6. Ruth’s Chris Steak House: The High Stakes of International Expansion

Allen H. Kupetz, Ilan Alon

“Well, I was so lucky that I fell into something that I really, really love. And I think that if you ever go into business, you better find something you really love, because you spend so many hours with it ... it almost becomes your life.”

—Ruth Fertel, 1927–2002, Founder of Ruth’s Chris Steak House

In 2006, Ruth’s Chris Steak House (Ruth’s Chris) was fresh off a sizzling initial public offering (IPO). Dan Hannah, vice president for business development since June 2004, was responsible for the development of a new business strategy focused on continued growth of franchise and company-operated restaurants. He also oversaw franchisee relations. Now ...

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