In his 30s, Scotty Wise has created the kind of successful restaurant chain many entrepreneurs chase for years and never achieve.
Wise, a Muncie native, will tell you it all started with a dream, a degree from Ball State, and a lot of hard work.
A 1995 graduate with a bachelor’s degree in marketing and public relations, Wise took a loan out shortly after he left Ball State with the goal of bringing a popular pub to the Village in the form of Scotty’s Brewhouse, with its featured Backyard Burger.
With a constant flow of customers soon coming to his Muncie pub, Wise opened a second Scotty’s location in Bloomington
, Indiana, in 2001. Success there soon followed, and more pubs bearing the Scotty’s Brewhouse name were established in West Lafayette
, the north side of Indianapolis
and—in 2009—a location in downtown Indianapolis.
Today Wise oversees a company that employs more than 800 people. After the great success in the Indianapolis area, Wise opened Scotty's Lakehouse, a sister restaurant to the Brewhouse, at Geist reservoir in March 2010. In the midst of Broad Ripple, Wise decided to open a new brewing company in January 2011; it's named Thr3e Wise Men Brewing Co. after himself and his two sons. By August 2011, all beer brewed by Wise's company will be distributed to all Brewhouse restaurants.
“As more people become familiar with our brand and the atmosphere they can expect at one of our Brewhouses, we want to keep building on that name,” Wise said.
His advice to other budding entrepreneurs with big dreams? Make the most of their college experience.
“I knew grades were important, but I also put myself in a lot of leadership positions while I was in school and networked with a lot of people,” said Wise, who joined a fraternity and other campus organizations such as the Homecoming Steering Committee during his time at Ball State.
“Getting involved the way I did was a great way for me to not only become a more well-rounded person, but it taught me how to work well with others in a leadership position – learn to lead, motivate and balance school, work and play,” he said.