With today’s fast-paced, on the go lifestyle so familiar to many of us, being able to have a healthy, protein-based shake after working out or as a pick me up while running errands can make or break energy levels and recovery from long workouts or just a long day. After years of being friends and work out buddies while in college at SDSU, Kevin Gelfand and Martin Reiman noticed a void within the fast but healthy food options on campus and they sought to fill it. In 2011, they opened the first location of Shake Smart on campus at SDSU – the University’s first student-owned and run shops. Since then, the company has continued to grow, and was recently selected and featured as one of Inc.’s 30 under 30 entrepreneurs along with Forbes 30 under 30 selection for 2019. Shake Smart offers a variety of food options from healthy shakes to whole wheat wraps and acai bowls, while providing vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free choices. In addition to the health-focus, Shake Smart is committed to offering their foods at an affordable price, so all menu items range in price from $3 to $7.
Since its start in 2011, Shake Smart has grown quickly to 13 locations across California, Texas, Oregon, Arizona, Florida and Virginia. Most of these locations are on college campuses, but Shake Smart also opened a location at UTC Mall in La Jolla. Shake Smart’s vision is to open 20 stores by 2020, and they are well on their way. This vision is supported not only by the company’s founders but by their team of over 200 employees across the country. To fuel this growth, Shake Smart utilizes advancements in technology to make it faster, easier and more intuitive for people to order. Last year, Shake Smart launched a proprietary self-order system, allowing for quick, customized orders to be placed and allowing for a simple re-order process. Shake Smart also introduced a mobile app which not only makes ordering easy, but which gives people $5 off for every $55 they spend.
The culture of Shake Smart is one in which ongoing growth and development is prioritized. The founders strive to inspire personal and professional growth through their publication of a monthly internal newsletter. The newsletter features personal insights from valuable lessons learned along the founders’ own journeys, designed to guide and inspire their team. Many employees have found a career path with Shake Smart, working their way up from being in-store to being a member of the executive team. Employees not only work together, but volunteer together and take part in a fun team-building event each year. All of these aspects equate to a strong, growing culture, team, and business, with big plans for the future. To learn more about Shake Smart and to view its menu and locations, visit www.shakesmart.com.