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Azumi Limited is an award-winning global restaurant business with proven brands offering contemporary dining in key cosmopolitan locations.

Co-founders Arjun Waney and Rainer Becker began Azumi's journey with the opening of Zuma London in 2002. This was quickly followed by ROKA in 2004.

Azumi's restaurant portfolio has expanded to include another three brands: ETARU, Oblix at The Shard and INKO NITO.


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Spotlight on Roka at ME Dubai

Pressure doesn’t get much higher than being the child of Rainer Becker and sibling of internationally acclaimed Japanese restaurant Zuma. Success is an expectation, not an aspiration, but so far Roka has more than kept pace with its family.

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Rainer Becker

Rainer Becker grew up in the charming German town of Bernkastel Kues, a winegrowing centre of the Mosel. This is where his love of food and cooking started, watching his mother prepare meals for the family. Already then, as a young chef, Becker was known for uncompromising attention to detail and infectious enthusiasm which ultimately steered his career to where it is today.

Becker trained in some of the most prestigious kitchens in Germany, including Goethehaus in Bensberg, Koenigshop in Munich and eventually became Chef de Cuisine in the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Cologne, where he remained for three years.

The breakthrough moment in his career coincided with his promotion to Executive Chef of Park Hyatt Sydney, in 1992, a role which he proudly accepted. During his two hugely successful years there, his work was quickly recognised and applauded by both the media and the industry, awarding him Executive Caterer of the Year. Following his time in Australia, in 1994, Becker became Executive Chef in the Park Hyatt Tokyo, where he was in charge of launching and running all of the five hotel restaurants and where he remained for six years.

Fascinated by the Japanese culture and food tradition, Becker quickly immersed himself in perfecting his skills, learning about history and traditions of Japanese culinary art, from the very authentic to modern style. He easily and readily identified with the thrive for excellence and perfection and respectful discipline that defines Japanese cuisine, from street food through to Kaiseki. It was during his six years in Japan that Becker's ideation of a new concept Japanese restaurant for the Western world was formed.

The challenge of London and a return to Europe beckoned and in 2002, Becker's vision became reality and ZUMA London was born. Instantly popular, the demand was so high that two years later, still restless, Becker decided to develop a second brand & introduced ROKA & Shochu Lounge.

In 2013, Becker moved away from Japanese cuisine for the first time in over a decade. His new concept, Oblix, located on the 32nd floor of The Shard – Europe's tallest building, is a dual dining experience offering Oblix West (restaurant), and Oblix East (bar and lounge). Both the restaurant and the lounge menus showcase the best of British and European produce prepared on the charcoal grill, spit roast or wood-fired ovens. Dishes are presented and delivered in the Becker signature style: upscale, yet unpretentious and sophisticated urban dining.

ETARU was launched in Florida in 2017. It offers the East coast foodies a take on the ROKA concept under a different guise; informal beach restaurant with elegant but effortless dishes that scream quality produce.

In 2018, INKO NITO, accessible and informal Japanese robatayaki joint, was born in LA, followed shortly after by a second location in Soho, London.

Rainer Becker's restaurant brands enjoy tremendous respect and recognition all over the world, yet he is not one to rest on laurels and his energy and imagination remain relentless; Zuma and ROKA, the pioneer destination restaurant brands within the group, continue to expand internationally.

Arjun Waney

Born in Karachi, India (now Pakistan) in 1940, Arjun Waney moved to the US and attended the University of California, Berkeley in 1957. He began importing Indian goods into the US to support his education. In 1965, he borrowed $80,000 and founded Import Cargo Inc, a speciality retail concept, in New York. He then sold two stores to Pier 1 Imports for $300,000 in 1968 and moved to San Diego, where he opened the Cost Less Imports chain of specialty import stores. It expanded to 17 stores in the US. In 1970, he sold the business again to Pier 1 Imports, then the largest import retailer in the US.

Following the sale of Cost Less Imports, he decided to take his specialty retail concept to Europe and opened a multi-store operation (which grew to eleven stores) in England and on the continent.

In 1973, he sold the business again to Pier 1 Imports and moved back to California. Waney then founded San Diego based Beeba's Creations, Inc., an apparel importer and wholesale distributor.

From 1982- 1986, Waney took Beeba's Creations through two successful public offerings and established Beeba's as one of the leading speciality apparel import distributors in the US. (See Business Week May 25, 1987).

In 1991, Body Drama, a spin off from Beeba's Creations was launched as a Public Company. After 4 years, Waney retired as President and CEO and moved back to London where he established Argent Fund Management Ltd., having had 30 years' experience in the US capital markets. He is Chairman, Managing Director and principal shareholder. By 1999, his investments yielded, on average, a net annual return of 31%.

Arjun Waney decided he wanted to help others after his own phenomenal success and so, in 2001, he founded the Savitri Waney Charitable Trust through which he and his daughter support and monitor projects in India on a committed, long term basis. A commitment which is very personal and close to his heart.

In 2002, tired of not being able to get a table at Nobu, he decided to invest in a Japanese restaurant. Mr Waney and Rainer Becker were introduced and then opened Zuma restaurant in London. The rest is history. Zuma flourished and now has a total of 11 sites globally, from Hong Kong to New York, Rome, Dubai and Turkey. A second brand, ROKA, was born in 2004 after the huge success of Zuma, focussing on the popular robata grill.

In 2011, Arjun relaunched the Arts Club in Mayfair with Gary Landesberg, Gwyneth Paltrow, Raphael Duntoye, Jai Waney and Pritam Waney to great critical success.

Coya Restaurant London launched in 2012 and quickly became one of the best restaurants in town shortly after the opening.

Arjun Waney has been successful in launching other restaurant brands too such as La Petite Maison, in London and abroad.

Sven Koch

Sven, who joined the company in 2011, works closely with creator and co-founder, Rainer Becker, sharing an incredible understanding and fundamental appreciation of the core values of the group.

Sven's primary objective as CEO of Azumi Group is the global expansion planned by the company. He brings a wealth of experience in business development of global food and beverage operations and a unique hands-on approach to the company.

Prior to joining the Azumi Group, Sven spent over 20 years working within international hospitality companies. His experience encompassed all roles, from the kitchen through to the front of house, and culminated in the position of Senior Vice President of Operations and Development at his last company, Trader Vic's.

His ultimate responsibility was international development and he expanded the brand throughout the U.S., Spain, Germany and the Middle East.