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Trying to stay afloat: Charlotte-area pool companies adapt as business dives (access required)

By Sam Boykin In July 2009, Simon Spiers, owner of Pool by Design, walked into his office in south Charlotte, fired his four employees and then went on a monthlong vacation to his native England. “I have a golden rule: I don’t borrow money to pay people,” Spiers said. “And it got to the point where I had no work left. There was just nothing to do.” Spiers and his wife, Jo, who is also his business partner, are an example of how the national swimming pool industry has dried up over the past few years. And the Charlotte area has not been immune.

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