Marisa Nuñez, Marisa Hair, Long Island City, NY

Javier Zamora

Sushi Kong

Miami, FL

“We love what we do, and we are very grateful to Ascendus for allowing us to serve and create valuable products for our beautiful city, Miami”

How Javier Zamora Fused Two Cultures and Created a New Food Experience


Javier was sitting at a small café in Paris when he looked across the street and saw a beautiful sushi restaurant. It was small but well decorated. It looked classy, cozy, and inviting. He realized this is what he wanted and decided to bring a sushi restaurant to his home country, Venezuela.

Javier came from a city where all the street food is handmade. It’s the best in the country and there is an extra flavor to everything there. These were the ideologies he wanted to incorporate into his sushi restaurant.

He opened his first restaurant in Venezuela, and it was a hit. Over the next 10 years he opened chains all over Venezuela. But Javier had further goals of expansion, he wanted to expand to the United States and become a recognized franchise there. He took a big risk and moved to Miami.


The Struggles and Rewards of Moving to Miami

His first year in Miami was his hardest year.  He knew he was creating something beautiful and valuable, but he didn’t know how to get people to trust in his company and his product. He didn’t have a network in Miami or contacts that could refer him to vendors and wholesalers. He had to build up his reputation from scratch. Another challenge was that although he had a chain of restaurants in Venezuela, Javier was not able to use the same name as his chain in the United States because it was already taken. He would need to create an entirely new branding experience, as well as scrub away the remnants of the restaurant he bought in Miami.

He found Ascendus in 2020, pre-covid, and took out a $25,000 loan to make the necessary changes to his restaurant to make it his own. He rebranded, bought new equipment, and used the funds towards working capital. Through making changes to the restaurant, Javier was able to make better deals with wholesalers and save costs on his supplies. These changes allowed him to transform the restaurant into the social media icon it is today, with over 60,000 combined social media followers. Finally, others saw the same beauty and value Javier did.

The Future of Sushi Kong

Six months ago, Javier took out another loan with Ascendus. He received $100,000 from the SOAR fund with the goal of expanding his reach and bringing Sushi Kong to a wider audience. He used his loan to strengthen his delivery system, open ghost kitchens, renew equipment, upgrade his technology, and transform the inside of his restaurant. “Ascendus is a game changer for our story.” Through these changes, Javier hopes that he can achieve his goal of becoming a recognized franchise in the USA, and that it will lead him to becoming a local brand that is present throughout the city and eventually in all main cities in the USA.  He has his sights on expanding to NYC next.  “Ascendus is the company that has believed in us the most since the beginning of our relationship. We are happy to have knocked on your door and I am sure that absolutely all of our achievements as a company, and our franchises to come, will be hand in hand with you.”

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