Jack Sprats Restaurant

Babson Professor Bill Bygrave, Case Director

Mark Hellman and Dan D'Heilly, Case Writers

Arthur M. Blank Center for Entrepreneurship

© Babson College, 1997.


Jack Sprat's Restaurant is a case about Chris Harami's quest to start a high-potential restaurant chain. It should be positioned early in a new ventures course. Chris is a would-be entrepreneur in the restaurant industry who believes he has found an untapped niche: fat-free food. He has ambitions to build a national chain with the potential to have an initial public offering. It allows us to explore what it takes to build a high-potential restaurant that can expand rapidly and go public. This case presents an opportunity to ask students to do some library research. For example, students can research some restaurant chains that came into prominence and had initial public offerings in recent years such as Outback Steakhouse and Boston Chicken. What are the key components for their success? How does Jack Sprat's pro-forma income statement compare with other restaurants? (Students can find industry numbers from a variety of sources, such as Robert Morris Reports.) This type of library research will help students when they write their own business plans later in the semester. The case is best used in courses with a focus on searching for an opportunity, pre-start-up, shaping an opportunity, quick service restaurants, developing a healthy food menu, family business, financing, and careers.

Location of the company: Massachusetts

Year(s) spanned by the case: 1994 through 1995

Industry segment(s): Quick service restaurant with healthy food

Stage of the company: Pre-launch

Age of the entrepreneur(s): 30s


A 24-minute DVD is available for this case. It is a presentation to Babson MBA students by the case principal, Chris Harami. Please place video orders through ecch.

Teaching Notes

A four page case teaching package, written by Bill Bygrave, is available for this case. The teaching package includes strategies for case presentation, key concepts, solutions to the assignment questions in the case, and suggestions for the most effective ways to work this case into a course.