It is almost unbelievable that three years ago, the only Georgetown Hoyas that had any idea what Sweetgreen stood for were Jonathan Neman, Nathaniel Ru and Nicolas Jammet. The trio got into a discussion about the lack of healthy food alternatives on campus and that is how the business idea came to life.
There were three main reasons for the developments that took place. First, the three students had a shared passion for food that was healthy. The second was the fact that they had a problem that was affecting all three of them, and they needed a lasting solution to it. Third, the trio needed to innovate something that did not exist before. That is how the idea of sweet greens was incubated.
They came up with a business plan. Even though the three of them come from families whose success came from entrepreneurship, this did not prepare them for the journey that lay ahead. They realized that there was a lot they did not know about the food industry in particular.
However, in an interesting turn of events, it is this lack of experience that helped them look at the food industry with the fresh set of eyes that was needed. They realized that to be successful, the community surrounding them would have to infuse its culture into the brand to give it an identity.
They decided to take practical lessons from the things they were learning in the classroom and apply them to their business. Thus, they created a value-driven brand that moved from being a little business that was only covering Georgetown into a community with a following of more than 20,000 children. Jammet claims that people do not invest in healthy food because they do not really understand what it is all about.
After a few years of selling the initial business, the Sweetgreen trio realized that the trend was beginning to get a cool reception. They came up with the ideal of infusing music and culture to the venture and called it Sweetlife. The new venture helped them sell their original products mush better than they were doing at the start.
About Nathaniel RU
Nathaniel is one of the three Hoyas who founded and act as principals to the Sweetgreen venture. They offer healthy alternatives to the food found in the school delis and snack bars. He has been featured in the Forbes 30 under 30 list for his business acumen. He was a finance student at Georgetown and is also in charge of the SWTLF ventures.