Tate Catering has won a five-year deal worth £1.75m in turnover over the full term to run the café at the new Liverpool John Moores University Arts and Design Academy.
Tate will provide food, drink and a mobile espresso bar for visitors, students and staff, as well as providing hospitality services at a separate studio space.
It is expected 12 full-time staff members will be employed.
The £24.1m academy building currently being built at the university has been designed by architects Rick Mather, who worked on the renovation of the National Maritime Museum in London's Greenwich.
It is due to open in September next year to coincide with Liverpool's status as European Capital of Culture for 2008.
Robin Bidgood, chief executive of Tate Catering, said: "It's great for us. It's our third contract in Liverpool, and it's something that cements the relationship with the university. We already have art links with them, so to back it up with catering is fantastic."
Tate's £2.2m annual turnover contract at Liverpool's Bluecoat Art Centre will go live next March with the opening of the facility. Tate will run a bar and restaurant at the centre, which is currently under construction.
By Tom Howard