What is a Business Plan for a Japanese Restaurant?

A business plan lays out all parts of your restaurant’s idea and strategy. It looks at the market, makes financial forecasts, and describes daily operations. A good business plan is the base for opening and running a successful sushi restaurant.

Why Do You Need a Sample and Template for a Sushi Restaurant Business Plan?

Using a sample and template can make writing a sushi restaurant business plan easier. A sample shows an example of a finished plan to use for reference. A template provides an outline to follow and fill in with your details. They help you:

  • Save time by using an existing format
  • Avoid mistakes by covering all sections
  • Learn from the best practices of successful restaurants
  • Customize the plan for your specific needs

You can find samples and templates online or in books. However, it’s best to customize them to your needs and situation.

The key sections in a sushi restaurant business plan are outlined below.

1. Executive Summary

A new sushi hot spot, Sushi Station, will soon open its doors near Bryant Park in Midtown Manhattan. Offering fresh sushi at affordable prices, this modern yet inviting restaurant aims to be a go-to lunch and dinner destination for neighborhood professionals.

What makes Sushi Station stand out:

  • A one-of-a-kind menu with both classic and innovative sushi rolls, including sushi burritos wrapped in soy paper
  • A fun conveyor belt system for quick self-service dining
  • Convenient online ordering for takeout and delivery (food delivery service business plan) right to your door
  • A rewards program offering loyal customers special discounts and free items

The owner, Alex Hales, is an experienced sushi chef who has worked at renowned New York City restaurants. As executive chef and manager, he will be joined by Robert Ross, an expert sushi maker, as head sushi chef.

Sushi Station’s goal is to serve delicious, nutritious sushi quickly and in a friendly way. The vision is to become the number one sushi restaurant in Midtown and possibly expand to other areas later on.

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2. Company Overview

Sushi Station will open at 123 Main Street in Midtown Manhattan, New York City. Seasoned chef Alex Hales, who has worked at acclaimed New York sushi restaurants, founded Sushi Station to share his passion for sushi.

Sushi Station aims to become the leading sushi restaurant in New York and eventually expand. Its mission is to serve delicious, nutritious sushi quickly and friendly. Sushi Station values quality, service, innovation, and sustainability.


  • Attract and retain loyal sushi-loving customers
  • Achieve high customer satisfaction and loyalty
  • Offer unique traditional and innovative sushi like sushi burritos
  • Use fresh, high-quality, local, organic ingredients
  • Implement a conveyor belt system for self-service
  • Provide online ordering and delivery
  • Create a customer loyalty program
  • Earn $500,000 in revenue and $100,000 in profit in the first year
  • Increase revenue and profit by 10% yearly for the next five years
  • Begin franchising and open at least two franchised locations by year five

To help with the franchising process, Sushi Station will work with franchise business plan consultants who can provide expertise on legal requirements, operations, training, marketing and more. This will allow for smooth expansion through franchising.

Sushi Station will register as a New York LLC owned 100% by Alex Hales, who will also be the executive chef and manager. Head sushi chef Robert Ross, an expert sushi maker, will own 10% of Sushi Station as compensation.

3. Industry Analysis

The sushi industry is a segment of the larger restaurant industry. 

Research shows that revenue for full-service restaurants grew at a compound annual rate of 0.4% over the past five years, reaching $208.9 billion. It increased by 1.1% in 2023 alone.

A Marketwatch press release stated that the global sushi restaurant market was valued at $18.955 billion in 2021. It is expected to grow at a compound annual rate of 2.23% during the forecast period, reaching $21.638 billion by 2027.

Before opening Sushi Station, owner Alex Hales conducted extensive market research and a feasibility study for restaurant concepts in Manhattan. The study determined there is significant consumer demand and room in the market for a new sushi restaurant with Sushi Station’s proposed concept and competitive advantages.

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Key Drivers

  • Growing demand for healthy, quick, and varied meal options, especially among millennials and Gen Z.
  • Rising disposable income and urbanization enable more dining out.
  • The growing popularity of Japanese cuisine thanks to media, tourism, and globalization
  • Technological innovations such as online ordering and automation are improving efficiency, convenience, and satisfaction.

