Nathaniel Ru’s Unique Take on Restaurant Ownership

Sweetgreen is a high end salad chain that was first established in Washington D.C. The entire company was built from ground up by a trio of Georgetown students fresh off of graduation. The company was established almost a decade ago by Nathaniel Ru and since then they have been focused on becoming more than just a restaurant.

The goal of Sweetgreen is to become a high end salad chain that offers back to the community, their co-workers, and their customers. Let’s look at what Sweetgreen has done in order to change the paradigm of restaurant management.

The Sweetgreen movement originates out in America’s northeast and it has steadily grown across the nation ever since. The funniest and most interesting thing about Sweetgreen is that they very nearly never even got the chance to get off of the ground. Freshly graduated from Georgetown, Nathaniel Ru knew that he needed to reach out and find a location for his first restaurant. This led him to make a phone call to an old tavern down on M Street in downtown Washington, D.C.

The landlord heard that Ru was a kid and wasn’t even remotely interested in meeting up with them. Read more: Nathaniel Ru Blazes a Trail in The Height Food Industry | Affiliate Dork and Nathaniel Ru | Crunchbase

Still, Ru persisted by calling the landlord every day until he secured a meeting. The meeting went well and Ru and his team immediately brought in a bunch of architects and backers in order to get to work. Ru says,”we took three and a half weeks and found some backers and an architect.”

Sweetgreen has never wanted to be just a restaurant, they wanted to be something different. So, Sweetgreen got into the business of being more than just a restaurant and instead focus on being part of the movement. The Sweetgreen team was inspired by the work that Steve Jobs had done at Apple.

They wanted to bring in the community by sourcing their ingredients from local organic farms and they also got into the routine of posting events through Sweetgreen. The Sweetgreen music festival ended up being a company changing event as it really showed what Nathaniel Ru and his team were capable of offering.

Nathaniel Ru recently moved their headquarters to Los Angeles but that doesn’t mean they’ve forgotten their roots. Ru occasionally shuts down the corporate office in order to head out team members to go work a day to day in the actual restaurants around the country.

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *