Q&A: Does Yo! Sushi Franchise in the UK?

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Yo! Sushi, with over 100 sushi restaurants across 10 countries, could be the perfect franchising opportunity. Combining Japanese pop culture with bright designs and fresh, tasty meals makes for an exciting investment. But does it franchise?


Yo! Sushi was founded in 1997 when it opened its first restaurant in London. Since then, it’s become a globally recognised franchise, famous for its top-quality food. The restaurant franchise’s exciting conveyor belt system makes the service quick and the experience unique. But can UK investors get involved?

Does Yo! Sushi franchise? 

Yes, Yo! Sushi does franchise in the UK. From its headquarters in London, the asian food restaurant is always interested in potential new franchisee relationships with suitable candidates across the country.

History of Yo! Sushi 

As mentioned above, Yo! Sushi was founded in 1997. It was founded in London, in January of that year, by Simon Woodroffe. Within six years, Yo! Sushi had opened up a further 12 restaurants, including one in Dubai. By 2010, over 50 Yo! Sushi restaurants were successfully running across the world. 

In 2016, 68% of people said that they ate sushi in restaurants [Statista], and this number has only grown since. It should come as no surprise that the Japanese chain has taken the UK by storm. Every day, colourful edible masterpieces are being served at Yo! Sushi restaurants across the world. Restaurant-goers can also customise a healthy experience for themselves, as the franchise was one of the first to introduce a traffic light colour coding system for its dishes, allowing customers to easily measure calorie intake.

Not only is the Yo! Sushi experience one of top-quality food, it’s also unique and high-tech, with the new iTray drone serving food to thousands of Britons every day. The franchise combines pride in its Japanese roots with constant innovation and re-invention of the serving process and the foods on offer. When you visit, you’ll be treated to exciting dishes that blend both modern and traditional Japanese style.

Yo! Sushi has received the highest award for sustainability from Fish2Fork for its use of albacore and yellowfin tuna, and the franchise’s tofu katsu curry dish won a PETA Vegan Award in 2015. 

Starting a Yo! Sushi franchise unit

Yo! Sushi provides new franchisees with everything they need to start running their own restaurant.

Rest assured that Yo! Sushi will assist you in every step of the way, until you become a seasoned business partner yourself. Your success is our success!
— Yo! Sushi



Becoming a Yo! Sushi franchisee:

As the sushi franchise continues to expand, it’s offering a variety of opportunities to potential franchisees in territories across the world. If you’re thinking of getting involved in the food service industry, ask yourself the following questions:

  • Do you have a background in the food and drink industry? (Training will be offered if you don’t, so don’t let this alone make or break your choice)

  • Do you have a strong interest in Japanese culture? 

  • Do you have previous management and leadership experience? 

  • Are you able to demonstrate strong business acumen? 

  • Do you have the skills to lead and motivate a team? 

  • Are you focused on long term benefits and successes? 

If your answers are a resounding yes, you should feel confident that you would be an ideal franchisee for Yo! Sushi. If you’re unsure whether you’re ready to become a franchisee, do your research ahead of time. It’s a lot of responsibility, but the rewards make the experience 100% worth it.

How much do you need to invest? 

To join Yo! Sushi’s healthy food franchise and become one cog in a hugely successful machine, you’ll need to make an initial investment of £250,000. Funding support is available, and many different banks across the UK will be willing to lend up to 70% of a franchisee’s total start-up costs. 

If you’re intending on running a multi-store franchise, expect to invest around £1 million for five units. You can open a maximum of five units over a period of five years, but this figure is, of course, dependent on three things:

  • The overall success of your initial restaurant - can you make the Yo! Sushi model work?

  • Your financial capabilities - do you have the money to make it happen?

  • Your level of experience - do you have a track record of similar success?


What do you get for your investment?

Once you’ve decided that Yo! Sushi is the right franchise for you, you’re entitled to support, both financially and otherwise. Here’s just some of the support that Yo! Sushi will offer you: 

1. Training

New franchisees will receive full training and support as they set-up and run their first Yo! Sushi restaurant. This training will include:

  • Franchisee/manager workshops

  • Employee/team member workshops

  • A full week of intensive training for all team members

  • A full month of intensive training, if required, for all managers

2. On-site franchisor visits 

Franchisors will regularly come to the restaurant to see how you’re doing and offer support, encouraging smooth operations all round. Find out why it’s important for franchisors to visit franchisees, and you’ll also discover what to expect during a site visit, and how to prepare for one in advance. 

3. Support services

A range of support services will be available to all new franchisees, including:

  • Help selecting a suitable restaurant location

  • Help with in-house design once a suitable restaurant location has been selected

  • Operations support

4. Marketing and promotional training

As well as your initial intensive training and the workshops available to you and your team members, you’ll also receive specific marketing and promotional training. This training will help you to develop solid marketing strategies moving forwards, so that you can be confident embarking on your business ownership journey.

Start your Yo! Sushi journey today 

In the space of 24 years, Yo! Sushi has had an impressive journey. There’s no doubt that the franchise will continue to expand and succeed, thanks to a combination of tradition and innovation that serves it perfectly. With constant invention of new, delicious dishes served in an inventive manner, demand for the japanese-style street food will only grow. An investment in Yo! Sushi is an investment in your future financial success.

Discover similar investment opportunities within the restaurant, coffee shop and pub industry, or browse Point Franchise’s full UK franchise directory to find the best fit for you.

>> Read more articles on the Sushi sector

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