Obsessed with Chinese food? Want to start a new business venture? In this article we look at the top Asian food franchises that you can sink your teeth into in the UK.
The number of Asian food franchises in the UK has grown drastically since the opening of the UK’s first Asian restaurant over 100 years ago. The cuisine has long offered Brits quick, delicious and nutritious food options, many of which are now available ‘on the go’. Starting your own restaurant is never easy, but offering Asian food options could be your ticket to profitability. Why? you ask. It all comes down to the enduring popularity of Chinese cuisine… Let’s explore this a little further.
>> Read more:
Reasons why starting an Asian food franchise is a great idea
It’s the nation’s favourite cuisine
Mintel announced that Chinese was the UK’s favourite ‘world’ cuisine. Given that Chinese is also the most popular takeaway option in the UK, it is no surprise that 78 percent of Brits are thought to have consumed Chinese food at home within the last three months, while 12 percent eat Chinese food at least once a week. Chefspencil also used Google Trends to find that Chinese is by far the most popular world cuisine in the UK, followed by Italian and then Thai.
You can get creative with your menu offering
The sheer versatility of China’s many sweet, salty, sour, spicy and bitter dishes means that there is something to suit every taste. Versatility is also found in Asian cooking techniques; for example, fish is commonly steamed, stewed, boiled, stir-fried, deep-fried, sautéed, roasted and even pickled. This is where Asian restaurants can offer something different to other popular eateries. It also means you can have some fun with your menu offering and offer a unique dining experience.
Top Asian food franchises in the UK
If you want to run your own Asian restaurant business, you can join one of these successful franchises. Here are our top Asian food franchises to get involved in:
Established in Chester in 2008, this Asian food franchise offers noodle and rice dishes, along with salads, soups and Asian ice creams. Wok&Go blends food traditions from Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, China and Japan to bring healthy and dishes to its customers.
The brand is based on a very quick service. By only cooking individual dishes after the order has been made, it ensures that only fresh and nutritious food makes its way to customers. Asian food fanatics can find Wok&Go in 18 locations in the UK, across North West, North East and Southern England and Wales.
- Becoming a Wok&Go franchisee: The brand has high hopes for expansion and is particularly looking for qualified individual and corporate franchisees interested in opening up in the South of England, London and Manchester.
- How much you need to invest: Interested franchisees should make a total investment of £200,000 and pay franchise fees of £20,000.
- What you get for your investment: You will receive help in the recruitment and staff training processes and be allocated a dedicated area manager, who will visit the franchise unit twice a month.
Wok To Walk
You’ve probably seen Wok To Walk’s black and orange logo on the high street somewhere. Ever wondered if you could start your own? Well, read on to find out more about the exciting opportunity. There are over 85 Wok To Walk stores giving customers their Asian food fix and taking the food service industry by storm.
- Becoming a Wok To Walk franchisee: The franchise opportunity is flexible. You can open a flagship store or a hole-in-the-wall spot - it’s up to you! It’s the versatile business model that attracts all types of customers. Wok To Walk is looking for entrepreneurs who share its ambitious expansion plans.
- How much you need to invest: Restaurant start-up costs can vary, but you’re looking at around £100,000 for the minimum investment cost.
- What you get for your investment: As well as a globally recognised brand name, you will benefit from a tried and tested training programme. The HQ team works with franchisees and provides bespoke consultancy services and support.
This Japanese food franchise’s primary offering is its fresh udon, rather than sushi. Having already launched more than 1,000 restaurants in Japan, South-East Asia, Australia and in California, Marugame Udon now has its sights on the UK. It’s calling for business-minded British entrepreneurs to help the brand’s expansion.
- Becoming a Marugame Udon franchisee: The Japanese restaurant franchise is looking for area development franchisees who are prepared to open at least five locations. It asks that candidates are business-minded and eager to play a key part in the brand’s growth.
- How much you need to invest: In order to become a Marugame Udon franchisee, you need to make a minimum investment of £250,000 up to a total investment of £500,000.
- What you get for your investment: You’ll be designated your own exclusive territory and granted access to the comprehensive training programme. Marugame Udon is completely dedicated to brand development, so it is constantly updating the operations manual, promotional materials and website.
If you’re looking for something a little bit different, you could invest in a bubble tea franchise. The popularity of the Asian drink is growing rapidly here in the UK. It’s made by infusing a tea base with milk and fruit juices and adding the characteristic ‘bubbles’ – tapioca pearls that sit at the bottom.
Mooboo was established in 2012 and is now one of the UK’s leading bubble tea retailers, boasting a menu of more than 70 different teas. Customers can choose from savoury, fruit, milk and fresh teas, as well as mocktails and blended ice ‘smoothies’ in exotic flavours such as lychee, matcha, coconut and taro.
- Becoming a Mooboo franchisee: With a social media following of over 35,000, Mooboo represents a great opportunity for entrepreneurs who would like to break into the speciality tea sector.
- How much you need to invest: The initial cost of a Mooboo franchise is £39,950, which includes the franchise fee, license fee, start-up costs, inventory and training. Franchisees must also pay regular royalty fees and an annual rent of £30,000.
- What you get for your investment: Mooboo provides comprehensive training for new franchisees. Its programme covers product knowledge, business operations, marketing and IT systems, and includes ongoing support and coaching to achieve maximum profit potential. If you follow the franchise’s guidelines, you can expect to make a yearly income of just under £80,000.
Bubbleology was founded in 2011 and now has stores across the UK and US. The brand offers a menu of hot or cold flavoured fruit and milk bubble teas with chewy tapioca balls. Bubbleology is passionate, not only about the development of the brand but about making a positive impact and giving to less fortunate communities. This means customers can feel good about their purchase, as the bubble tea franchise donates money to international programmes building wells in Africa.
- Becoming a Bubbleology franchisee: This franchise is looking for candidates with previous experience in the retail or restaurant industry, as well as a commitment to its brand growth.
- How much you need to invest: Franchisees should be able to make an investment of £120,000.
- What you get for your investment: Franchisees can regularly visit the Bubbleology headquarters in London to boost their knowledge of the brand and benefit from established training schemes. Also, the franchise regularly analyses your business and provides performance reviews to make sure your store is always at the top of its game.
>> Read more:
- 12 Things to Consider When Identifying the Right Location for Your Restaurant Franchise
- 3 Ways to Get Funding For Your Restaurant Franchise
- Regulations and Licences Required to Open a Restaurant
- Understanding Your Target Market for Your Restaurant
- Hiring Employees for Your Restaurant
- Choosing a Concept for Your Restaurant
Start an Asian food franchisee today
Chinese food outlets have the potential to be extremely successful if the business gets the formula right. While fast food and takeaways are always in demand, there’s a growing market for more nutritious options, as well as vegetarian and vegan dishes. You can browse our list of specific noodle bar franchises, or, if you’re interested in the restaurant industry as a whole, take a look at the restaurant franchises recruiting new franchisees.
Becky Martin, Point Franchise ©