For the Bastecki family, this week brings home the realities of new career choices – baking bread, slicing deli meats and prepping fresh sandwich toppings.
Chris Bastecki and sons Travis, Brad and Brett opened their first Jimmy John’s gourmet sandwich restaurant on Tuesday on Pleasant Hill Road near I-85.
As the father of six explained, some of the Bastecki children worked at other Jimmy John’s before the new store launched. But the three brothers leading the Gwinnett Place location became familiar with the popular subs while studying together at the University of Tennessee.
“When they graduated, they started looking at franchise opportunities,” Bastecki said. “We looked at 10 to 15 different models and really liked what Jimmy John’s had to offer.”
The father and sons are core investors in the business. Chris will work on the behind-the-scenes corporate details while the brothers handle the daily tasks of running the shop.
For Brad, Jimmy John’s is a departure from his previous employment focus of sales in the electronics industry. But to finally realize a dream of working alongside his family, the venture is worth the effort.
“For me it was worth a pay cut because this is going to be more rewarding,” Brad said. “Hopefully timing is on your side, but all you can do is go with your gut. In the long run, I’m hopeful this will be something special.”
Chris is maintaining his corporate job while his sons focus on building up the franchises. At some point, all the Basteckis – including mom – will spend some time on the clock.
The Alpharetta family already has designs on opening a second location in the greater Lawrenceville area soon. Future sites will likely include the Mall of Georgia, Snellville and Suwanee, among others.
“The idea is to grow to six to 10 stores, and we’re going to be focused on the Gwinnett County area,” Chris said. “If you have a great location and you offer a great product and service, I think you can still be very successful right now. I don’t feel like we’re taking any risk by doing this.”
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