Cal State LA Alum Shares Recipe for Nationwide Success
At a recent event at California State University, Los Angeles College of Business and Economics (Cal State LA CBE), CEO of Porto’s Bakery and Café Raul Porto Jr. discussed his family’s experience in developing one of the world’s largest retail bakeries. Cal State LA CBE’s Adjunct Instructor and Consultant for the Entrepreneurship Department, Barney Santos, introduced Porto.
Raul Jr.’s parents immigrated to the United States from Cuba in 1960 with little money, the hope of sharing the family’s recipes, and a big desire to succeed.
Rosa and Raul Porto Sr. rented a small shop in the Silver Lake neighborhood, where they planted the seed of the thriving business that exists today. Through the decades, Raul Jr. (a Cal State LA alum) and his sisters, Betty and Margaret, grew the company while maintaining the authenticity of their mother’s recipes.
At the event on November 5, 2015, Porto stressed the importance of high quality in the expansion of any business. He said, “Operating a business is like playing a sport, you always have to keep improving yourself to get to where you want. Now when we first started expanding Porto’s, a friend of mine told me we’ve hit on something that’s special, improve it, and don’t change it… We took that advice and over time we improved little things about the business without cheapening our brand. We don’t want to be a chain bakery because with chains you lose that personal connection with your customers.”
Porto’s ranked fifth in a recent peer restaurant review list of 100 similar businesses in the country.