By Scott and Ann Springer
D.R. Imports At A Glance:
General Manager: Bruce Brande
Years In Business: 10
Location: Miami, Fla.
Number of Employees: 10
Flagship Product: Caribbean livestock
Website: currently under construction
If you want it, D.R. Imports says it carries it. This marine fish import and export company based in Miami, Fla., is renowned for its large selection of fish, invertebrates, and Caribbean live rock, says general manager Bruce Brande.
“We run the whole gamut of marine livestock,” Brande says. “We’re a one-stop-shop for marine livestock. It’s not only convenient—we also offer items that other companies don’t.”
D.R. Imports was founded 10 years ago by Bob Kelton, who has increased the company from a homegrown business to a global powerhouse. The company imports products from countries across the globe including Bali, Indonesia, the Dominican Republic and many others. Additionally, D.R. Imports exports livestock to five continents.
“[Kelton] used to work one day a week bringing fish in to sell,” Brande recalls. “He was at the right place at the right time. The offer came up and the company has just blossomed to where we are today in an 8,000-square-foot warehouse.”
Brande feels D.R. Imports has seen tremendous success in the past decade because it is one of the only companies in the United States that can import live rock and ricordia from Haiti. “These are very sought-after items,” he says. “The ricordia is a very colorful item, and it’s hardy and easy to keep.”
The market trend toward live reef tanks has assisted company sales, too. “The rock is the base of the whole aquarium,” Brande says. “Without the rock, the rest is kind of lost.”
Brande says D.R. Imports plans to grow steadily alongside the market trends and ride the wave of success. “This segment of the industry is growing and we have the product that consumers need,” Brande says. <HOME>
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