The Business Times

Japan state fund to invest in ramen restaurant chain

Cool Japan Fund to put in up to 2b yen to help it set up premium outlets in Europe and the US

Published Mon, Dec 8, 2014 · 09:50 PM


"COOL Japan Fund", financed mostly by Japan's government to promote Japanese culture overseas, will invest as much as two billion yen (S$22 million) in a ramen noodle restaurant chain to set up premium outlets in Europe and the United States.

Cool Japan Fund will inject 700 million yen into the Fukuoka-based Chikaranomoto Holdings, which runs Ippudo ramen restaurants in Japan and overseas including New York, London, Sydney, Singapore and Seoul. "In Japan, people leave the ramen shop as soon as they finish eating," said Nobuo Sugiuchi, co-chief investment officer of Cool Japan Fund. "But we want to build a ramen shop chain in a different style overseas. A ramen shop should be a place where customers can enjoy sake and side dishes as well as ramen." Chikaranomoto can also borrow 1.3 billion yen from Cool Japan Fund.

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