Restaurant Founder Hits $2m+ Revenue, Doubling Locations

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In Episode #387, Nathan interviews Regina Pradham, restaurant owner in Austin, Texas. Regina was set to start grad school when she realized her life was meant to go in a different direction. She started her first restaurant in Austin and now has five restaurant locations that are continuing to grow.

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Famous 5:

  • Favorite Book? – The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People
  • What CEO do you follow? — Sheryl Sandberg
  • Favorite online tool? — LogMeIn
  • Do you get 8 hours of sleep? — Yes.
  • If you could let your 20 year old self know one thing, what would it be? — Don’t worry too much to have everything laid out.

Time Stamped Show Notes:

  • 01:15 – Nathan introduces Regina
  • 01:35 – Her restaurant Tarka Indian Kitchen
  • 02:00 – Now they have five locations
  • 02:10 – A goal to have ten locations
  • 02:20 – How she got in the restaurant industry
    • 02:50 – Tarka is cooked-to-order, quick casual Indian food
    • 03:20 – First restaurant experience was in 1998
  • 03:40 – Why people start restaurants
    • 04:05 – A difficult business
    • 04:30 – “There are much easier ways to make money.”
    • 04:45 – How to Run a Franchise – Cody Bradstreet
  • 05:00 – Graduated with an editorial degree
  • 05:40 – Her and her husband bought a building in Austin
  • 06:10 – How they raised money for the building
    • 07:00 – Took out stock in Microsoft
    • 07:30 – Would she recommend the same thing to her kids?
  • 08:00 – They weren’t taken seriously to buy or rent
  • 08:30 – Clay Pit
    • 08:50 – Sold for bottom-line valuation
    • 09:20 – Margins
    • 09:35 – Restaurant and the real estate
  • 10:00 – First-year revenue was above $1 million
    • 10:15 – Price point and location
  • 10:25 – The metrics to find a good restaurant location
    • 10:45 – A Facebook post
    • 11:05 – Looking for deals
  • 11:25 – Average price for a dish is $7-$10
  • 12:00 – Good margin
  • 12:20 – Labor is 32%
  • 12:30 – Rent
  • 13:00 – The breakdown of costs
  • 13:20 – How to decide where to open
  • 14:00 – How to “fake it till you make it”
  • 15:00 – Follow her at tarkaindiankitchen.com
  • 17:15 — The Famous Five

3 Key Points:

  1. Don’t worry about straying from your life plan.
  2. Start a restaurant if you have a passion for the industry.
  3. Research locations where your business will be the most successful.

Resources Mentioned:

  • Host Gator – The site Nathan uses to buy his domain names and hosting for cheapest price possible.
  • Freshbooks – The site Nathan uses to manage his invoices and accounts.
  • Leadpages  – The drag and drop tool Nathan uses to quickly create his webinar landing pages which convert at 35%+
  • Audible – Nathan uses Audible when he’s driving from Austin to San Antonio (1.5 hour drive) to listen to audio books.
  • LogMeIn – How Regina keeps track of the numbers for all her restaurant locations