Before Starting Shakariki432″
Shakariki432” is No1 Izakaya in Thailand, it is loved by Thai people because of variety of dishes, such as Osaka soul foods, udon, takoyaki, hotpot. President Mr. Tomohiko Shimizu was naughty student in high school. After graduate, he went to vocational school however he expulsion from school because of fighting with senior students. Mr.Shimizu worked as chef at traditional Japanese restaurant to gain his experience for 2 years. When he was 20 years old, he met his wife at “Coming of Age ceremony “and get married. After Mr.Shimizu get married, he worked as a truck driver at day time and kept the chef position at Japanese Izakaya restaurant at night. At the Age 26 he was offered the position of store manager at Yakiniku restaurant that he often having dinner with his family. However, he resigned only 3 months due to internal circumstances. He starts thinking about independence in this period. “
Mr.Shimizu opened 28sq small shop at his hometown Noda Osaka with 6 million yen that he saved 6 years from age 20 to 26. That is the first Shakariki432. He had knowledge of cooking but he did know anything about management of store. Moreover, he is not good at talking with customers. He opened 30 seats of 1st Shakariki432” without taking it too seriously. He started with his wife and 2 part-time staff. At beginning, customers are only friends. He had hard time and took 1 year to climb into black by his wife and regular customer’s support. Meanwhile, one of regular customer became full-employee, store was changed dramatically. After opened first store 2 year and 3 month, he opened 2nd Fukushima Osaka. After that he opened Umeda, Namba, and Jigokudabani in Osaka before it had been fully considered from every angle. However, good time did not last forever. He worried most is about his employees. Mr. Shimizu is busy with management and did not have enough time to communicate with his customer. It is good things that employees grab customers hearts. However, his employee opened similar store near his store. Mr.Shimizu started to have a negative image to his employees.
Mr.Shimizu looking back that time and said “I got too carried away. I had never made system. That cause my employees run away. It is a natural consequence.” He realized how important to communicate with employees. He said with this experience, I wouldn’t be who I am now” One of the stores was fire, and add insult to injury, Noda branch was eviction and Umeda branch’s business was slump. He needs to think to sell the store. In the end, Noda branch and Shin Fukushima branch was left. “Mr Shimizu, is looking to expand his business overseas by 10million yen. He focuses on Thailand that he often coming as tourist before. He saw the business opportunity to Bangkok had to offer. He also saw the similarities between Thai people and people from Osaka. He decided to go to Thailand on December 2011. He did not know anyone so he started to go to lots of Japanese restaurant to meet people and researched town for a month. May, 2012. Mr.Shimizu moved to Thailand and Shakariki 432” Asoke Branch was launched in Bangkok on July,2012. Mr.Shimizu opened 1st branch in triumph. However, Thailand is foreign country for him. He had many troubles that never happened in Japan such as ventilations, Air Conditioner, and government officers. However Mr.Shimizu said I was very lucky. “It is very important to catch the wave” He got full support from his partner and increase sales steadily. His motto is “ Get started before everything set” . He invests company saving to keep opening the new branch. He opened 13 branches in Thailand and opened in Myanmar too. Mr.Shimizu said he will continue to challenge the new branches.
Why do you keep opening new branch?
Because I do not have any debts. I cannot get a loan easily as Japan. That is good for me. Even though, if I ever went bankrupt, I won’t get any minus. I do not have any stresses or pressure for opening new branches. So, if you have a good location, please let me know. And I would like to built the system that I was failed in Osaka.
What is the key for success?
I have never thought of myself as successful in this company. I believe I did not miss the opportunity and help from people around me. If I saw some people looking for job, I ask the person to work with me. I did not miss the chance. The timing is very important. I have communication problem with Thai employees. However, I did not miss the timing. I was surprised with Thai people’s high communication ability. I had hard time to explain the Japanese food but I could enjoy the situation from my character. Thai people drink a lot and eat a lot more than Japanese. Our Thai customers unit price is higher than Japanese. I succeed to get Thai customer through the Facebook advertisement. I posted not only promotion but also I posted unique and funny things too such as Moai statue and Otokomae beer.
Could I have a word to Young people who wants to independent?
Gathered the courage and took a step forward. As long as someone support you, do not give up the challenge. You can grab the chance. I failed in Japan because of I had never made the rules as company. I want to provide a good work environment for employees.