simon woodroffe

053 20 March 2020

Embrace megalomania

Simon Woodroffe, Founder of YO! Sushi

Our guest on today’s episode is Simon Woodroffe, the founder of YO! Sushi. Simon had never opened a restaurant when he launched YO! Sushi in Soho in 1997 — and, at first, it seemed like the robot waiters, smoke-extracting ashtrays and raw fish served off conveyor belts might be too much for Londoners to get their heads around.

But they soon fell in love with it, of course — and it was Simon’s gung-ho spirit and experimental ideas, in fact, that made the brand such a colossal hit. We recorded this episode on Simon’s beautiful house boat on Cheyne Walk on the Thames — and the conversation bobbed along nicely from Simon’s early days as a set designer for rock and roll acts, to the reasons why he decide to leave Dragons Den, and even his dream to bring private islands to the masses. Enjoy!