Often businesses open and soon close because of the wrong location, unsupportive economy or the destructive results of a hurricane, among other reasons. Quite a few businesses though, manage to ride the roller-coaster of the challenges thrown at them. Dive Abaco, a tourist oriented operation, has been in business for 35 years, and is still going stronger than ever, in spite of a sluggish economy.
Created in 1978 by a US Navy diver, the late Logan “Skeet” Lachance, Dive Abaco, located on the premises of the Conch Inn, had served the needs of scuba divers for 13 years. Its present owner, Mr. Keith Rogers, bought the business from Mr. Lachance in 1991.
Mr. Rogers, at the time President of the Ajax Scuba Club, in Ajax, Ontario, was on a diving trip in Marsh Harbour in 1990 when he found out that Dive Abaco was for sale. Tempted by the great weather and the beauty of the sea, he made his offer.
For 22 years, Mr. Rogers has catered to tourists coming to Abaco in search of sea adventures, be it by taking experienced divers to his favorite dive sites, island hopping, underwater photography, snorkeling, or training and certifying new recruits to the sport.
As successful as it is, Dive Abaco had to face quite a few challenges over the years, starting with the ups and down of the local economy, the lack of skilled personnel and the destruction of three major hurricanes.
In 1999, Keith Rogers lost his boat to Hurricane Floyd and it took over two years for the insurance to settle the cost of the boat. In 2004, the shop that was then located at the edge of the water was completely destroyed by Hurricanes Frances and Jeanne. It was closed for six months and subsequently relocated near the Conch Inn parking lot.
Over the years, the new owner expanded the inventory of the shop, adding souvenirs and gift items made locally to a full array of diving equipment for rent.
Mr. Rogers, who is the diving instructor, is qualified to teach a few specialty certifications recognized by PADI.
The services he offers are flexible, ranging from diving to island tours, private boat charters or sunset cruises. For a few years, Melinda Rogers, a resident of Florida, has served as eminence grise to the business, taking care of the marketing by organizing hotel packages and controlling the shop inventory.
The business has a website and reservations can be made locally at 242 367 2787 or internationally at 800 247 5338.