Japan Centre announces new partnership with Cool Japan Fund to open unique Japanese food experience in 2018

Ichiba will be the first joint venture between the Japan Centre Group and Cool Japan Fund – a unique funding group which helps support businesses to promote Japanese culture overseas.

They aim to set up unique retail spaces across Europe to showcase Japanese food, to help increase the awareness of Japanese food ingredients and brands. The first of these spaces will be in London with the fund investing £3 million into the project. Cool Japan Fund also plans to open food culture showcases in other major cities in Europe.

Each of these spaces will have restaurants, shops and in store experiences and information for customers to understand more about Japanese food culture, cooking and cuisine.

With Cool Japan Fund’s partnerships with local and artisan suppliers across Japan, these spaces will be able to offer visitors a vast range of different products from sake, ceramics and groceries to rare regional produce from some of the best producers and farmers in Japan, exclusive to the stores and the UK.

In store experience is central to these showcase venues. Classes and workshops will be offered in a weekly schedule including sake tasting, sushi making and demonstrations. Artisan products will be showcased in a series of seasonal and regional food and drink festivals celebrating unique products and their provenance.

The london showcase will feature different food stations offering fresh noodles, tempura and Japanese street food favourites. As well as a Japanese bakery, sushi and sake bar and a dine in courtyard.

Award-winning specialist brand and interior design consultancy, CADA Design whose clients include Dean & Deluca, Shinsegae and José Pizarro will design the store concept.




Japan Centre
Japan Centre began life in 1976 with a suitcase full of Japanese books and an idea to cater for the community of Japanese people living in London.  Japan Centre has since grown to become one of the largest and most influential Japanese shops in London, adding a supermarket, bakery, deli, restaurant, homeware department and online service to its repertoire.  The mission has always been to offer the best value Japanese food both in store and online, the best variety and the best service. Japan Centre has a diverse range of services for Japanese living in the UK & Europe, and for those simply interested in the exciting world of Japanese food and culture.

Tak Tokumine Japan Centre and Shoryu Ramen CEO

A successful entrepreneur and a key figure in the ethnic food market, Tak gained invaluable business skills working for his family’s steel trading company in Fukuoka, before marrying and settling in the UK in 1975. From its beginning in 1976, Japan Centre has grown to become one of the most influential and well known Japanese stores in the UK and across Europe.

Cool Japan Fund

Founded in November 2013 as a public-private fund, it aims to support and promote the development of demand overseas for excellent Japanese products and services. It looks to support businesses across a variety of areas, including media & content, food & services, and fashion & lifestyle.