Cupbop's Vice President of Franchise Development Becomes Brand's First Single-Unit Franchisee

Emerging Korean BBQ fast-casual franchise announces executive team leader has opened a new location in Cedar City

Cupbop's Vice President of Franchise Development Becomes Brand's First Single-Unit FranchiseeSalt Lake City, UT  (RestaurantNews.comCupbop, the nation’s first fast-casual Korean Barbeque in a cup concept, is excited to announce their Vice President of Franchise Development, Mike Penn, has opened his own Cupbop store in Cedar City. Located at 1322 S Providence Center Dr, Suite C, the new location opened its doors in Q4 of 2024. Prior to this partnership, the brand has only partnered with development groups and multi-unit operators to bring their delicious food to new communities, making Penn the brand’s first individual franchisee. Although Cupbop currently has no plans to open its doors to single unit franchisees, management has decided to provide an exception to our people. We believe this opportunity will be a strong incentive for our people and we fully expect to change a lot of lives through this program.

Penn brings to the table valuable expertise in the field, having spent 25 years in the restaurant industry. Right after his college graduation, he opened his first restaurant, and has since spent the majority of his career in the field. He spent a brief stint working in digital marketing, but felt a strong urge to come back and follow his passion in the world of food. Prior to Cupbop’s launch of their franchise program, he approached the brand with interest in opening his own location. While they were not franchising at the time, his passion and experience led the team to hiring him as Director of Training and Construction, quickly moving to Director of Operations, then to his current position of Vice President of Franchise Development. He started with Cupbop when they were at 14 locations, and has helped them develop to the 50+ locations they have today, developing training and construction processes as well as innovative logistics for efficiency.

Cupbop's Vice President of Franchise Development Becomes Brand's First Single-Unit Franchisee
Mike Penn, Cupbop Vice President of Franchise Development

“I am beyond honored and excited to be Cupbop’s first single-unit franchisee and bring our food to Cedar City,” said Penn. “Since my first introduction to the company, I’ve wanted to be a part of their growth. Cupbop is incredibly unique, and its clear the team has a lot of fun in everything we do. The brand has allowed me to truly engage and interact in a meaningful way with our customers, and it brings me a lot of joy to be able to use my business to be a bright spot in other peoples’ days.”

Penn’s first introduction to Cupbop was trying their food at a Utah Jazz game, where he quickly fell in love with the brand’s unique menu and hospitality. He noted the company’s entertaining and interactive social media presence as a factor in his interest, and has since seen first hand their commitment to having fun both internally and with customers. In his new location in Cedar City, he plans to lead by example, focusing on food quality, employee training, customer service, and an enjoyable culture. He also plans to put an emphasis on community involvement, helping out the local members of Cedar City and bringing Cupbop to local sports teams, clubs, schools, and more.

“My past experiences in business have taught me that anything is possible if you’re willing to work hard,” continued Penn. “I’ve always been entrepreneurial at heart, and I’ve had to work my way up from scratch to get to the point I am today. I now look to bring my experience to Cupbop to develop young leaders and watch them grow within the brand, all while providing the best experience possible for our loyal customer base.”

Founded in 2013 by Junghun Song, the concept of Cupbop originally began as a food truck in Salt Lake City. The brand quickly captured the attention of locals and tourists, but has not opened for franchise opportunities until now. Cupbop’s leading franchisee group last year raised an additional $10,000,000 in funding to accelerate Cupbop store openings, which shows the franchisee’s strong conviction in the Korean QSR brand. The fast-casual Korean establishment is committed to providing quality cuisine while showcasing Korean flavors and culture. Serving up tasty noodles, the brand offers a unique take on Korean BBQ classics that puts an emphasis on fresh, quality ingredients. Ensuring that everyone can enjoy the Cupbop experience, the brand caters to a variety of dietary needs, providing delicious gluten-free and vegetarian options.

“Though we currently don’t have any plans to open up Cupbop to single unit franchisees, our people will be the exception as they live and breathe our brand every day and are our biggest ambassadors. We are excited to finally kick off this internal pilot program with Mike and expect to change a lot of lives in the future.” said Dok Kwon, Chief Operating Officer of Cupbop. “From day one, he has demonstrated an immense passion for Cupbop and a strong desire to open his own store, and we are incredibly confident that he is the perfect person to bring Cupbop to Cedar City.”

With 57 locations currently operating throughout the U.S., Cupbop is seeking experienced multi-unit franchisees with an entrepreneurial spirit, strong people management skills, and a passion for providing delicious, high-quality products and unmatched customer service to its community. The corporate team offers prospective franchisees the tools to operate successfully through teamwork and strong leadership while creating a first-class experience for guests. Including the franchise fee, the initial investment for an Cupbop franchise is between 300k-650k.

For more information about franchising opportunities and available territories, visit

About Cupbop

As the nation’s first quick-service Korean Barbeque in a cup franchise, Cupbop is committed to providing quality Korean cuisine. The brand has seen success both internationally and nationally with over 170 locations in Indonesia and 55 locations open throughout the states of Utah, Idaho, Arizona, Colorado, Nevada, Texas and Oklahoma. Originally founded as a food truck in 2013, the brand has stayed true to its roots with small storefronts and simple operational procedures, offering a streamlined business model that helps ensure franchisee success Cupbop is dedicated to highlighting Korean culture and has reimagined the Korean barbeque experience with their unique menu items. For more information, visit

Amarra Lyons
Franchise Elevator PR