KCS Cleaning & Staffing Solutions Corp.
Edward Feliciano got a job in 1989, during his first year of college, to help pay for tuition. Edward began working as a dishwasher at La Posada, a restaurant overlooking the ocean at the Condado Plaza Hotel & Casino; one of Puerto Rico’s many luxury hotels.
From dishwasher, Edward was soon promoted to busboy. A year later, he moved on to the 5 star El San Juan Hotel as the first male waiter in the hotel’s piano lounge, and later bartender. In 1997, Edward accepted a job as Assistant General Manager at the Tropimar Convention Center, and later became General Manager. Edward noticed that maintenance and cleaning procedures were not carried out during night shifts as they should have been, making him realize the need for specialized services so hotels can comply with federal and state health and sanitation regulations.
“In the summer of 2001, while working as Tropimar’s General Manager, every day after work I would roll up my shirt-sleeves, take off my tie, and pick up the phone to pitch cleaning and maintenance services to every hotel kitchen and restaurant I could think of,” Edward says. Upon obtaining his first client, one of the largest hotels on the Island, Edward recruited a couple of friends, bought a pickup truck, and rented some industrial equipment. With that, Kitchen Cleaning Services was born.
As he saw the opportunity to continue expanding to various industry areas, in 2006 Edward paid a visit to the Puerto Rico Small Business and Technology Development Center, where he received counseling and technical assistance to further improve his company’s daily operations. At that time, Kitchen Cleaning Services employed around about 400 people and the SBTDC helped Edward in revising the company’s profile, developing a business plan, developing internal systems for accounts receivable management, improving the company flowchart, and designing a Standard Operating Procedure in addition to providing continuous counseling.
The entrepreneur also brought in a business partner, José de León, who had many years of experience in operations, allowing Edward more time to focus on expanding sales. This diversification led to the re-birth of the company into KCS Cleaning & Staffing Solutions, becoming one of Puerto Rico’s leading cleaning specialist contractors and employee service providers. Today, KCS Cleaning & Staffing Solutions has grown into a 1200 employee enterprise, with dozens of big accounts under contract in addition to seasonal clients. Besides commercial kitchen cleaning and maintenance, KCS works on special projects such as exhaust system cleaning, pressure washing, and marble restoration. Today, the business generates over $3 million in annual sales.