Founder, owner and creative driving force behind all things YO!, Simon Woodroffe left school at the age of 16 and spent 30 years in the entertainment business. His production companies in London and Los Angeles designed and staged concerts for most of the 70's and 80's performers from The Moody Blues to Madness and Rod Stewart to George Michael and events like Live Aid.
YO! Sushi was founded in 1997 by Simon after an acquaintance suggested he open a conveyor belt sushi bar with girls in PVC mini skirts...and so started the world's most famous conveyor belt sushi bars featuring call buttons, robot drinks trolleys, Japanese TV and most recently self heating plates.
Restaurants followed in the department stores Harvey Nichols and Selfridges and across London. Latest are a megasite in Edinburgh and an island site at Paddington Station the precursor of a roll out through airports and shopping malls world-wide. 2002 openings include Leeds, Manchester, Glasgow and Kuwait.
YO! Below first opened its doors in early 1999 featuring sunken tables, self serve beer, smoke extracting ashtrays, singing waitresses, tarot readings, massage and bento meals.
The company intends to expand through economic downturn taking advantage of lower costs and more opportunities and its variable customer price ticket. Internationally YO! has taken its first cautious steps and interest is high throughout the world for its brand value as well as systems, developments and know how.
YOTEL! - Simon's long vaunted hotel concept is well into development and looks set to emerge in 2002 as a low cost, city centre, highly innovative alternative to the conventional hotel. Other projects that are tentatively being explored are Body YO!, a Japanese health spa concept and YO! Wear as well as the long talked about YOGANIC!
Simon is in great demand as a speaker at corporate events talking about entrepreneurship, customer service and creativity.
"'The most honest and human presentation from a person of great maturity.' 'brilliant' 'passionate and refreshing' 'gave me loads of inspiration'" Enterprise Masterclass
"Very good, a real entrepreneur, very enlightening and interesting, good presenter, good case study." Marketing Week Conference.
"It was an entertaining and inspiring speech and more importantly, we were impressed by the sorts of messages you we putting across." Touchstone SunSystems.
Wonderful presentation - motivational, educational and radical. Andersen Consulting
Great approach - good mix of people stuff and business stuff. Merrill Lynch
"We were very impressed by your presentation and the rating you got from the delegates was excellent." Management Forum. .
"Both I and my YPO colleagues enjoyed your fascinating speech very much." Young Presidents Organisation
"First class in every respect. Informative, thought provoking and amusing - inspiring in certain aspects." Acumen Entertainment.