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Matt Matros

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Matt Matros founded Protein Bar in 2009 with the goal of bringing healthy, great-tasting food to on-the-go customers. Growing up overweight and losing his father to a heart attack at a young age, Matt transformed through exercise and a protein-rich diet into a fit, healthy adult - losing 50 pounds along the way. Matt's commitment to giving customers the healthy, on-the-go choices they were looking for helped Protein Bar evolve and become what it is today.

With locations across the country, Protein Bar focuses on helping people everywhere live the healthy lifestyle they want to live through a balanced menu of blended drinks, wholesome quinoa bowls, salads, raw juices, and our signature Protein Bar-ritos. Protein Bar is open for breakfast, lunch, dinner, snack, and catering.

Mr. Matros is a Southern California native with an undergraduate degree from USC and an MBA from the Ross School of Business at University of Michigan.

Companies and Investments

Protein Bar (founder and CEO)

Lessons Learned

People make fun of me for this but I have my calendar that I keep on a piece of paper and every morning when I wake up I look at it and say, “What am I doing today?” I have my meetings this morning and by the end of the day things come up that you really didn’t plan for. Whether it’s a refrigerator breaking or a delivery guy calling off, no day really goes as planned.

I moved here in 2005 and I was selling cheese. Literally, I was a brand manager for Kraft Cheese. I knew that there was no place that served the kind of food that I wanted to eat so I liquidated all of my life savings, got some loans from the government and started my first store down by Willis Tower. It was open for about a year and then we added food to the menu and things took off.

On the day his first store opened:

It was the best day of my life. Actually, the day that was more amazing for me was the day before when we had our practice run. The funniest part was I had all of these recipes ready to go with menu boards printed and I had hired all these employees and then they started tasting the recipes and were like, “These are disgusting,” because they were all just mine and what I thought was good. So literally the day we opened we ripped down the menu boards and printed up new ones and that whole week before we opened we did things to make them more palatable.

On the greatest marketing and/or sales challenges in the start-up phase:

We don’t do much traditional advertising, but we do depend heavily on word of mouth and believe our best marketing is a good experience. This is also why we spend so much time in training our team members and store managers to ensure our customers always have a great experience when they come to The Protein Bar.

One of our greatest key learning’s when we first opened was a quick realization that if we are going to make it downtown we needed to expand our menu beyond protein shakes, and serve meals as well. People leave the office once a day, and that’s to eat lunch. When we added food, things took off pretty quickly.

On revenue generation:

We’ve been pretty lucky. I really wouldn’t do anything over again. We’ve made mistakes. And we learned from them. The only mistakes that are bad are when you don’t learn. We also recognized the value of hiring experienced people who would help us grow the brand.

On controlling expenses:

When forming a business you need to go in recognizing things take longer and are more expensive than you might presume. Plan and research as best as you can so no expense is a surprise.

On driving revenue and sales:

Listening to our customers and giving them what they want. We asked our customers a lot of questions about what they’re looking for when they make a choice about where to purchase their meals. What we heard; people are looking for healthier products. People have to find value in your product or service. Speak to them. Find out what they want and what you can change.

On general lessons:

Ask yourselves a couple of key questions: What makes you different from your competitors? What aren’t your customers buying so they can buy your product instead? Finally, don’t over plan or over analyze, keeping in mind “action over inaction” and “learning by doing” should be applied as on-going guidance.

Inspiring Quotes

Take care of your body. It’s the only place you have to go.

Jim Rohn

You’ve got to get up every morning with determination if you’re going to go to bed with satisfaction.

George Lorimer

To keep the body in good health is a duty…otherwise we shall not be able to keep our mind strong and clear.


In health there is freedom. Health is the first of all liberties.

Henri Frederic Amiel

Matt Matros's Quotes

We do healthy…healthier.

Matt Matros

Not all calories are created equally. Choose wisely.

Matt Matros

It’s not a diet. It’s not a phase. It’s a lifestyle change.

Matt Matros

If you don’t recognize an ingredient, your body won’t either.

Matt Matros

It’s Monday. Don’t forget to be awesome!

Matt Matros

Influential Books


Confucius, Vincent Van Gogh, Matt Matros’ Father, Francois La Rochefoucauld, Leigh Hunt.