In the "sink or swim" world of small businesses one local company seems to be holding its own.

You could say there's something a little fishy about EcoTech Marine's success story.

"Aquariums were always a hobby for the three of us growing up.. and we were able to turn that hobby into a passion in school and from that passion into a business," said Patrick Clasen, director of finance for EcoTech Marine.

Tim Marks and Justin Lawyer were friends in high school.

Patrick Clasen joined the team after meeting Marks at Lehigh University.

"We basically had the opportunity to be paid a stipend to do research and develop a pump for the aquarium industry, and what we came up with was the vortex propeller pump," Clasen said.

That pump put Ecotech on the map in 2003.

"We grew from initially three employees and right now we have 72 employees," Clasen said.

The company also started making its own circuit boards recently.

Clasen says it's an investment that allows the company to keep its prices down to reel in those costumers.

EcoTech Marine is in over 109 countries.

"The Lehigh Valley really creates kind of an incubator for small businesses here," Clasen said.