Originally published Sunday, June 3, 2018 at 06:49a.m.

Roy Stiles, raised on California’s ocean shores, has felt the pull of the waves and the beauty of the sea his entire life. When he turned 10 his father bought him his first reef aquarium and the origin for his business, Neptune’s Paradise, was born.

Roy and his wife, Jessica, and their family moved to Arizona to be closer to Jessica’s father. Roy, who wanted to maintain his personal aquariums, found that there was a definite need in this area for aquariums, ponds, coral, fish and other quality supplies.

After his time in the Coast Guard, and working in several aquarium and pond businesses in the Huntington Beach area, becoming an experienced expert, Roy decided that this move was the perfect opportunity to open their own business as a sideline to their regular employment. Jessica, who shares his interest in marine biology, provides backup and assistance for Roy.

Now that Neptune’s Paradise has been in business for over two years the Stiles decided that it was time to expand their presence. Although they have clients from Prescott to Flagstaff and throughout the Verde Valley, the next goal was to increase their marketing and look for a brick-and-mortar location. Currently, Roy has converted his garage to house his aquariums where he grows his own coral and keeps a supply of fish, although he doesn’t do much breeding.

Once the Stiles decided to make Neptune’s Paradise a full-time business, they contacted SCORE to help increase sales. They were assigned to Jerry Jones, a certified SCORE mentor, who is working with them; building a business plan and determining accurate costs.

They have now set sales goals with steps to achieve and are working on their marketing via co-mentoring with a SCORE social medial expert. This will permit them to grow slowly with their current home-based location while business continues to increase.

In addition to aquariums, Neptune’s Paradise also provides custom designed ponds. Roy works with both private homes and businesses. He explained that his clientele are people who want to create an aura of peacefulness, either in their homes or in their businesses, such as medical practitioners, where it is important that calmness prevails.

In addition to designing and establishing aquariums and ponds, Roy provides regular service and maintenance. One of things offered is an Aquarium Office Leasing Plan, through which a client can lease a 28-gallon salt water aquarium that includes fish, snails, crabs, shrimp, food and bi-weekly maintenance.

Pond placements are determined by the owners’ land size, the native ground support, electricity supply and what the client desires for an outdoor pond. Samples of some of the ponds and aquariums designed by NeptunesParadise.com can be found on the website.

Roy says that for him and his family as well as his clients, aquariums and ponds provide “a sense of tranquility and joy.”

His stock is carefully selected; each warrantied to be healthy, disease and stress free. His live fish, crabs, snails and other sea creatures are acclimated before being placed with a client.

Because his suppliers require that, in order to sell online, he must also have a retail space; this is the next goal Roy and Jerry will be pursuing after the marketing and promotion campaign. For information, call 562-450-8169 or visit NeptunesParadise.com.

To get help start or grow your business and to be matched with your own SCORE mentor call 928-778-7438 email: scoreoffice@scorenaz.org or go to www.northernarizona.score.org.

Ginni Trask Comstock is a SCORE communications contractor.