Tampopo, the Pan Asian restaurant chain, is to focus the next stage of its growth on London and the South East, with the launch of a new brand purely aimed at the region called East Street. The first site under the new brand, which will feature a reworking on the recognised Tampopo design and provide a more “edgy and mould-breaking experience”, will launch at the group’s recently acquired unit in Soho’s Rathbone Street, later this year. The East Street format will be rolled-out across London and the South East while the company continues to consolidate the Tampopo brand in other markets of the UK. Tampopo, which was founded by David Fox and Nick Jeffrey in Manchester in 1997, currently operates six restaurants under its eponymous brand – three restaurants in Manchester, and one each in Leeds, Bristol and Reading. Jeffrey said: “For many years Tampopo has been an established brand in the North-West and we have subsequently moved into other regional cities. Our next phase of growth will centre on the South East and in particular London. With that in mind, we sought out a firm of London-based designers with a specialisation in brand development in order to put clear water between us and other Pan Asian operators. “We gave them the remit of staying true to our brand essence while reworking our physical environment in order to provide an altogether more edgy and mould-breaking experience that the knowing central London market craves. Our mantra is: “Know your audience. "The new look and feel is so differentiated from our current brand identity that it warrants a new name: hence “East Street”, which speaks directly to the origins of our product offer.” Fox said: “We recognised that what works well in a regional shopping mall is not necessarily going to be the same formula that floats the collective boat of the media-based crowd which surrounds our new space in Fitzrovia. “Our Tampopo brand package suits certain environments where it pays to come across as truly ‘branded’, whereas our view is that the aspirational young Londoner is looking for something that, as an experience, is new territory.”