In 1999, John Georges went into the tugboat business. It was unchartered territory for him. Though he had a successful wholesale distribution company and a thriving video poker business, offshore maritime was a totally new ballgame.

But Georges is not one to shy from a challenge and, besides, maritime seemed like an appropriate industry for a successful Greek businessman to tackle.

“All Greeks are in the shipping business,” New Orleans consultant and Georges family friend Danae Columbus recalls him saying at the time.