Plenus, the operator of the Japanese Hotto Motto chain of bento stores, has announced plans to enter the Chinese market.
The company is reported to be planning to set up joint ventures with local food enterprises and will open its first store in China in July 2010. This will be the first time that Plenus expands its business in an overseas market.
The company said that it plans to open about 200 stores in China over the next five years. These stores will provide the same menu as they offered in Japan. Seats for dining in the stores will also be available.
Plenus says they are optimistic about their development in China, because China, like Japan, is a country where rice is a staple food. It addition, the company's focus on food safety is expected to appeal to local consumers.
Hotto Motto is a takeaway bento chain operated by Plenus and positions itself as offering the general public with freshly made, hot, boxed meals that are delicious, comforting, reassuring, and prepared with care.