Chris Richter

MBA, Class of 2004

"I really enjoyed the professors."

Chris Richter's business is going to the dogs, and he couldn't be happier. Chris turned a business plan that he developed while earning his M.B.A. at Southern New Hampshire University into Sam's Treats, a manufacturer and distributor of gourmet dog biscuits.

"I really enjoyed the professors like Dr. Nick Nugent and instructor Tom McGrevey," says Chris. "So many faculty were integral in sparking my interest in becoming an entrepreneur. Earning my degree in one year also allowed me to start on something that I was really passionate about."

The delectable doggie treats come in beef, garlic-flax seed, peanut butter and garlic cheese flavors. Sam's Treats can be found at 36 statewide locations and Chris is working to create a biscuit specific to the German market.

Chris believed a 100% organic dog treat for his dachshund, Pretzel, was far superior to the nutritionally poor biscuits he was finding in most supermarkets. So he launched his business by turning his home into a makeshift canine kitchen and an adjacent barn on his property into the production center.

Before long his doggie treats were the cat's meow. Chris began receiving requests from international distributors and turned his homespun creation into an overseas sensation.

"There's no question that learning how to export a product takes a lot of skill and know-how," says Chris, who now is working on a master's degree in international business at SNHU. "Identifying which are the best countries to sell to and what the business environments are like in each country is the key to making this business work."