KPOP Foods is a spirited food brand inviting people to discover and enjoy Korean flavors through its food products. Our mission is to bring people together and uplift spirits by spreading Korean food and flavors in America. Korean food continues to surge in popularity across America, thanks to celebrity chefs embracing and endorsing Korean flavors and the public gaining access to Korean barbecue and rice bowls. In 2016, Korean restaurants represented a $5.0 billion market in the United States. Compared to the more established Chinese and Mexican food markets, Korean food is 7x smaller, demonstrating a significant opportunity for growth. Here at KPOP Foods, we’re focused on fixing a tangible problem and seizing the opportunity by building a Korean food brand that people can resonate with an... [Read More]
Food and Bev
A Crowd Note modifies the typical convertible note so that the crowd does not automatically convert to equity shareholders.
July 17, 2018
October 15, 2018
Co-founder & CEO
Theo was fortunate as a child to live in Buenos Aires and Singapore, where he experienced a variety of cultures and cuisines. While traveling to other countries was great, Theo’s best memories were family reunions in the summer at his grandparent’s house in Atlanta. Theo’s grandma, along with other members of the family, would spend hours cooking large dinner the family that included freshly made ban chans (Korean side dishes), kimchi and tofu stews, and savory grilled meats. When it came time for dinner, everyone would sit, eat, and laugh, and it was these experiences with food, family, and friends, that left an everlasting impression on Theo.While Theo’s love for food grew, after college, he pursued a career in banking, working at US Bank for one year, and then OneWest Bank for three years. During those four years, Theo gained valuable skills and experiences in finance, strategy, and business. But with a passion for entrepreneurship and startups, Theo pursued an MBA to round out his skill sets. As a Manager of Finance for an early stage fintech startup, he was a key contributor in closing the company’s $2 million seed round. However, his passion for food, especially Korean food, continued to grow and after meeting co-founder, Mike Kim, he knew it was time to take a shot at starting KPOP Foods.Theo received a B.A. in Economics from UCLA and his M.B.A. from UCLA Anderson.
Co-founder & COO
While stationed around the US and abroad, US Army combat veteran Mike Kim introduced many of his soldiers and colleagues to Korean cuisine. The blend of brilliant flavors and the feeling of shared excitement created by these meals caused those familiar and those new to Korean food wanting more. This intersection of food, culture, and people would inspire Mike down the road.Mike served in the US Army for five years in various positions from an Infantry Platoon Leader, Project Manager, to Assistant Operations Officer. He’s worked in multiple cities across the United States, Afghanistan, and South Korea, leading teams as large as 60 people. This experience allowed Mike to hone his skills in leadership, strategy, and operations. Upon transitioning from the military and entering business school, Mike began working as a Strategy and Business Development Associate at Edison Water Resources, an Edison International company where he tackled a wide-array of issues around scalability and growth. In early 2017, Mike and his co-founder, Theo Lee, decided to pursue KPOP Foods full-time during their second and final year at business school.Mike received a B.S. in Engineering Management from the United States Military Academy at West Point and his M.B.A. from UCLA Anderson.
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