Small Biz: Family-operated Dayton, Tenn., store offers discounted necessities

Small Biz: Family-operated Dayton, Tenn., store offers discounted necessities

June 4th, 2013 by Kimberly McMillian in Business Around the Region

Amanda McKeehan, co-owner of What Knot's discount store in Dayton, Tenn., sits on one of the children's motorized vehicles offered at the store she opened in mid-May with her father, Howard Fuller.

Name: What Knot's

Location: 4121 Rhea County Highway, Dayton, TN; (423) 326-7222

Hours of operation: Daily, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., except on Sundays

Products: Household cleaners and kitchen items, toys, keg coolers, television and computer stands, speakers and Blue-Ray players

Owners: Howard Fuller, 54, and daughter Amanda McKeehan, 30

Inspiration behind the name: "We're liable to have about everything," Fuller said, about offering items similar to what another discount store had carried, prior to its closing.

Startup investment: Fuller said that it cost at least $10,000 was needed for purchasing merchandise and initial set-up.

Prices: Items range from $ 1fingernail polish, up to $150 children's motorized vehicles, McKeehan said, and they "test everything before it goes out."

Target market: Both Fuller and McKeehan agree that their store has helped low- and moderate-income families buy necessities at an affordable price.

Biggest hurdle: Fuller said that the decision to retire from a local automotive manufacturer and open the store with his daughter was, in part, due to personal health concerns.. Now, he said, the challenges stem from keeping a stocked inventory, as opposed to working under another's leadership.

Lesson learned: After years of operating a fireworks business with her father, McKeehan said, "It's a big adventure for both of us."

Five-year goal: "We're hoping to open up two or three more in region within the next two years," depending upon available locations, said Fuller.

- Contact Kimberly McMillian is based in Rhea County. Contact her at