Key Challenges

  • High competition from other restaurants offering similar or alternative options.
  • Profits are reduced, and risks are increased by the high costs of raw materials, labor, rent, equipment, licenses, and marketing.
  • Dependence on suppliers and distributors who may face issues with quality control, food safety, availability, transportation, or natural disasters.
  • Stringent government regulations requiring compliance with food safety, hygiene, sanitation, and sustainability standards.

Current and Future Trends

  • Plant-based, gluten-free, and low-carb sushi options for specialized diets
  • Creative, customized, and fusion sushi varieties
  • Sustainable ingredients and eco-friendly packaging
  • Digital technologies like QR codes, apps, and social media enhance customer experience

Main Industry Segments

  • Full-service sushi restaurants offering diverse menus, table service, and upscale ambiance
  • Quick-service sushi spots with smaller menus, counter or self-service, and casual vibes
  • Lively sushi bars focused on drinks and small plates
  • Delivery and catering services for customized sushi when and where you need it

SWOT Analysis

  • Strengths – The sushi industry is buoyed by growing demand, rising disposable incomes, and the global spread of Japanese cuisine.
  • Weaknesses – Challenges include the high costs of premium seafood, vulnerable global supply chains, and strict regulations.
  • Opportunities – Trends like specialized diets, customization, and new technology present growth potential.
  • Threats – Intense competition, operational risks like food safety, and numerous compliance rules could hamper the industry.

Sushi Station’s Position

Sushi Station will stand out as a full-service sushi restaurant providing top-notch, authentic sushi at reasonable prices in a welcoming setting. It will differentiate itself by:

  • A prime location near tourist attractions with easy access
  • Use of the freshest ingredients and skilled sushi chefs
  • Affordable pricing compared to other sushi restaurants
  • A varied menu with options for all tastes and diets
  • Quick, friendly service with online ordering, delivery, and catering available

4. Customer Analysis

Sushi Station targets busy professionals living and working in Midtown Manhattan who want fresh, healthy food in a convenient location. Alex reviewed several restaurant business plan sample to see how other restaurants structured their customer analysis sections.

Customer Profile


  • Millennials and Gen Z aged 18-40
  • Well-educated, tech-savvy, socially conscious
  • High disposable income
  • Mostly single or married without children
  • Live in apartments/condos near a workplace


  • Adventurous and health-conscious eaters
  • Interested in trying new and exotic cuisines
  • Value freshness, nutrition, and flavor
  • Environmentally and ethically aware
  • Support local, organic, sustainable businesses


  • Prefer sushi for its deliciousness, healthiness, variety, and convenience
  • Enjoy sushi restaurant ambiance and service


  • Restaurants catering to busy lifestyles and dietary needs
  • Fresh, high-quality, affordable sushi
  • Convenient location
  • Online ordering and delivery


  • Innovative sushi creations (sushi burritos, bowls, pizza)
  • Loyalty rewards and discounts


  • Frequent diners (3+ times per week)
  • Lunch/dinner at sushi restaurants or delivery
  • Use online platforms to view ratings, photos, recommendations
  • Order delivery via apps like Uber Eats, Grubhub

Buying Patterns

  • Spend $15-$20 per person per visit
  • Order 2-3 dishes (nigiri, sashimi, rolls, bowls)
  • Order drinks (water, tea, soda, sake)
  • Tip generously for good service and quality
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5. Competitive Analysis

Sushi Station will face both direct and indirect competitors in Midtown Manhattan.

Direct competitors are other sushi restaurants offering similar products and services. Some main direct competitors are:

  1. Sushi Samba – A chain with locations nearby combining Japanese, Brazilian, and Peruvian cuisines. Strengths are brand recognition, diverse menu, and lively atmosphere. Weaknesses are high prices, long waits, and noisy environment.
  2. Blue Ribbon Sushi – A family-owned restaurant specializing in traditional sushi and sashimi. Strengths are quality ingredients, authentic flavors, and cozy decor. Weaknesses are limited menu, small portions, and lack of online ordering/delivery.
  3. Haru Sushi – A modern restaurant with sushi, fusion cuisine, and online ordering/delivery. Strengths are convenient location, innovative menu, and technology services. Weaknesses are mediocre service, inconsistent quality, and low loyalty.

