Eight years after graduating from Georgetown, three students created America’s sexiest startup. These students were not happy about the jobs that awaited them after graduation. This is what lead them to want to create their own business. They found that Georgetown was lacking in better food options. With that in mind, they started Sweetgreen which provides healthy farm-to-table salads.
They were able to fund their idea with the support of their family and friends. With their family connections, they were able to target some high-profile investors. One of their first investors was Joe Bastianich. Joe decided to invest in their idea because he believed in their passion and liked their business plan.
With this money, they were able to open their first restaurant in Georgetown in 2007. Over the years they have grown to include 31 restaurants nationwide and are projected to open 10 more in the next year. They were able to see so much growth because they disciplined and had a very detailed business plan. That paired with their winning idea is what drove them to greatness.
The atmosphere of their company is very different, and many label it as being a hipster. Their employee structure is also different from other companies. They are all about building and growing relationships within their company. This includes everyone from their farmers to their app developers.
Nathaniel Ru is one of the three students that created the idea of Sweetgreen. He currently works as the companies CEO. He got the entrepreneurial spirit from his family. Nathaniel dad’s started his own import/export business out of Los Angeles. So, he grew up watching his dad create his own business and not having to work for someone else. He claims that the entrepreneur enthusiasm was hardwired into his DNA.
Nathaniel met his other co-founders while they were all studying at Georgetown. He first met John in a freshmen Accounting class. They bonded quickly since they were both from LA and their love of music. He would always talk about business plans with John, which is what lead them to come up their Sweetgreen idea. After opening their second and having no customers the first day, Nathaniel believed that their business dream was done. But it was John that kept them together and said that they should focus their efforts towards marketing. They did this by passing out flyers and playing music every Saturday and Sunday. Their hard work has paid off.