The owners of the restaurant group, which operates more than 50 sites in Singapore, Malaysia, China and Australia, have recruited Simon Phillips as European market representative to suss out the market here in the UK and identify sites and investors to help it establish itself and grow.
Phillips, a sushi and hospitality consultant, believes there is space in the UK's restaurant sector for the brand, which started life in Singapore 20 years ago and serves authentic Japanese sushi 'within modern and elegant surroundings'.
"We believe that what Sushi Tei offers isn't currently covered by any existing sushi business in the UK," he said. "It's a high-quality brand, but it doesn't have the high prices to match, so it sits higher than YO! Sushi and Wagamama, but is maybe more accessible than Nobu or Roka."
Sushi Tei sites
The company's initial target is to open 12 sites in London over the next five to eight years before it rolls out to other UK cities.
Phillips, who has already been in talks with owners of London shopping centres as potential locations for the brand, said typical Sushi Tei sites are between 2,000 and 3,000 sqft to host 200 to 300-covers.
He said: "I am already looking at sites, but what we really need are people who might be interested in developing this brand in the UK and could add it to their portfolio. Our next step is to find the right partner or partners in the UK to get it started over here and potentially into Europe."
Co-founder Daniel Ong is coming to the UK in April to meet those interested in helping to invest in and develop the company in the UK. A member of the board of property and investment group Metro Holdings, which was founded by his father, Ong is the driving force behind Sushi Tei's expansion across Asia.
The businessman is also working on franchise agreements for Sushi Tei in Cambodia, Burma, the Philippines and Brunei and is hoping to take the brand to other areas of the Middle East, Europe and North America.
Those interested in working with Sushi Tei in the UK should contact Simon Phillips at firstname.lastname@example.org.