When Kanitha Matoury, Air Force veteran, started Spice Monkey, a restaurant and bar in Oakland, she followed her passion for food and her desire to have a bigger impact in her community. Since it opened doors in 2008, Spice Monkey has grown to be a truly community-focused business, living their mission by operating in an ethical and sustainable way while becoming more lucrative to support professional growth for their employees and more products for their customers.
“In 2015, Kanitha began working on a new project next door, Howden Market. The market-deli-cafe offers produce, coffee, prepared foods, deli goods, organic groceries, and more. The doors to Howden Market opened in January 2016. Between both businesses, Kanitha now employs 40 workers.
When Kanitha was ready for a loan to help make Howden Market a reality, she came to Main Street Launch. ‘The loan gave me peace of mind because I had access to more cash. Since this was not my first loan, I was prepared for the process,’ reflects Kanitha. ‘Working with Scott [Lewis, CFO] was smooth – he knows everything.’”