Nicole and Tom Mauriello reside in Berkeley Heights with their three young daughters. The last thing you may think about this nice suburban family is that they founded and are successfully running three small businesses in addition to their household!
Nicole, a native of Trinidad & Tobago, has both hands in the fire (pun intended) making homemade specialty ethnic soups through her company, Sancoche Soups, LLC. (www.sancochesoups.com) and selling branded promotional items under Business Boosters, LLC., generating creative product promotion ideas to boost the business of her clients. Nicole’s soups are typically sold out as soon as they are made. Nicole’s aim is to educate people’s palates and bring cultures together via soup. Nicole has expanded her business and now offers cooking classes and camps for kids where she teaches the foundations of French cooking.
Her promotional products company, Business Boosters (www.businessboosters.io) serves corporate clients, helping develop unique merchandise ideas that promote their brands on a cost effective basis. Nicole and Tom both have bachelor of fine arts degrees in graphic design so the creative process is a natural fit for both of them. Nicole contends that “in addition to my husband’s support, Dave and the Kean University SBDC team has helped me see much further down the road and gain an understanding of what each of my businesses has to offer in the marketplace and how I should best organize my time and resources to ensure I stay on the path to success.”
Tom is the owner of ThinkScreen, LLC., a digital web development and branding agency with an impressive client base which includes some very recognizable corporations (www.thinkscreen.is). ThinkScreen produces fully functional web applications for business to business and business to consumer audiences. Tom opened his business in 1999 and credits his businesses longevity to continuous exploration of new technologies that can provide his customers an edge. Tom and his team’s ability to understand their client’s need and then create cost effective solutions at the highest, state of the art quality, wins them business over their competition, even when that competition includes internal development teams. Of the relationship with the SBDC, Tom reflects: “I have known about the SBDC for some time, but never the value the SBDC relationship was going to be able to return to my business. If I had, I certainly would have opened these doors a lot sooner.”
Both wife and husband are also intricately involved with each other’s businesses, which must make for some interesting conversation around the dinner table, as their children learn about the trials and tribulations of entrepreneurship first hand from two “serial entrepreneurs”. This type of round table discussion spans a couple of generations where Tom’s father and Nicole’s mother are also entrepreneurs in their own right. Tom and Nicole’s networking extends beyond the typical chambers of commerce, meet ups and social media, onto the soccer field and school parking lot, where everyone is a potential client. Their sincere and endless passion for their businesses helps make them successful and client focused.
The SBDC at Kean University has been working with Nicole and Tom for a while on all aspects of their businesses from management, supply chain, product production, business relationships, collections, finance, cash flow, dealing with managing partners relationships… you name it. Sometimes together, other times individually, there is always a business issue in need of resolution.