CEO of surfing brand Quiksilver missing off French coast

Search ongoing for surfing brand boss after empty boat found on French beach

The French coastguard on Tuesday searched for Pierre Agnes, the chief executive of USA surfwear retailer Boardriders Inc, after his 36-foot (10.97 m) sailboat was found washed up on the country's Atlantic coast. Three helicopters and two boats have been sent out in search of the 54-year-old.

News reports said Agnes, 54, went fishing early Tuesday and went missing later that day when his empty boat washed ashore near Hossegor, 100 miles south of Bordeaux and 25 miles north of Biarritz, in hard waters and foggy conditions.

French coastguards are searching for the head of a leading surfing equipment company after his boat was found washed ashore in south-western France.

"An air and sea search operation is underway", the Landes prefecture said in a statement.

Rescue services were unable to say if the Frenchman had been alone.

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Surf legend Kelly Slater posted a tribute to Mr Agnes on Wednesday, saying he is "praying for a miracle" he is found alive.

The Frencman, who joined the company almost 30 years ago, has always been based at Quiksilver's European headquarters in Saint-Jean-de-Luz, just south of Biarritz.

Agnes recently oversaw a deal that brought Quiksilver together with rival surf brand Billabong under the Boardriders umbrella.

Quiksilver is a well-known surf-wear company founded in Australia near the shores of Torquay.



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