Quave to QWAVE- The Story Behind the Journey
For centuries now, The Quave family has lived, fished and surfed on the salty waters of the Gulf, from the coast of Mississippi to the Florida Panhandle - and it’s safe to say that they all have saltwater in their veins.
The Quave family are first descendants of Juan de Cuevas - the name Quave came about when the family left the island and one group changed their name to Quave (back then most people couldn’t read or write too well so Cuevas came out Quave) - LOL. Juan de Cuevas owned, lived AND died on Cat Island off the Mississippi Gulf Coast. So, naturally anything to do with the water was passed down for generations, specifically fishing, crabbing, sailing and water sports.
Jay Quave, CEO of Gulf Coast Panama Jack, bought his first surfboard at the age of 12...and the rest is history.
Jay surfing the pass
Jay with a massive tuna he caught in Canada
The love for “all-things-saltwater” was passed down to Jay from his dad, whose dad passed it down from his dad, and so on. Jay wanted to keep the tradition going by sharing his love of the water with his daughters. He wanted to teach his two girls all about fishing, crabbing, boating and of course, surfing.
Molly and Jay
Olivia and Jay
With over 30 years of Gulf Coast Panama Jack (GCPJ), his distribution company of Panama Jack products and beach supplies, Jay had the ability to create an affordable, quality brand for his customers. Thus, the lifestyle brand QWAVE was born.
Standup paddle boards (SUPs) had not yet made their very popular debut on the Florida Panhandle. Around 2008, Jay purchased a Hawaiian SUP at Surf Expo, the first to the market. Every time he went out on the board, people wanted to know what “the board with the paddle” was. Then, the light bulb went off - as SUP’s became more popular, Jay traveled to China and found a factory that made SUP’s and performance body boards.
In 2015, QWAVE was first created to provide affordable standup paddle boards and performance body boards to beach service rental companies and cost-conscious consumers. The play on the brand name comes from the family’s last name Quave (pronounced Qu-ave or like Qwave) which in fact worked out perfectly for the brand, representing the passion Quave’s have for catching the perfect wave. As the products began to make their way across pools, beaches and lakes, some pronounced the name as Q-WAVE which works for us too! It’s fun to keep our consumers interested. Hey, as long as they are talking about it, right?
With the success of the water boards, GCPJ is expanding the QWAVE brand in several different categories. From boards and sandals, to hats and t-shirts; from games and duffel bags, to water bottles and coolers, we will have you covered from head to toe! Not only is QWAVE an affordable brand for all ages, it’s also a lifestyle that can be shared with generations to come.
This is just the beginning for the QWAVE brand and we want YOU to become part of our QWAVE family.
We’ll meet you in the water.
Jay, Olivia and Molly in Costa Rica