The SBDC assisted this entrepreneur with the roadmap he needed to start his business, expand to two cities and create 12 jobs.
Jason Kuska, an experienced event planner and promoter, launched a new business, Nastivie Entertainment, which specializes in providing VIP tours to nightclubs, drink specials and more for an exclusive price. The concept was born when Kuska, who had previously done promotional events for radio stations, started working at a hostel in Hollywood.
“We had a lot of international travelers, and they always wanted to go out to local bars and nightclubs,” he explains. “We’d organize small groups to go out on the weekend — that’s how I got to know all the club managers.” Eventually, Kuska began advertising the events to the general public. AS the business began to grow in 2009, Kuska quit his job to continue to grow his business full-time.
Although Kuska had done well promoting the club crawls while working at the hostel in the past, running a business on his own was a new challenge. “I needed some direction,” he said, so he visited the Small Business Development Center hosted by El Camino College.
Kuska took a business planning course at the SBDC and began to work with business advisor, Daniel Hancuff, who provided advice on business formation and employee contracts as well as Becki Walker who gave him ideas for growth. Most of all though, the SBDC gave Kuska the confidence to start his own business.
When Nasstive Entertainment first launched, a typical night’s event included 15 to 20 people. Today, events generally average 100 people per night. In addition to the regular Friday and Saturday night club crawls, the company now hosts holiday club crawls and promotes its own branded events at various venues.
In 2012, Nasstive Entertainment expanded into San Diego and added a new manager for the region in addition to an already outstanding staff of 11 at its Los Angeles location.
Plans include expanding to additional cities, as well as maintaining the quality of the club crawls to stay ahead of competitors that have opened up and copied the company’s formula for success. Say Kuska, “We want to stand apart as being the best.”