The Korean wave that has captured global attention is not limited to K-Pop music or K-Dramas but encompasses delicacies from Korean cuisine. Korean food product brands see increasing demand worldwide, and the startups catering K-Cuisine are seen as a lucrative business. KPOP Foods, a Korean food startup launched through Kickstarter in 2017, announced that it got acquired by Wooltari USA, a leading retail and online grocer for Korean food products in the USA.
KPOP Foods was started by UCLA Anderson students Mike Kim and Theo Lee to spread flavours of Korean food worldwide. Since its founding, KPOP Foods has seen significant growth and got onboard celebrity chef Chris Oh as its Head of Product. KPOP Foods has become a top seller in major online retail shops and collaborates with key distributors to bring its sauces and seaweed snacks to 3,000 retailers. KPOP Foods is currently available in popular retail chains such as Bristol Farms, Lowe’s Foods, Hy-Vee, etc. From July 2020 to July 2021, KPOP Foods experienced a growth of nearly 400% in-store count. With the addition of Fresh Thyme Market and The Fresh Market in August 2021, the Company is showing no signs of slowing its retail expansion and its quest of bringing Korean flavors to the mainstream.
Wooltari USA is a fast-growing retail grocery brand that sources premium Korean food products directly from manufacturers in the US and South Korea. It is one of leading retailer for Korean food products in the USA. KPOP Foods will now function as a wholly-owned subsidiary of Wooltari USA. The food startup gets enhanced product development, sourcing, and operations capabilities to expand its distribution and services. Co-founder and CEO of KPOP Foods, Theo Lee, stated, “We share a common vision, and our teams possess expertise and knowledge in complementary areas. Together, we’re excited to influence the future of Korean food in the US.”
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