Yo Sushi Hires Mastermind of Pizza Express to Head International Expansion


By Orderinchaos [CC BY-SA 4.0] via Wikimedia Commons

Yo Sushi has obtained the services of Pizza Express’ former boss as it looks to expedite its plans for international growth.

Sources that familiar with the situation informed reporters that tomorrow morning, the restaurant, the largest sushi restaurant chain in the world outside of Japan, will reveal Richard Hodgson as the new chief executive of the chain.

Hodgson, who was the mastermind of the international expansion of Pizza Express, will take the place of Robin Rowland. The said changes have been in the works since the majority owners of Yo Sushi, Mayfair Equity Partners, a private equity firm, first supported a management buy out in 2015.

Rowland will remain on the Yo Sushi board as a non-exec director and maintain his shareholding in the firm. The new appointment draws a line under the 18 years of Rowland at Yo Sushi, during which time the company has developed from three outlets to nearly 100 and has had three different private equity backers.

Last week, Yo Sushi revealed an expansion across the Atlantic that is worth £60m by acquiring the Bento Sushi of Canada.

Yo Sushi has been able to deal with considerable headwinds facing the high street, increasing like-for-like sales by five percent over 2016.