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Coral Collection is a huge advocate of coral farming. Corals are amazing animals that produce the largest living geological structures on earth, known as coral reefs. With the current technologies this hobby has developed, now anyone has the ability to grow these unique animals. Unfortunately, global warming, ocean acidification, pollution, overfishing and coastal development have seriously damaged the planet's coral reefs. Coral Collection believes if enough people take part to learn about these animals and how they live and thrive, these creatures can be saved whether it's in captivity or in their natural habitat. We recently sat down with co-owner Matt Chong to learn more about Coral Collection:
1. Tell us a little bit about your business? What makes it unique?
Coral Collection is the largest reef hobby store in south Orange County. It is a one stop shop for all reef needs. Coral Collection caters from beginners to individuals who have enjoyed the hobby for many years. Our highly personable staff is made up of effective communicators who take pride in providing excellent customer service, while trading personal experiences that foster long lasting relationships. There is nothing we can’t find. From dry goods, such as food or lighting fixtures, to live goods, including different types of fish or coral. Coral Collection also provides consultations and will set up, maintain, and/or tear down tank systems.
2. How did you get involved in your industry?
What started out as a hobby grew into a business opportunity selling tropical/exotic fish and coral. Not only do we sell fish and coral, in addition to many other products, but we educate customers before, during, and after they make decisions to ensure they get the most out of their purchases. We are fortunate that our hobby is our profession, and we continue to build that hobby from our interactions with customers.
3. How did you start your business?
As I previously mentioned, this began as a hobby. We started growing and maintaining coral in one of our garages’ and eventually began selling pieces directly out of there. We began saving earned profits with the hope that one day we could open a retail store. We saw the happiness coral farming brought to others and wanted to deliver it to customers personally. We opened our Coral Collection location in Fountain Valley in 2010, and moved to Lake Forest at the end of 2014. Coral Collection Lake Forest opened January 3, 2015.
4. Why did you choose to locate in Lake Forest?
We observed many of our customers were traveling from south Orange County to Fountain Valley, and we decided to check on the opportunities in the area. We decided on Lake Forest due to the surrounding freeways, various amenities, and well-established family-friendly community.
5. Any special promotions we can advertise?
Mention the Lake Forest Business Spotlight Article and we’ll take 20% off livestock. In addition, if you purchase a tank, you will receive free water for the reef/fish purchased.