It may be a stretch to envision how a TV appliance store developed into a travel agency, and that from the travel agency was born an online personalized candy company, but that has been the trajectory of Kreation Specialties.
Based in South Plainfield, NJ, Kreation Specialties is owned and operated by Ray and Nancylee Komoski, who create personalized candy bar wrappers for birthdays and anniversaries, bar/bat mitzvahs and sweet 16 parties, first communions, confirmations, baptisms, birth announcements, graduations, weddings and bridal showers. Kreation Specialties can also custom-make products for hotel, business and corporate events.
“The biggest part of the business is candy wrappers for all occasions,” Ray Komoski said.
The Komoski family has been on the cutting edge for well over half a century. The original family business, a brick and mortar store called K&S TV, launched in 1952, at a time when many people didn’t even own a television yet. But they would, and K&S TV grew into a successful business that, a couple of decades later, expanded in 1972 to a Travel Agency in the TV and appliance store.
Another 20-plus years went by before the Komoskis shifted gears again and jumped on the Internet wave very, very early in the game.
“In 1994, we went on the Internet, closed our brick and mortar store, and started our own website,” Ray Komoski said. At the time, most Americans were not on the information highway, but, just as with the TV business more than 40 years before, the Komoski family got their early and saw the wave of the future. Within a couple of years, virtually everybody was on the World Wide Web.
“We did this back when it was a 28.8 (Kbps) dial-up connection,” he said.
When candy and candy wrapper business started, the Komoskis closed down the TV department but retained the travel business.
Although this type of start-up would seem tailor-made for a small business loan, in the case of the Komoskis, “We started everything on our own, with no loans, no financing, and learned the hard way,” Ray said. “We did our own site, with our own web design. It’s been a rough road.”
But that “rough road” smoothed out when Kreations Specialties was discovered by the “Al Roker on the Road” television series for a feature on the Komoskis’ company.
In 2003, Roker spent the day at the Komoskis’ home and their company was showcased on a special Christmas episode of the Food Network series. “It was such a wonderful experience with the production crew filming us for two days,” said Nancylee Komoski. “Food Network aired the Christmas special three years in a row, which was amazing.”
“We did everything from craft shows to church bazaars” to promote Kreation Specialities, Ray Komoski said.
The Komoskis have educated themselves on every aspect of the business right down to the importance of search engine optimization.
Kreation Specialties ships nationwide and accepts orders of all sizes. Orders are sent via UPS or USPS and, for warm-weather shipping, optional packaging complete with Styrofoam carton and ice gel packs is available.
“This is strictly an in-house business,” Ray Komoski said. “We accept credit cards and we are fully insured, but we do not do social media. We do direct mail, though.”
Kreation Specialties (www.kreationspecialties.com) stresses the importance, as well, of customer service that goes above and beyond the norm.
“We are constantly checking the tracking and email or calling our customers to let them know it has been delivered and where it was left,” Nancylee Komoski said.