Marugame Udon to launch in London in early 2021

30 June 2020

Marugame Udon, the world’s leading udon noodles and tempura restaurant chain, will launch in London early next year after the formation of a new joint venture between Toridoll Holdings Corporation and Capdesia Group Limited. Marugame Udon currently has over 800 stores in Japan and a further 250 across Asia, the USA and Russia. The London site will be the first in Europe.

Marugame Udon (Europe) Limited will become the master franchisee for the region and the new London restaurant, for which a location is soon to be confirmed, will be followed by an ambitious rollout plan involving a combination of both owned and franchise operations in the UK and Europe, working in partnership with local multi-unit/brand operators. The new company will be headed by Keith Bird, a highly experienced restaurant and hospitality industry executive and one of Capdesia’s Operating Partners.

Takaya Awata, Founder and President of Toridoll said: “I'm delighted to work with Capdesia by setting up our joint venture company in the UK. We are looking forward to bringing Marugame Udon to Europe and for people in Europe to enjoy our Udon noodles and Tempura. We would like to develop the Marugame Udon brand all over Europe by combining the experience we have cultivated over the years with Capdesia's strong sector expertise and network. We also hope that this relationship will be a stepping stone for the development of other Toridoll brands, as we continue to make progress toward our goal of reaching 6,000 restaurants worldwide.”

Keith Bird said: “Marugame Udon is dedicated to providing delicious, authentic Japanese udon noodles that taste exactly the way they’ve been served in Japan for hundreds of years. Their chefs cook fresh, handmade noodles and complementary tempura options in open kitchens in front of customers every day, all in keeping with traditional Japanese Omotenashi hospitality. What we also know is that Japanese food has gone mainstream in the UK over the past couple of decades. We feel the market is now ready to embrace a more authentic and specialised offer but at a very affordable price point - essentially a fast-casual offer, in terms of quality of food and experience, but closer to QSR prices.”

Abe Matamoros, Co-founder and Managing Director at Capdesia added: "We're very excited to embark on this new venture with Awata san and his team. The Marugame Udon brand has become one of the most exciting growth concepts in the Asian category today and it’s not often one gets to partner with the clear leader in the category. We look forward to a long and fruitful relationship to the benefit of consumers, employees and shareholders."

Toridoll Holdings Corporation is the creation of entrepreneur Takaya Awata who started his first restaurant in Kakogawa, Japan, back in 1985. Today, Toridoll, a public company listed on the Tokyo stock exchange, has annual system revenues of GBP 1.2 billion and a portfolio of over 1,700 restaurants across 30 brands and 40 countries including Shoryu and Wok to Walk in Europe.

Capdesia is a European private equity firm with offices in London and Brussels which focuses exclusively on the food service sector. Capdesia provides creative capital and unparalleled industry expertise to the next generation of category-leading QSR, fast casual and casual dining restaurant chains and related businesses, in support of acquisitions, restructurings and domestic/international expansion, including facilitating the launch of international brands across Europe.

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