will and humour, and a generous dollop of skill. He continues this today in the form of DVD’s, seminars, online TV segments and TV programs, as well as writing for magazines and for blogs. He is also found conducting these elements in other countries such as New Zealand and Africa.
These days you’ll find the Mad Dog hard at work punching out a new technique in a fishing mag, designing a new lure for his range of Berkley 3B Hard Body Lures, building a one of a kind fishing rod, or hearing his voice on national radio with co-host Daryl Beattie, Sunday mornings on The Weekender fishing show…or out on the water trying to catch a fish or two.
There is never a dull moment in Adam Royter’s life – but then again, there never has been!
Like most people in the fishing tackle industry, Matt Fraser is a self confessed fishing addict. He caught the fishing bug as a kid on a creek bank, bobbing for yellowbelly. His passion grew as he fished the rivers and beaches of the Gold and Sunshine Coasts on his school holidays, where he learnt the basics of catching bait, then targeted bream, whiting and flathead.
Once he was old enough to get a licence, he bought a car and boat, and his fishing opportunities opened up considerably. He spent many weekends on Somerset, Boondooma and Bjelke Petersen Dams, as they first boomed, with newly stocked bass and golden perch. As the years progressed, Matt was at the forefront of the impoundment bass and barra techniques as they evolved. His exploits were well documented in his Dam Hot DVDs, which were groundbreaking at the time.
Matt became involved with ANSA in its hay-day, and he enjoyed line class fishing, tagging and the fun and rivalry of interclub competitions. Progressing to the salt, he became obsessed with mulloway in winter and mangrove jacks in summer, with a mix of flathead, bream and whiting fishing in between.
Whilst predominantly based in South East Queensland, Matt did a two year stint in Darwin, where he picked up the barra bug, and consequently spent countless hours on the Rivers and Billabongs of the Territory, chasing barra with lures and fly. Not long after, he spent five months in Bougainville, just south of the Solomon Islands, where he got into some serious offshore sports fishing for Wahoo, GTs and a variety of Mackerels and Tunas.
An accomplished tournament angler, Matt has competed successfully at the top level of ANSA Interclub comps, Classic Events, and ABT Bream, Bass and Barra events. A former Flathead Classic Champion Angler, Barra World Record Holder, and ABT Bream Grand Final Champion, Matt has tasted success in tournament angling, but also confessed to plenty of ‘donuts’ along the way. He enjoys tournament angling for the mateship, the challenge, and because he believes it is the quickest way to learn more about a species or how to catch them in a particular location.
Matt started in the Fishing Tackle Industry in 2002. As the soft plastic revolution took off in Australia, alongside the ABT’s Bream and Bass Tournament Scene, Matt saw an opening in the market for better quality jigheads made to suit Australian species and soft plastic techniques – hence Nitro Jigheads was born.
Whilst fishing alongside anglers at the top level of the sport, Matt was able to gain a first-hand insight into what worked or what needed to be developed in regards to specialised jigheads for a large range of applications. Nitro Jigheads quickly became the benchmark of quality tournament jigheads and racked up dozens of tournament victories.
In 2006, Matt teamed up with Pure Fishing, and the Nitro Jigheads brand expanded greatly in distribution and exposure throughout Australia. Matt continues his fulltime role with Pure Fishing, developing and refining the Nitro Jighead range, along with the MF range and Bigeye Blades.
Matt’s passion for fishing, and thirst for fishing knowledge continues to grow. He is continually pushing the boundaries of fishing tackle concepts, and designing jigs and lures to catch Australian species. Matt’s attention to detail in every application and commitment to excellence is what makes his products world class.
Sign-up to our regular newsletter. Keep up-to-date with the latest product and find out how to win some great stuff.