If you have been a college student, you can probably recall how difficult it was to find healthy places to eat. McDonald’s was most likely around the corner, but if you eat healthy like Nathaniel Ru and his friends you already know that finding healthy food isn’t easy to do.
Having found a small 560 square foot space, Ru and his friends decided to take the plunge and jump into creating that healthy food experience. The mission was to keep it healthy, fun, and easy.
Within six years, the eatery Ru and his friends started expanded into a 21 location farm to table style restaurant. The building these young men purchased was owned by the landlord of the apartment they lived in. Initially ,the landlord was not interested in what Ru and his friends wanted to do.
Calling the landlord every day for a month finally caused her to listen to the plan. After a face-to-face meeting, the landlord suggested that they gather a team of professionals to help them turn this idea into a reality. The mission was now to put together a solid plan with design, funding, and all other necessary pieces of the puzzle of starting their business. Learn more about Nathaniel Ru: https://angel.co/nathaniel-ru and https://about.me/nathanielru
The concept was to keep the food healthy, and ultimately the communities were the locations stand today are thrilled that the local farmers and purveyors used are all local. This means building a real sense of community and taking pride in what they are doing. Ru recently said at a conference he spoke at-“From the beginning the company was more than just about salads. Sweetgreen was started with a deeper purpose.”
Ru, hailing from New York, is a proud entrepreneur and graduate with a degree in finance from Georgetown University. Ru and his friends founded the Sweetgreen company in 2007, during a time when many either suffered from failed businesses due to the economy or entrepreneurs gave up. Ru and his friends were committed to their dream of providing a healthy and fun place to dine, while encouraging the use of all local and fresh ingredients.
The two friends that stood by Ru to bring the restaurant chain to life are Nicolas Jammet and Jonathan Neman. Ru’s restaurant has been deemed as a “thought leader” in food service, and serves mostly regional, all natural dishes in every location.