Wasabi, the sushi and bento chain led by Dong Hyun Kim, has reported a 27% rise in turnover to £22.97m for the year to 31 August 2010, a period that saw the group almost double the size of its estate. The company, which operates 20 sites in central London under its eponymous brand, said the increase in sales was in line with its growth strategy. It said it hoped to add a further six sites to its estate in the capital. In its latest accounts filed at Companies House, the company said sales had improved due to “opening more branches, our broader product range, increasing customer loyalty and improved product quality and availability”. The chain saw pre-tax profit almost halve during the year, down from £1.645m to £850,471 on the back of an increase in suppliers' costs and overhead costs from its expansion. Operating profit fell from £1.665m to £889,557, while administration costs rose from £5.91m in the previous year to £8.24m. It said that gross margins remains consistent compared with the previous years, standing at 40% compared to 42% in 2009. The company said it would continue to invest in the design and layout of its branches. It also said it regarded the investment in research and development as important and integral to its continuing success. The group said: “We remain confident that we will improve our current level of performance in the future.” Earlier this year, the company opened a site in High Holborn under its fledgling Korean restaurant concept Kimchee. The opening of the site raised the prospect that Kimchee could be rolled out as a sister brand alongside Wasabi.