Indirect competitors are restaurants offering alternative/substitute products like:

  1. Chipotle – A chain serving Mexican-inspired fare. Strengths are popularity, affordability, and customization. Weaknesses are health concerns, lack of variety, and environmental issues.
  2. Sweetgreen – A salad bar chain emphasizing fresh, organic ingredients. Strengths are health, sustainability, and social responsibility. Weaknesses are high prices, long lines, and seasonal availability.
  3. Dig Inn – A farm-to-table chain with locally sourced dishes. Strengths are freshness, nutrition, and flavor. Weaknesses are limited options, small portions, and a need for more technology services.

To analyze the competitive landscape, Alex reviewed the business plans of other restaurants including taco business plan examples. This helped him identify best practices for assessing direct and indirect competitors in the area.

Sushi Station will have a competitive edge with its unique menu, including classic and creative sushi options. It will also feature a conveyor belt for self-service dining and provide online ordering with delivery. A loyalty program will offer perks to regular customers.

In the first year, Sushi Station forecasts capturing around 10% of the market, serving approximately 50 customers daily. It plans to grow its market share by 2% per year over the next five years by drawing in and keeping customers with its commitment to quality sushi.

6. Marketing Plan

Sushi Station’s marketing strategy focuses on product, price, promotion, and branding.

Product: Sushi Station provides a one-of-a-kind menu with classic sushi alongside innovative creations like sushi burritos. The conveyor belt allows self-service dining from a rotating selection. Online ordering, delivery, and a loyalty program with special deals are also offered.

Price: Pricing at Sushi Station ranges from $15-$20 per person, positioning it as affordable and competitive. Discounts and coupons are available through the loyalty program and referrals.

Place: The Sushi Station restaurant is conveniently located at 123 Main Street in Midtown Manhattan, New York City. This high-visibility spot sees heavy foot traffic from the target audience.

To craft an effective marketing plan, Alex studied various seafood restaurant business plan to understand their branding, promotions, budget allocations, and performance tracking. This provided valuable insights into best practices.


  • Advertising: Online – social media ads and posts; Offline – print, flyers, coupons
  • Public Relations – Press releases, media interviews, blog articles, podcast appearances, influencer partnerships
  • Sales Promotion – Discounts, coupons, free samples, loyalty program perks, gift cards
  • Personal Selling – Staff product knowledge, excellent customer service, relationship building with diners


  • Name – Simple and memorable
  • Logo – A stylized sushi roll conveying freshness and sophistication
  • Tagline – “The best place for sushi”
  • Design – Modern, minimalist aesthetic with clean lines and elegance
  • Tone – Friendly yet professional, passionate about sushi, and innovative


  • The best option for sushi lovers
  • Top-notch, reasonably-priced sushi
  • A contemporary yet welcoming vibe
  • It stands out with a one-of-a-kind menu and conveyor belt system


  • The marketing budget will be 10% of revenue in year one, decreasing to 5% in the following years
  • Budget allocation is 50% for online ads, 30% for offline ads, 10% for PR, and 10% for promotions
  • Track KPIs like traffic, engagement, orders, and reviews to measure the effectiveness

7. Operations Plan

The Sushi Station’s operations plan section describes how the sushi restaurant will function daily. It covers the key aspects of the operations, such as:

Facility Layout

  • Kitchen – Sushi preparation and cooking area with a conveyor belt system, refrigerator, freezer, stove, oven, etc.
  • Dining Area – 50 seats, tables, chairs, cashier station, beverage station, music system
  • Restrooms – Toilets, sinks, soap, towels, cleaned regularly
  • Office – Computer, printer, safe for administrative tasks

Equipment and Supplies

  • Knives, plates, utensils, ingredients, beverages, etc.
  • Purchased from reputable suppliers for quality and value

Inventory Management

  • Software system to track stock levels, orders, waste prevention
  • Barcode scanners for receiving and using items

