Wagamama plans to open 10 restaurants this year

Wagamama has announced intentions to expand its presence in the UK by opening 10 new locations in 2024, a significant increase from the six establishments it introduced in 2023.

The upcoming additions comprise Bentley Bridge in Wolverhampton, Glasgow (scheduled for February), Epsom (set for March), Doncaster (planned for April), Chatham Maritime (anticipated in May), and Woodside Leisure Park in Watford (also slated for May).

The pan-Asian restaurant debuted its first location in London's Bloomsbury in 1992 and has since expanded its footprint to encompass over 165 restaurants.

Wagamama expressed that there is an ongoing surge in demand for its signature dishes, including chicken katsu curry, pad thai, and bang bang cauliflower.

The expansion plan for the restaurant is projected to generate 500 new job opportunities, spanning roles from kitchen porters to general managers.

Thomas Heier, chief executive of Wagamama, said: 'We're proud to be opening 10 new sites in the UK in 2024. The past year has been an exciting year for us where we've evolved the brand through innovative new menu launches bringing new dishes such as vegan k-dogs, Korean-style hot pots and gochujang rice bowls to our benches whilst also launching new brand collaborations such as our slow fashion uniform partnership with Pangaia.

'Our teams have done an excellent job in continuing to elevate our guest experience and we very much look forward to welcoming more guests to our benches as we head into 2024.'

Following months of pressure from activist shareholders, TRG, the owner of Wagamama, was acquired by US private equity firm Apollo Global Management for £506 million in December of the previous year.