Scottish adventurer looks towards international business expansion

David Scott, Sandbaggers founder. Pic by Leo Frances

A SCOTTISH adventurer who supported a group of celebrities on a gruelling desert trek for Sport Relief is expanding his international expeditions business.

David Scott took seven famous names across the Namib Desert in Namibia, southern Africa, for the BBC charity drive.

Now he has hired more staff and is expanding the number of countries he’s taking expeditions to as part of his Sandbaggers business.

David, from Newton Mearns, Glasgow, said: “We’re focussing on growing the business fairly dramatically over the next couple of years.

“We’re increasing the number of countries we’re taking expeditions to and broadening the types of experiences we can offer there.

“Until very recently I basically ran the business myself, but now have four staff, including a UK-based operations director and two full-time overseas managers, and also use a number of international contractors.”

Sandbaggers grew from David arranging a stage race across Mongolia’s Gobi Desert in 2004.

Since then he has staged multiple events across the Gobi and Namib Deserts, as well as jungle and extreme weather treks, and even an ice marathon race.

Now Sandbaggers is offering adventure trips in other stunning locations across the world, including Patagonia and Kamchatka, Russia.

David explained: “The business began with races across the Gobi Desert, but it has become apparent that there is a huge demand for other events and general expedition support or experiential adventure holidays.

“For instance, we’re now offering taimen fishing in remote Khuvsgul Aimag, which is close to the Russian border in Mongolia, and a 361km kayak journey the length of the Santa Cruz river in Argentina.”

The Coronavirus pandemic has impacted world travel, but David says bookings are still healthy and growing for 2021 and 2022.

“Obviously 2020 has been a challenging year because of travel restrictions caused by the Coronavirus pandemic, but early signs for 2021 are very positive – it’s looking like being our busiest ever year,” added David.

“We’re also getting bookings for 2022 so the future is looking bright.”

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