Korakuen, a popular Japanese ramen chain, will open its first overseas outlet at Gateway Ekamai shopping mall in Bangkok early next year.

Makio Oikawa, executive vice president for sales and marketing at Tippatana Arcade, said this will be the first outlet that Korakuen has decided to open outside Japan.

In Japan, Korakuen holds the highest share in the ramen market. The chain says its popularity is due to the high standard of its ingredients and its own recipe for making ramen noodles that match perfectly with its special soup.
It also keeps its prices reasonable and promises good service. Korakuen operates more than 400 outlets in Japan.

"We are confident our first Korakuen ramen outlet in Thailand will meet the approval of ramen lovers, not just from Japanese expats who are already familiar with our reputation. We intend to expand with more outlets in Thailand," said Tsutae Niida, president of Korakuen.

The chain won overseas expansion privileges and support from the Organisation to Promote Japanese Restaurants Abroad.

Korakuen was founded in 1954 by Tsukasa Niida, father of the current president.

Chaiyapong Poosunthornsri, senior executive vice president of TCC Land Retail, developer of Gateway Ekamai, said: "We intend to make Gateway Ekamai a comprehensive shopping mall that will add novelty to modern lifestyles in Bangkok. Products and tenants are carefully approached to ensure novelty."

Gateway Ekamai is on Sukhumvit Road a few hundred metres from the Eastern Bus Terminal. With its unique Japanese touch, its operators believe it offers a new experience to residents of Bangkok.



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