Japan’s biggest udon noodle restaurant chain, Marugame Seimen, has gained a foothold in Russia, overcoming the obstacles to foreign companies that have kept many of its rivals out of the market.

With Tokyo and Moscow seeking to strengthen private-sector ties, Marugame Seimen’s operator, Toridoll Holdings Corp., has shown a way forward for Japanese food service firms in the promising but difficult-to-crack market.

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