History of Overseas Expansion

The 1970s

The Beef Bowl makes its way to U.S. soil.

The 1970s

Yoshinoya's overseas expansion did not start with the launch of a Gyudon restaurant, but with the establishment of Yoshinoya USA in 1973 for the purpose of directly purchasing beef, imports of which were restricted at the time. However, the Japanese government subsequently introduced a beef import ban. Without the prospect of a resumption of beef imports, in 1975, Yoshinoya USA launched a Gyudon restaurant in Denver as a business alternative to beef procurement. The Gyudon was named "Beef Bowl." Started as a last resort, the Yoshinoya restaurant in the United States gained popularity in its local area and was much talked about in Japan as an example of Japanese fast food going abroad. In 1977, Yoshinoya adopted an initiative to operate 200 restaurants in the United States and set up Yoshinoya West Inc. as a base in the West Coast region. Two years later, it opened its first restaurant in Los Angeles.

Year No. of Overseas Yoshinoya Restaurants Country Our Overseas Expansion Events in Society
1973 - USA Yoshinoya USA, Inc. is established.

The U.S. subsidiary, Yoshinoya USA, Inc., is established in Denver for beef procurement.
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  • Japan and other economies adopted the floating exchange rate system./li>
  • Primary Oil Crisis breaks out as OPEC raises oil prices.
1974 - - -

Beef import ban (Feb.) Lifted in Jun. 1975
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The Act on the Adjustment of Business Activities of Retail Business at Large-Scale Retail Stores takes effect on Mar. 1.

1975 2 USA
Overseas expansion begins.

In response to the beef export ban, Yoshinoya USA opens its first restaurant in Denver, offering Gyudon under the name "beef bowl" On February 17.
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The age of large-scale Japanese government bond issues commences.

1977 3 USA
Aiming to increase the number of restaurants in the States to 200

To achieve its goal of 200 restaurants in the United States, Yoshinoya West Inc. is established on Nov. 30 as a foothold for launching restaurants on the West Coast.

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1979 13 USA
The first Yoshinoya restaurant in Los Angeles opens.

The first Yoshinoya restaurant in Los Angeles, (the 7th store), opens on July 4.

Second Oil Crisis on Mar. 17

The 1980s

Restart in Los Angeles and start of expansion in Asia

The 1980s

The 1980s were a decade of corporate reconstruction for Yoshinoya's overseas operations. In July 1980, Yoshinoya Co., Ltd. filed for application of the Corporate Reorganization Act in Japan. Its U.S. subsidiary also filed for corporate rehabilitation in March 1981, commencing its effort at independent regeneration. In Los Angeles, Yoshinoya West made a fresh start by reducing its restaurants to nine. In an attempt to achieve a resurgence, it released a new item, the Teriyaki Chicken Bowl. It turned out to be a smash hit. In 1984, new restaurant openings was resumed. In 1985, Yoshinoya West completed the corporate rehabilitation process earlier than Yoshinoya Co., Ltd. in Japan. In the following year, it opened its 20th restaurant in the United States. This gave Yoshinoya great confidence. In 1988, the first Yoshinoya restaurant in Taiwan opened. The overseas expansion was gathering

Year No. of Overseas Yoshinoya Restaurants Country Our Overseas Expansion Events in Society
1980 13 -

* Yoshinoya Co., Ltd. files for corporate reorganization proceedings on Jul. 15.

The Foreign Exchange and Foreign Trade Act is amended, to deregulate domestic and overseas securities investments.

1981 9 USA Restart in Los Angeles

Yoshinoya West files a petition for relief under the Bankruptcy Code to the United States District Court in Los Angeles on Mar. 24 to make a restart with the number of its restaurants reduced to nine.
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The Building Standards Act is amended to institute a new quakeproof design standard.

1982 9 USA Teriyaki chicken Bowl released as a second mainstay item

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1983 9 USA

The rehabilitation plan for Yoshinoya West is approved on Oct. 18.

The Tokyo Disneyland opens on Apr. 15.

