Making Waves

Entrepreneurs partner with Bank of St. Francisville to launch marine contracting company

When he was in the 6th Grade, Pierre Part native Scott Settoon, Jr. won the school science contest with a 3D model and step-by-step explainer of oil field production. Today, with help from Bank of St. Francisville, Scott and his wife Michelle lead a fast-growing marine contracting company that delivers turnkey services to marine, oil field, industrial, and municipal clients.  

Scott says he can’t remember a time when he wasn’t fascinated by oil field production. His knowledge was sharpened by years of working for his family’s oil field contracting company.  

“I’ve been around this kind of work my whole life,” Scott said.  

After unsuccessfully attempting to buy the family business, Scott and Michelle ultimately decided the best way to realize their vision was to start their own company. In 2022, they turned to Bank of St. Francisville for help in growing their new start-up.

"We’d worked with a lot of different banks over the years, and it was very important to us to work with someone who would give us personal service and really understand what we’re trying to accomplish,” said Scott. “We found that in Bank of St. Francisville.”

The couple established a relationship with Bank of St. Francisville’s new Baton Rouge location. Last summer, Baton Rouge Vice President Whitney Boyd traveled to Pierre Part to meet the Settoons and tour their operations.  

“Scott and Michelle told me how they wanted to take their ideas for the business to the next level,” Whitney said. “Scott clearly had a lot of experience about the market and its growth potential.”

Now more than a year later, the Settoons’ White Water Contractors in Pierre Part has about 20 full-time employees and provides numerous turnkey services. From creating artificial reefs for coastal restoration to moving barges that support construction—and then providing that construction—the company provides seamless services to a range of clients. It has grown exponentially in its first year in business, Scott says.

“A lot of companies are either tugboat companies or construction companies, or are just doing pile driving, but we do it all,” Scott said. “That’s been the key to our success. People don’t want to deal with three or four different contactors. They want a turnkey price.”  

On a recent construction job for the Corps of Engineers, for example, White Water Construction was able to transport its own equipment down the coast to the job site, perform the construction and coordinate the logistics.  

“That’s why a lot of people call us to get their stuff done, because they know from start to finish, we’ll figure it out,” Michelle said.  
And the Bank of St. Francisville is never more than a cell phone call away.

“When you work with us, you’re getting personal service,” said Whitney. “No matter how big your loan is or how much money you have in the bank, you can always get someone on the phone.”  

Scott says he sees a lot of similarities between White Water Contractors and Bank of St. Francisville.  

“They operate like us in that they want to make things easy and personal for their customers, which is rare in such a fast-paced, hectic world,” said Scott. “We’re a perfect pair.”

To learn how small business financing from Bank of St. Francisville can fuel growth for your business, click HERE.

Published 11/27/2023

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