LED Small Business Resources aid Quality First Marine with business hurdles
Christina and Capt. Darryl Couvillion pulled together the little savings they had and a small amount of credit to purchase their first commercial charter vessel in 2005, and launched Quality First Marine. Today, Quality First Marine works in marine construction and operates and manages tugboats, crew boats, and barges for clients in the oil and gas, marine construction, governmental, emergency response and coastal restoration industries. The team is built of mariners with more than 60 years of combined knowledge and experience in both shallow and deep water in the Gulf of Mexico and surrounding waters.
As the company advanced, it required some additional resources to help facilitate growth, including support with sales and marketing, managing the growth of the company, operational processes, goal setting and documentation for hiring and training processes. Quality First Marine reached out to LED, and soon found the resources it needed by taking advantage of the Economic Gardening Initiative and CEO Roundtables.
CEO Roundtable and Economic Gardening foster growth for Quality First Marine
Through participation in the CEO Roundtable, Quality First Marine had access to monthly peer-to-peer support and learning facilitated by a moderator and expert speakers that were brought in to address particular business topics. As a result of their participation in the CEO Roundtable, Quality First Marine was able to develop a marketing and sales plan with weekly, monthly and annual sales goal metrics in order to be disciplined and intentional in gaining new business. They were also able to extend that tangible goal setting and planning to operational processes and financial tracking. With Economic Gardening, the company received research and guidance with online marketing including Search Engine Optimization and market research, particularly with identifying potential clients and where to seek them.
“The assistance received through Economic Gardening and CEO Roundtables was instrumental in helping Quality First Marine to grow as a company,” said Christina Couvillion, President of First Quality Marine. “I recommend other business owners take the time to invest in themselves and their business by seizing the opportunity to participate.”
Both programs aided Quality First Marine in fostering and transitioning into an accelerated stage of growth for the company. Since initially participating in Economic Gardening and CEO Roundtables, Quality First Marine’s revenues have grown by 457 percent and they have created 15 new jobs. Revenues continue to steadily grow with continued projections for growth and additional job creation in the future.