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Maritime Bus celebrates fifth year in business

['Passengers board one of the Maritime Bus vehicles in Truro on Saturday morning. At one point, there were three buses parked outside the Via Rail station on the Esplanade, which is now also serving as a bus terminal. The new service replaces Acadian Lines Bus, which used to have a depot on Willow Street. For story, see Page 3. LYNN CURWIN - Special to the Truro Daily News']
Passengers board one of the Maritime Bus vehicles in Truro, N.S. in this file photo. -File

Five years ago, Mike Cassidy saw a need in the community and jumped into action.

Acadian Bus Lines had announced it would be leaving the region on Nov. 30, 2012, after losing $12 million during an eight-year period.

With no real business plan Cassidy and staff took over the responsibility the next day on Dec. 1, 2012, under a new name, Maritime Bus, with one thought in mind: “Our region needs a passenger and parcel bus service, and we are the ones to deliver it,” Cassidy said. “Being passionate and naïve allows you the feeling of confidence to never accept something can’t be done.”

Travelling 10,000 kilometres a day throughout the Maritimes has been challenging, but Cassidy said he has no regrets.

The transportation business can be very fragile with low margins accompanied with capital-intensive debt loads. Cassidy said he understands the importance of management and having a fully diversified company but gives all the credit to a loyal customer following and a dedicated and supportive employee team for keeping the company in business.

And Cassidy has no plans to slow down.

“In another five years, on our 10th anniversary, we will still be saying that we have no regrets in doing what we do for our Maritime communities,” he said.

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