Wilmingtonbiz logo
Print
Retail

Tides Changing For Locally Based Spearfishing Distributor

By Christina Haley O'Neal, posted Jun 8, 2017
Maverick America has a opened a new facility on Greenfield Street and is working on new line of North Carolina-manufactured spear guns. (Photo courtesy of Maverick America)
Maverick America, a Wilmington-based national distribution company for spearfishing, has opened a second location near downtown Wilmington, to begin production of an all-North Carolina manufactured spear gun.
 
The company has expanded from its small location in the Dry Corp building off Military Cutoff Road to its  newly renovated 7,500-square-foot building at 1316 S. Fifth St., said Mark Laboccetta, founding partner of Maverick America.
 
Maverick America was founded in 2015 by Laboccetta and California partner Petros Yiannikouros. In the first year, it had more than $1 million in revenue, Laboccetta said. The company sells nine different brands focused on the spearfishing market, from apparel to parts.

Tides are now changing for the company, as it extends the business into manufacturing its own product lines.
 
“We have a 100-page catalog of all the finest brands … Most of our products are geared toward the free dive and spearfishing enthusiast,” Laboccetta said. “The vision here is to be the largest distribution company for spearfishing in the country."
 
Laboccetta found his love for spearfishing early in life, and has set 11 world records in the sport. His passion has translated into his 26 years of experience in the industry.
 
Laboccetta was in the spear gun manufacturing industry for more than a decade, before his family’s business Technosport was bought out by a public corporation in 2013. After that, he and his wife, Lydia, who also holds a world record in the sport, decided to “start from scratch” in Wilmington.

Maverick America still has its retail outlet off Military Cutoff Road. But with the extreme sport of spearfishing growing in popularity, Mark Laboccetta said they soon realized one building was not going to afford the company room for expansion.

The second location allows the company to grow, while also being a part of the effort to revitalize the Greenfield Lake area, Mark Laboccetta said.
 
“The city has plans for revitalizing this area," he said. "I feel like we are right in the center of that."
 
The company's new space includes a showroom and distribution room. Currently, Mark Laboccetta is also working on installing a CNC shop in the back of the building to manufacture the company's new top-of-line spear gun.

The new spear guns (left) are designed in Hawaii by spear gun designer Darrian Yokooji, and manufactured and assembled in Wilmington. The guns range from $900 to $1,100 each.
 
Once the new facility is up and running, the custom spear guns will take about three months to produce. The first “full line” of spear guns has already pre-sold, Mark Laboccetta said.

He said that Maverick America's spear gun manufacturing facility is just the first phase of the company's expansion. Next, the company seeks to further its brand in the wetsuit market.

“The direction that we are taking with the spear guns is the same that we are taking with other products made over seas,” Mark Laboccetta said. “Specifically, when you think about neoprene … most of that always comes from overseas. But our phase two of the expansion in North Carolina-made production, is to make wetsuits here.”

Mark Laboccetta aims to start wetsuit production in the next six months, but the 1,000 square feet of space left inside his current building may not have enough room for additional equipment. He's looking into nearby buildings.

“Spearfishing is growing, and I know this business. So I’m taking the opportunity to make this stuff in the U.S. again," Mark Laboccetta said.

The company currently has six employees, and expects to hire two more by July.

Join The Discussion

Similar Stories

Book On Business

Bob2017

The 2017 WilmingtonBiz: Book on Business is an annual publication showcasing the Wilmington region as a center of business.

Order Your Copy Today!
Print Only
$24.95 - Qty
Print + Excel File
$79.95 - Qty

In The Current Issue

Tour To Highlight Affordable Housing

To boost awareness about what affordable housing means in the Wilmington area, the Cape Fear Housing Coalition is hosting its first Real Households of New Hanover County Tour to showcase affordable homes in the area.

Area Options Abound For Active Seniors

As the members of the baby boomer generation seek out ways to keep fit and enjoy their retirement years, the number and variety of fitness o...

NHRMC Proposes Fourth CT Scanner

The N.C. Division of Health Service Regulation recently gave conditional approval for New Hanover Regional Medical Center to acquire an addi...

Ico topnews Editor's Picks

Gov. Cooper Vetos Bill That Includes Funding On GenX

Christina Haley O'Neal - About 12 hours ago

UNCW Professor Awarded $1.5M Grant To Research Future Of Coastal Communities

Cece Nunn - About 13 hours ago

Cape Fear Serpentarium Reopens After Repairs

Christina Haley O'Neal - Sep 20, 2017

Il Forno Pizzeria Now Open At The Pointe At Barclay

Jessica Maurer - Sep 20, 2017 Trending News
Consulting

Leggett PLLC

Leggett, PLLC specializes in business valuation and forensic accounting services. Elaine has more than 20 years of experience and has served clients in a variety of industries and types of engagement ...more

Ico trending Trending News

Ico newsinimages News in Pictures

Have a tip, pitch or guest column?  Send us a tip.

Gallery Galleries

Video Videos

Power Breakfast: Coach C.B. McGrath - June 2017
Wilmington's Most Intriguing People of 2016

Register to Continue Seeing Wilmington's Best Business Coverage!


There are three ways to register for free.

Sign in with LinkedIn, Facebook or create an account:



Already registered? Login here.

Your free registration includes:

  • Access to 10 articles per month on WilmingtonBiz.com
  • Email updates to stay informed on local business news
  • A mobile optimized website
  • Advanced notification of Business Journal events
  • Management of your digital and print subscriptions
Laptop iphone ipad