King Culture does well by doing good!
Bank ON Your Banker
Located at 76 North Stygler Road in Gahanna, this modern-concept barber studio prides itself on the motto, “Do well by doing good.” King Culture’s owners, Jermaine Henson Sr. and John Hughes III, wanted to provide clients with something more than the traditional barbershop experience. In doing so, they realized their commitment was not only to an exceptional client experience, but also to their staff and community, especially during an unprecedented time in our country’s history.
Opening their doors in 2019, Jermaine and John are not only business partners, but also cousins by marriage. Their respect for each other, commitment to the business plan and devotion to building a future is evident in their casual professionalism as they interact with each other while exuding confidence and loyalty at the same time.
Both men are not currently barbers, but interest in the trade started for John when Jermaine took him to a local barbershop at eight years old, and then progressed for both men as they cut their own hair and that of their friends. They combined this initial talent with meticulous business skills, technology awareness, knowledge of the market and a smart choice on studio location. The result was a trendy, welcoming environment for a barbershop where all ages, races and genders of customers can feel comfortable and relaxed. Technological advances enhanced the experience with an online booking system that provides appointment updates and allows barber selection.
The partners had a few years under their belts before the COVID-19 state mandate response of early 2020 stifled their business. Fortunately, they were financially prepared to tackle the closure that completely halted their studio operation for a short period of time. In the downtime, they paid their barbers and kept their business afloat with their online store consisting of t-shirts, hair products and beard essentials. Additionally, they spent time assessing their banking strategy and reviewing their financial statements. They were with a “big bank” and really didn’t believe there would be a difference between what they had and a local, community bank – they had a bank and it seemed to work at the time.
“There’s a difference,” shared Jermaine. “I guess I didn’t realize that because I had always known about personal banking versus commercial banking – but with commercial banking, it definitely feels like the local community banks have a better commercial banking process and acumen. It is definitely a different experience. What we dealt with at our bigger bank was not comparable to just being able to talk to our commercial relationship manager, Kelly Law.”
Their studio happens to be directly across from one of Heartland Bank’s branch locations, Stygler Road - a natural choice for them for convenience and to support local. Alison Lathey, branch manager at the time, and Kelly helped the owners make a few financial adjustments. They moved their entire relationship to Heartland and with declining interest rates in response to the struggling economy, they could take advantage of refinancing options for a decrease in expenses on their balance sheet.
Talking with their banker became an asset to these partners. They appreciated the knowledge and business advice that their bankers passed on to them. To live their philanthropy – doing well by doing good – they realized they could leverage the benefits attained from their banking relationship to boost their community and their bottom line. If you are looking for a relationship to bank ON, visit any one of our branch locations or contact our Client Services department to start your Heartland relationship today!