Hyakunousha, the founding company of hana-musubi, has launched a brand dubbed ‘Omusubi’, and aims to roll out 10,000 stores by 2030 across the globe.
Omusubi, also known as “rice balls” is a Japanese food made from white rice formed into triangular or cylindrical shapes and often wrapped in seaweed like sushi.
Hyakunousha said Omusubi’s mid-term expansion plan will see the opening of 2000 stores by 2025 across Asia. The brand will also open an Omusubi Giga Factory in Hong Kong, whose construction will begin next year.
Yesterday, Omusubi’s first store launched in Hong Kong’s IFC mall.
“I believe that Hong Kong is the very first case where Japanese omusubi have become part of people’s daily lives and have taken root as a food culture in a foreign place across the sea from Japan,” said Muneo Nishida, MD and founder of Hyakunousha.
The store design is inspired by the contemporary Japanese style, featuring three main elements – white cloth for noren (traditional Japanese fabric dividers), brass and white wood.
Omusubi serves a range of more than 20 omusubi flavours together with soups and a selection of beverages, including Japan’s well-known hojicha and green tea.
The branding was overseen by Kashiwa Sato, who is also the creative director of Uniqlo. The new logo consists of a red triangle icon and the word ‘Omusubi’ in a triangle logotype.
“We decided to re-evaluate brand name, product names, design and communication from a global perspective so that everything will be well-accepted everywhere,” Nishida said.
Muneo Nishia founded Hyakunousha in 2010 with the first store opening in Hong Kong the following year. With a focus on serving hana-musubi (rice ball), the company has opened more than 100 hana-musubi stores across the region.