1984 10 USA
Yoshinoya West

Yoshinoya West resumes restaurant launches as it opens the Pasadena Store on May 19.

The Japanese become the world leader in life expectancy, in both males and females.

1985 15 USA Completion of corporate rehabilitation to expand business operations

Yoshinoya West completes its corporate rehabilitation in December.
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The teriyaki chicken bowl achieves commercial success amid a dieting craze.

The International Exposition, Tsukuba, Japan, 1985 opens on Mar. 17.

1986 20 USA Yoshinoya West launches its 20th restaurant.

The Act on Securing, etc. of Equal Opportunity and Treatment between Men and Women in Employment takes effect on Apr. 1.

1987 24 Taiwan Taiwan Yoshinoya Co., Ltd. is established in a joint venture on Oct. 6 in a bid to introduce Yoshinoya restaurants to the Asian market.

The Japan National Railways are privatized and divided on Apr. 1.

1988 33 Taiwan
The first Yoshinoya restaurant in Taiwan opens.

Taiwan's first Yoshinoya restaurant, the Guanqian Store, opens on Feb. 6.
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Regulations on insider trading are introduced.

The 1990s

Positively entering Asian markets

The 1990s

In the 1990s, Yoshinoya stepped up its expansion of overseas operations into Asia. To begin with, the first Yoshinoya restaurant in Hong Kong was opened in 1991, to considerable local attention. On the other side of the Pacific, Yoshinoya West steadily expanded in the United States, opening its 50th restaurant in 1991. In the following year, the first Yoshinoya restaurant opened in the Chinese capital of Beijing, along with the first Yoshinoya restaurant in the Philippines. Over the next several years, Yoshinoya executed an ambitious program of opening new restaurants in Indonesia, Thailand, South Korea, and Singapore. The style of restaurant operations and the menus offered varied with the country or region. During this period, Yoshinoya sought to establish a standard global approach.

Year No. of Overseas Yoshinoya Restaurants Country Our Overseas Expansion Events in Society
1991 66 HK
Yoshinoya grabs attention in Hong Kong for its high-end orientation.

Yoshinoya Fast Food (Hong Kong) Limited is established in a joint venture in February. The first Yoshinoya restaurant opens in Hong Kong in May. 15.
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The Commercial Code is amended to enable a company to be set up by one person and to introduce a minimum capital system.

Philippines

Yoshinoya Philippines Inc. is established in a joint venture in February.

Taiwan The Shilin Store is revamped as a walk-up restaurant on Aug. 8.

The Teriyaki Chicken Bowl is introduced to Taiwan.
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USA Yoshinoya West launches its 50th restaurant.

Yoshinoya West's 50th restaurant opens in South Pomona in November.

1992 74 China
The first Yoshinoya restaurant in Beijing is spotlighted for its food court style.

The first Yoshinoya restaurant in Beijing opens in Wangfujing on Mar. 18.
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Amendment to the Act on the Adjustment of Business Activities of Retail Business at Large-Scale Retail Stores takes effect.

Philippines

The first Yoshinoya restaurant in the Philippines opens in Robinson Galleria on Jun. 12.

USA

Construction of a Yoshinoya West training center, called Yoshinoya College, finishes in September. The Teriyaki Steak Bowl is released.

1993 83 Indonesia

A franchise contract is signed with a leading Indonesian company on Oct. 28.

  • The Act on Reform of the Financial System takes effect.
  • The Commercial Code is amended.
Philippines

The franchise contract in the Philippines is terminated in October.

1994 94 USA

Yoshinoya West offers beef bowls to Los Angeles Earthquake victims for free in January.

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Thailand

A franchise contract is signed with a leading Thai company on Jun. 8.

Liaoning

The first Yoshinoya restaurant in Liaoning, the Shenyang Central Street Store, opens on Oct. 18.

Indonesia

The first Yoshinoya restaurant in Indonesia opens in Pondok Indah Mall on Oct. 28.

1995 116 Thailand

The first Yoshinoya restaurant in Thailand opens in Future Park, Bang Khae on Mar. 15.