Staffing Plan

  • Owner/Manager (Alex Hales) – Oversees operations, manages staff, and finances
  • Head Sushi Chef (Robert Ross) – Prepares sushi, manages the kitchen
  • 4 Servers – Take orders, serve customers, handle complaints
  • 2 Delivery Drivers – Deliver orders using own vehicles
  • 1 Cashier – Processes payments, issues receipts

Training Program

  • Orientation – Food safety, policies, and procedures
  • On-the-job training – Hands-on experience with equipment and tasks
  • Ongoing training – New products, services, performance reviews
  • Online and offline methods – Videos, manuals, demonstrations

8. Organization and Management

Sushi Station’s organization and management consists of the following members:

  • Owner/manager: Alex Hales
  • Head sushi chef: Robert Ross
  • Servers: Alice, Bob, Charlie, and David
  • Delivery drivers: Eve and Frank
  • Cashier: Grace

9. Financial Plan

Sushi Station requires a total investment of $500,000 to start the business. This includes $200,000 from the owners’ funds and a $300,000 bank loan at 10% interest over five years with a 6-month grace period.

An additional $100,000 in operating funds is needed and will be obtained through cash flow plus a $50,000 revolving line of credit from the bank. This credit line has a 12% interest rate over one year, with a 3-month initial grace period.

Revenue will mainly come from dine-in, takeout, delivery, gift card, and catering sales of sushi and beverages. The primary costs are variable, like food, packaging, commissions, and staff wages. Fixed costs include rent, insurance, maintenance, taxes, marketing, and more.

Financial assumptions for the first three years include the following:

  • 200-300 average daily customers
  • $20-24 average spend per customer
  • 1-1.4 monthly visits per loyal customer
  • 80-90% customer retention rate
  • 0.5-0.7 new referrals annually per customer
  • 90-94% target for customer satisfaction
  • Diverse, high-quality menu with fresh, local ingredients
  • Competitive pricing and promotions to attract customers
  • Fast, friendly, professional service
  • Convenient ordering, delivery, loyalty program, gift cards, catering
  • 10 delivery vehicles, 20 trained drivers, $5 delivery fee
  • Loyalty program: 1 point per $1, 1 free dish per 100 points
  • Gift cards sold online and in-store
  • Catering with a 20% fee and a $200 minimum order

Work With OGSCapital For Your Sushi Restaurant Business Plan

At OGSCapital, we have over 15 years of experience creating customized business plans. Our team has worked with multiple entrepreneurs to launch their concepts in competitive markets like New York.

We thoroughly analyze your concept, carefully research your local market, and pinpoint ways to make you stand out. Our expertise allows us to develop an effective plan tailored to your vision. We handle the entire business planning process while you focus on logistics.

Our comprehensive approach includes the following:

  • Conducting competitor analysis.
  • Writing each section customized to you.
  • Forecasting financials.
  • Designing graphics.
  • Revising until the plan is investor-ready polished.

We provide an impartial, data-driven perspective to ensure your plan capitalizes on every opportunity. To start your sushi bar and restaurant business plan, schedule a free consultation today. Our dedicated experts are ready to craft your roadmap to success.

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Q. Is a sushi restaurant profitable?

Yes, sushi restaurants can be highly profitable if you plan well, choose the right location, and effectively market to customers.

Q. How much does it cost to open a sushi shop?

Opening a sushi restaurant requires an estimated $200,000 – $500,000 in startup costs for rent, equipment, inventory, sushi license, staff, and operating expenses.

Q. Why is restaurant sushi so expensive?

Sushi restaurants have high costs for prime fresh seafood and skilled sushi chef labor. The perishability of fish also leads to high spoilage and waste, resulting in slim profit margins that drive menu prices up.

Q.  How much money does Japan make from sushi?

According to Statista, in 2021, the total revenue from sushi restaurants in Japan was around 1.22 trillion Japanese yen. Sushi is a major part of food service in Japan.

Q. How do I plan a small restaurant?

To plan a small restaurant, create a lean business plan focused on your restaurant concept, target menus and pricing, capital requirements, and efficient staffing and operations plans. Keeping costs low and preventing waste will be key for a profitable small restaurant.