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    5 Replies Latest reply on Oct 19, 2007 7:49 PM by Lighthouse24

    Thinking about starting a new Scuba diving business

    ScubaDive Wayfarer

      It has been a lifelong dream of mine to open a Scuba diving company in Hawaii. I wanted to post to this forum to solicit any kind of advice from the community. I am in the process of doing my research. If you have started a business from scratch before, do you have any advice for a first timer? Thanks.
        • Re: Thinking about starting a new Scuba diving business
          midibuff Newbie
          Do a business plan including a detailed cash flow projection which will tell you what financing you will need to start and run the business. I recommend a 3 year projection. The business plan will give you focus on all the facets of starting and running a business: Financing, marketing, sales, promotion, facilities, costs, expenses, etc. The business plan will also help you to think through other areas of business like facilities, location and competition, licensing, personnel and management. Having a well thought out business plan and cash flow projection can help you to avoid a lot of the pit falls that you might otherwise experience if you don't have them.
          • Re: Thinking about starting a new Scuba diving business
            Business Mind Newbie

            Hello

            First contact my company. The Business Mind Consultants for a free evaluation and consultation. This is new world that your attempting to dominate and the first move is to get Professional Support.

            Mike Henry
            The Business Mind

            760-622-9132
            Mike@bzmind.com

            P.S I instruct business plan building with the San Diego learning annex and host the radio show "Excellence in Business". feel free to visit the site and learn more about my company.
            • Re: Thinking about starting a new Scuba diving business
              WEBillions Adventurer
              Do your homework. How many other Scuba diving businesses are their in your area? Can you get any information from another company (or perhaps estimate) about costs and income. Does the area need another business? Are people just lined up?

              Where and how would you advertise and how much will that cost you? What promotional deals can you provide to get people to come?

              Can you corner a niche market of scuba diving? Can you convince all of the fabulously rich people to dive with you so that you might be able to even charge more? Competition isn't where the money is.
              • Re: Thinking about starting a new Scuba diving business
                BullsEye Newbie
                Hi Scuba,

                WEBillions is right - you'll want to very carefully look over the competitors in the area and estimate how much business they're getting. If the market is being overserved in one area, you'll know it right away, before you open your shop and find customers are staying away in droves. Be sure to check several areas, just in case.

                Another angle -- while you're doing your survey, ask a few of the older guys running shops if they have considered selling their operation. It's amazingly easier to climb on board a moving vehicle than it is to build one from zero and push it up to speed. Buying (or buying into) an existing business gives you cash flow immediately and an existing customer base that you can concentrate on expanding.

                Charles
                • Re: Thinking about starting a new Scuba diving business
                  Lighthouse24 Ranger

                  I see that this is a relatively old, but still "unanswered" post. How is your planning going?

                  I've lived in Hawaii and did some diving while there. Serious divers have a favorite shop they do business with already, and you won't pull many of them away from their shop to yours. From that perspective, trying to partner up with or buy out a "retiring" owner is great advice from the previous post.

                  The non-serious divers are mostly tourists, and the shops that support them have agreements with tour companies and resorts. Hardly any business would come from marketing directly to customers unless you were offering a truly unique dive experience. The problem with that is the operators who make a living off tourism have a kind of surfer or street gang culture, and by that I mean a dive spot may be "public," but a particular shop or operator will treat it like it's their turf (or surf?) and things can get pretty nasty if a new operator tries to come in. In spite of how huge tourism is in Hawaii, it's not a business that seems to welcome new competitors with open arms. So again, working with an existing shop may be the best way to work your way in.

                  Give us an update when you can!