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The opening of the Union City restaurant marks the fifth Teriyaki Experience location in the U.S. The international concept broke into the U.S. a year ago after operating for more than 21 years with a presence in regions such as Canada, the Middle East, and Italy.
The Northern California expansion strategy is part of a nationwide growth plan that calls for 600 new restaurants in the next five years, targeting Georgia, Florida, New York, California, Nebraska, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, and Arizona for expansion. The growing Asian-inspired quick serve concept already has signed commitments for more than 200 U.S. restaurants.
"We've had positive feedback with our first two Northern California locations in San Francisco and Hayward," says Nick Veloce, president and chief operating officer for Teriyaki Experience. "We are eager to grow our brand locally to take the lead in the Asian quick-serve segment and be a central player in quick-service from coast to coast."
Using the teppanyaki griddle to prepare meals fast and fresh right before customers' eyes, the Teriyaki Experience meal is simple by design and combines garden fresh vegetables and bean sprouts with chicken, beef, shrimp, or tofu, and a choice of Japanese steamed rice or yakisoba noodles. All dishes are cooked with water, not oil, which minimizes the calorie and fat counts to fit a health-conscious lifestyle.
Raja International Inc. has acquired the area development rights for Teriyaki Experience in Northern California. Company President and CEO, Makhan Bains, a veteran in the restaurant industry with nearly 15 years of experience who also runs the largest Indian catering company in California, will develop the Northern California market, including San Francisco, Alameda, Marin, Contra Costa, and San Mateo. Bains also recently signed on to develop the brand in Santa Cruz, Santa Clara, and Monterey.
"As Teriyaki Experience continues to expand in markets all across the country, I am very pleased to be a part of the developing the brand in the local market and building upon its already strong history and rich heritage," Bains says.
According to Joe Arancio, vice president of business development for Teriyaki Experience, the company is seeking single- and multi-unit franchisees with a strong desire to continue to grow an emerging concept in a unique niche within the food franchise business. With a franchise fee of $25,000, the investment to own and operate a Teriyaki Experience restaurant is typically $168,000–$250,000.