  • The Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake on Jan. 17
  • The Product Liability Act takes effect.
USA

Yoshinoya West launches a restaurant in Dodger Stadium on Jun. 2.

Korea

A franchise contract is signed with a leading South Korean firm on Sep. 28.

1996 136 USA

Yoshinoya Franchise of North America, Inc. (YFNA) is established for administration of the franchise business.

Mass food poisoning with O-157

Korea

The first Yoshinoya restaurant in South Korea opens in Gangnam Station on Sep. 6.

1997 145 Singapore

A franchise agreement is signed with Wing Tai Investment & Development Pte. Ltd. on May 27.

ASIA YOSHINOYA INTERNATIONAL SDN. BHD. acquired whole shares of Yoshinoya (S) Pte. Ltd. on June 30, 2016 from Wing Tai Retail Pte. Ltd., Singapore to make it a consolidated subsidiary.

The first and second Yoshinoya restaurants in Singapore open at the same time.

The first one in Ngee Ann City and the second one in Scotts Picnic open on Sep. 20.

  • The consumption tax rate is raised to 5%.
  • Hong Kong is handed over from the United Kingdom to China on Jul. 1.
  • Asian currency crisis
USA

The first franchised restaurant opens on Dec. 18.

1998 147 Thailand

The franchise agreement in Thailand is terminated in March.

  • A new amendment to the Foreign Exchange and Foreign Trade Act takes effect.
  • The Japanese Financial Big Bang is instituted.
Korea

The franchise agreement in South Korea is terminated in June.

Indonesia

The franchise contract in Indonesia is terminated in July.

The 2000s

The Yoshinoya brand spreading across the world

The 2000s

In 2000 and subsequent years, Yoshinoya accelerated its overseas expansion, particularly into East Asia, including the rapidly growing China market, and into Southeast Asia. In 2002, it increased the pace of expansion in China by opening the first Yoshinoya restaurants in Shanghai and Shenzhen. In 2005, Yoshinoya was honored as consumers' most trusted brand in Beijing. This reflects the fact that Yoshinoya was recognized as a brand in the Chinese capital. In 2009, Yoshinoya International Co., Ltd. was established to manage Yoshinoya's overseas operations, excluding those in the United States. As of the end of 2009, the number of overseas Yoshinoya restaurants was nearing 400.

Year No. of Overseas Yoshinoya Restaurants Country Our Overseas Expansion Events in Society
2001 168 USA

Yoshinoya New York Inc is established on Jan. 8.

Japan's first BSE case on September

Philippines

A franchise agreement is signed with Century Pacific Yoshinoya Inc. on Jun. 13.
The MRT Metropoint Store opens on Dec. 15

2002 195 USA

The first Yoshinoya restaurant in New York, the Times Square 42nd Street Store, on Mar. 25.

  • The European single currency, the euro, comes into circulation.
  • Asian SARS epidemic
Shanghai

Shanghai Yoshinoya Fast Foods Co., Ltd. is established on Jun. 3.

The first Yoshinoya restaurant in Shanghai opens.

The first Yoshinoya restaurant in Shanghai, the Nanjing East Road Sincere Store, opens on Aug. 8.
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2003 226 Inner Mongolia

The first Yoshinoya restaurant in Inner Mongolia, the Weiteli Store, opens on Nov. 15.

  • The Food Safety Basic Act takes effect.
  • BSE outbreak in the United States on December
Malaysia

A franchise agreement is signed with Yoshinoya Food System Malaysia Sdn Bnd on Dec. 8.

2004 258 Australia

Yoshinoya Australia Pty Ltd is established in a joint venture with Competitive Foods Australia Pty Ltd on Jan. 7.

Bird flu epidemic in Asia

Malaysia

The first Yoshinoya restaurant in Kuala Lumpur, the Mid Valley Megamall Store, and the second one, the One Utama Store, open on Jan. 15.

Shenzhen

Shenzhen Yoshinoya Fast Foods Co., Ltd. is established in a joint venture on Oct. 21.

