SUCCESS STORY FOR
Fusion Cuisine, Inc.
Fusion Cuisine, Inc. is a Kingsport casual dining restaurant serving a fresh and innovative combination of Tex-Mex, Italian, and American cuisine all in one place. Established by owners Jaime and Kathleen Joaquin who moved from Texas to the Tennessee Tri-Cities region to retire. When the pandemic struck, Jaime took the bold step to start his own restaurant business to provide more quality jobs for the community.
To become familiar with the local services and develop a business plan, Jaime reached out to the TSBDC KOSBE affiliate office. Through the help of the TSBDC, the Joaquin’s developed a business plan, two-year financial projections, and received one-on-one counseling through the TSBDC KOSBE Enriched Technical Assistance Program, focusing on three specific areas of need: host positions, back-of-house production, and new employee orientation. Additionally, TSBDC paired the clients with resource partners for marketing, web design, and custom food photography.
TSBDC encouraged the Joaquin’s to apply for the Outdoor Dining Enhancement Mini-Grant as part of the progression of Fusion Cuisine. Through the award of this grant, Fusion Cuisine expanded its seating with an outdoor dining area. The owners also completed a Tennessee Chamber Healthy Business Certification Program offered through the TSBDC KOSBE. Now, the restaurant is a staple in dining in the Tri-Cities area, adding over forty jobs and creating an environment where staff is as passionate about the restaurant’s success as the owner is and they feel like family. Jamie says, “We’re only as good as the people who work here. I train and invest in every team member, so they are equipped and empowered to service the community in any capacity with excellence. We are a family, Fusion is a place to learn, grow, and thrive.”
The Joaquin’s continue to remain in contact with their advisor Aundrea to discuss the future of the business, Jaime states, “I credit my business beginnings to all the guidance that TSBDC has given me. The success has been our hard work, but hard work needs guidance in navigating issues small business owners may not be familiar with. The TSBDC has been a wealth of information and resources.”
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