This review was first published by Booklist on April 1, 2016.
So you’ve started a business, now what? Ammirati seeks to answer this question in this sequel of sorts to the standard texts on the science of startups. In response, Ammirati offers a science of growth—a guide on how to scale your business once it’s successfully established. Why did Facebook beat Friendster? How did Tesla outdo Fisker? Why does McDonald’s boast over 35,000 locations worldwide, when White Castle has fewer than 500? Ammirati examines 26 well-known companies to discover what separates the success stories from the failures. He draws examples from diverse industries and isolates several variables: prerequisites for growth, catalysts for growth, and foundational elements to sustain it. An authority in the field of the startup economy, Ammirati teaches the subject at Carnegie Mellon and heads of the country’s most successful startup incubators, and it shows in the way his book is thoroughly researched. It’s also accessible, easy to read, and eye-opening. This is a necessary and welcome addition to the business canon.