Australia

The first Yoshinoya restaurant in Sydney, the Darlinghurst Store, opens on Oct. 25.

Shenzhen
The first Yoshinoya restaurant in Shenzhen opens.

The first Yoshinoya restaurant in Shenzhen, the Huafa North Road Store, opens on Oct. 27.
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2005 253 Beijing
Yoshinoya honored as the most trusted brand

Beijing Yoshinoya Fast Foods is honored as the most consumer-trusted brand in the Chinese fast food chain market in 2004.
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The 2005 World Exposition, Aichi, Japan takes place in Aichi.

2008 350 Fujian

Fujian Yoshinoya Fast Foods Co., Ltd. is established in a joint venture on Jun. 5.

The first Yoshinoya restaurant in Fujian opens.

The first Yoshinoya restaurant in Fujian, the Yuanhongcheng Store, opens on Sep. 2.
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  • The so-called J-SOX Act is introduced.
  • U.S. securities firm Lehman Brothers goes bankrupt.
2009 399 Japan

Yoshinoya International Co., Ltd. is established on Feb. 5 with a view towards further expansion of the Yoshinoya business in Asia.

N1H1 influenza pandemic

Indonesia

A franchise agreement is signed with Multirasa Nusantara Co., Ltd. in September.

Australia

The franchise agreements in Australia and in Malaysia are terminated in September.

Malaysia

The 2010s

Aiming 1,500 overseas restaurants

The 2010s

We have positioned our overseas businesses as a growth driver for the Yoshinoya Holdings Group, as we push forward with our strategy for expansion. In 2010, we reached 100 restaurants in the US and resumed efforts to expand into Indonesia, having previously withdrawn due to the 1998 monetary crisis in Asia. In 2011, we also resumed expansion into Thailand. By 2013, the number of overseas Yoshinoya restaurants had exceeded 600. Having set up ASIA YOSHINOYA INTERNATIONAL SDN. BHD. in Malaysia in 2014, we have now established a local management framework spanning a number of different countries and regions. This has enabled us to operate and make decisions quickly and effectively in line with the needs of local markets. With that in mind, we intend to take the expertise we have built up through years of overseas expansion, and feed that back into our domestic operations and the group as a whole, as we strive to establish ourselves as a truly global enterprise.

Year Number of Yoshinoya and Hanamaru restaurants overseas Country Our Overseas Expansion Events in Society
2010 439 USA Yoshinoya America launches its 100th restaurant in February.
  • Expo 2010 Shanghai China takes place.
Indonesia
Yoshinoya returns to Indonesia.

The Grand Indonesia Store opens on Jun. 25.
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Thailand

A franchise agreement is signed with Central Restaurants Group CO., LTD. in November.

2011 493 Shanghai Opened first Hanamaru Udon store in Shanghai (Shanghai Metro City store) on February 17

The Great East Japan Earthquake on Mar. 11

Thailand
Yoshinoya returns to Thailand.

The CentralPlaza Ladprao Store opens on Aug. 28.
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Heilongjiang/Jilin Area Opened 1st store in Heilongjiang/Jilin Area (Sept. 30)
2012 586 - The 500th overseas Yoshinoya restaurant opens.
  • Opening of TOKYO SKYTREE
  • Yen temporarily appreciates to highest level in 140 years due to European debt crisis
2013 647 Cambodia

A franchise agreement is signed with MEAS DEVELOPMENT CO.,LTD. in March.

The 1st Shop of Cambodia opens.
The KING's ROAD Store opens on Nov. 6.

UNESCO decides to register “Washoku” (traditional Japanese cuisine) as Intangible Cultural Heritage

2014 647 Qingdao

QINGDAO BRANCH, YOSHINOYA F&B MANAGEMENT(SHANGHAI) CO., LTD is established (March).

The first restaurant is opened in Qingdao (Qingdao AEON). (Mar. 7)

SoftBank announces humanoid robot

Wuhan

YOSHINOYA F&B MANAGEMENT(WUHAN) CO., LTD is established (August).

