How Nathaniel Ru and Friends Started Sweetgreen Healthy Restaurants

Nathaniel Ru and his college mates had trouble finding a healthy and fun eatery during their graduation ceremony. The friends.

Nathaniel Ru and his college mates had trouble finding a healthy and fun eatery during their graduation ceremony. The friends took it upon themselves to set up a restaurant to cater to the student population at Georgetown University in D.C. Six years later Nathaniel and his buddies owned one of the most sought out after eatery joint at Georgetown.

Speaking in an interview at Knowledge. Wharton, Nathaniel Ru recalls the negotiations they had with the landlord of their first ever hotel premises. That business meeting with their first landlord marked the first time Nathaniel Ru wore a full suit. Ru and his friends didn’t know much about how to run businesses back then, but they were more than ready to take on any challenges in their quest.

The tavern that would eventually house the first restaurant, Sweetgreen was in a dilapidated state when Nathaniel Ru and his university friends took over. The young investors had to cough up finances to hire an architect to spruce up the rundown tavern into a fine college restaurant.

The commitment and resolve of the founding partners saw the outlet open up new stores in other American universities based in cities like New York, Washington, Philadelphia, and Boston. Learn more about Nathaniel Ru:

Sweetgreen’s digital marketing head reminds us that this outlet is all about sumptuous healthy foods and snacks and music festivals. Sweetgreen is a key contributor to an annual musical festival held in Georgetown. The restaurant, and indeed the company, is founded on a simple philosophy of win, win, win. Nathaniel Ru and his colleagues are credited with building one of the most sustainable restaurant chains in the nation. Read more: Nathaniel Ru | Dynamic Dialogues

The founder’s decision to incorporate music into their business venture arose in April 2009. Ru and his partners had just scored an incredible deal on a new location at the heart of Washington D.C. The excellent location was, however, not enough to draw in customers at the new establishment. That’s when the founders of Sweetgreen decided to play live music on the weekends in a bid to attract revelers. The decision paid off brilliantly as dozens of customers started trickling into the eatery to enjoy the music and have a healthy snack bite.

The new restaurant by Nathaniel Ru and his friends accepted a variety of payments from their clients. The quaint restaurant accepted payments via phone, cash or by credit cards. On top of earning loyalty points for every dollar spent at Sweetgreen, customers get free professional yoga lessons and gym sessions at the facility.

About Nathaniel Ru

Nathaniel Ru is a serial entrepreneur and investor from Boston, MA. Ru graduated from Georgetown with a top honors finance degree in 2007. Nathaniel owns a chain of health foods restaurants operating under the brand name, Sweetgreen. Ru runs a hotel empire with over 25 profitable restaurants in the US.

This article was written by forvets

One thought on “How Nathaniel Ru and Friends Started Sweetgreen Healthy Restaurants”

  1. The story of Nathaniel Ru is a fascinating one for anyone who feels lost in the cooperate machinery of society. Following his model, anyone can startup a business and learn how to run it on the fly if one pays good attention to the running of the business. Take a look at for a description of his methods.

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