The first restaurant is opened in Wuhan (AEON Mall Wuhan Jinyintan) together with a Hanamaru restaurant. (Dec. 19)
2015 675 Malaysia

ASIA YOSHINOYA INTERNATIONAL SDN.BHD. is established(November2014).

Flag store is opened in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia(Mid Valley Megamall) together with a Hanamaru restaurant.(May 11).

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Opening of Expo Milano 2015

China

YOSHINOYA China Holdings Co., Ltd. is established(Jun. 9).

2016 733 Qingdao
Opened first Hanamaru Udon store in Qingdao (Qingdao AEON store) on May 8
  • The Bank of Japan decides to adopt “negative interest rate policy” as an additional easing measure
  • Launch of Social Security and Tax Number (“My Number”) System
  • UK votes to leave EU in a national referendum
Singapore

ASIA YOSHINOYA INTERNATIONAL SDN. BHD. acquired whole shares of Yoshinoya (S) Pte. Ltd. on June 30 from Wing Tai Retail Pte. Ltd., Singapore to make it a consolidated subsidiary.

Fujian
Opened first Hanamaru Udon store in Fujian (Xiamen One Park store) on September 10
Qing Hai

Franchise agreement signed with Xining Shenlong F&B Management Co., Ltd. (September 2016)

2017 821 Sichuan

Joint Venture contract concluded with Chengdu Longsheng Industrial Co., Ltd. (June 2017)

Nikkei Stock Average reaches highest level in approx. 26 years

Qing Hai
The first restaurant is opened in Qing Hai(Quing Hai Fang Zhi Pin).(May.30)

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Indonesia

PT. Happy Restaurants Indonesia established (October 2017)

Sichuan
Opened 1st Store in Sichuan (Parkson-Sichuan Center) (November 27)

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2018 923 Chongqing

Yoshinoya F&B Management (Chongqing) Co., Ltd established (February 2018)

Opened 1st Store in Chongqing (Long Hu Bei Cheng Tian Jie) (May 16)

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Due to the closure of Tsukiji fish market, relocated to Toyosu fish market.

Shenzen

Hanamaru F&B Management (Shenzen) Co., Ltd. established (May 2018)

Hanamaru Udon Shenzen 1st store (Shenzen Link City) opened (July 24th, 2018)

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Indonesia
Hanamaru Udon 1st Store in Indonesia (Lippo Mall Puri) opened (September 5)

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Jiangxi

Yoshinoya Jiangxi F&B Management Co., Ltd. established (June 2018)

Jiangxi 1st Store (Nanchang Causeway Bay Plaza) opened (October 1st, 2018)

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Henan

Tianjin Hop Hing Yoshinoya F&B Co., Lt d established (April 2018)

Henan 1st store (Zi Jing Shan Rd.) opened (November 19th, 2018)

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2019 994 Anhui

Concluded a joint venture agreement with Anhui Guangzhou International Holding Co., Ltd. (October, 2019)

Opened first Anhui store (Parkson Shopping Center) (December 20, 2019)

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Japanese Emperor Enthronement

Vietnam

A franchise agreement with V Lotus Holdings Join stock Company was signed. (October, 2019)

The 2020s

Develop infrastructure of Business, and more Growth

The 2020s

In 2020, Yoshinoya Holdings Group had to change original strategies for growth due to the COVID 19 spreading all over the world, which had caused serious damage to our business. In 2020 as well as we continued to fulfill the responsibility as a “Food Infrastructure” in each region, we increased profitability of business by overhauling cost and business structure, which includes a strategy of closing stores based on each location. From 2021, we will aim more growth by developing new service model stores adapting so-called “A new life Style of With & Post COVID 19” in each region.

Year Number of Yoshinoya and Hanamaru restaurants overseas Country Our Overseas Expansion Events in Society
2020 963 Vietnam
Opening of first Vietnam outlet (Yoshinoya Ly Tu Trong ) (December 23, 2020)

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  • Spreading out of COVID 19 all over the world
  • Postponement of Tokyo Olympic

*The number of restaurants represents the figure as of the end of December in the corresponding year.

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