Chairman of the Board of Directors, Chief Executive Officer
Mr. Chae founded Yoshiharu in 2016. Led by Mr. Chae, Yoshiharu has expanded to become a leading Japanese cuisine restaurant chain in Southern California. The root of Mr. Chae’s business knowledge comes from over two decades leading a wide array of industries including both the financial services and retail services segments. Mr. Chae has been a business executive for over 10 years, serving as the President of APIIS Financial, Inc., a financial planning and wealth management firm. Prior to APIIS Financial, Inc., Mr. Chae served as the Managing Site Partner for John Hancock from January 2002 to October 2010.
Mr. Chae immigrated from South Korea to the United States as a teenager, and diligently worked to enroll at UCLA where he studied Economics. Prior to graduation, Mr. Chae began his career at California Korea Bank, one of the first banks to service Koreans living in the United States. Mr. Chae rose to the position of Loan Adjuster before venturing out on his own as an entrepreneur. While starting his own businesses, Mr. Chae often found comfort in a warm bowl of ramen to uplift him and energize his spirit, which served as the inspiration for Yoshiharu. Mr. Chae’s background in the financial services industry provided him access to restaurants and retailers which helped him understand the restaurant industry and more importantly, the necessary foundations in building a successful restaurant business. Mr. Chae believed that there was a large addressable market for ramen, and together with his experience and passion for the business, founded Yoshiharu.
Mr. Kim was appointed to serve as a director effective February 4, 2022. Mr. Kim serves as the Chief Executive Officer of Reborn Coffee Inc. Prior to Reborn, Mr. Kim founded Wellspring Industry, Inc. in California in 2007 which created the yogurt distribution company “Tutti Frutti” and bakery-café franchise “O’My Buns.” Tutti Frutti grew to approximately 700 agents worldwide that offered self-serve frozen yogurt. Mr. Kim sold the majority ownership of Wellspring to a group of investors in 2017.
Prior to founding Wellspring, Mr. Kim was the owner of Coffee Roasters in Riverside, California from 2002 to 2007. Mr. Kim worked as the project manager for JES Inc., based in Brea, CA from 1997 to 2002 where he coordinated and managed environmental engineering projects. Mr. Kim worked as a Senior Process Engineer for Allied Signal Environment Catalyst in Tulsa, Oklahoma, from 1992 to 1997 where he coordinated and implemented projects related to plant productivity and provided leadership and direction to other engineers as required and provided information needed for Division product quotations. He also acted as the leader in a start-up plant to be based in Mexico for Allied Signal. From 1988 to 1992 he worked as the plant start-up engineer for Toyota Auto Body Inc.
Mr. Kim has a B.S, in Chemical Engineering from California State University at Long Beach and followed a Chemical office basic at US Army Chemical School in 1988. He was commissioned 1st. LT. of the US Army in 1986 and retired from the US Army in 1988.
Ms. Yeo was appointed to serve as a director effective February 4, 2022. She brings over 10 years of diverse tax, financial, and business consulting experience as a Certified Public Accountant from the state of California. She currently serves as the President of Grace Yeo & Associates, C.P.A., Inc, a full-service accounting firm based in Los Angeles. Ms. Yeo also served as a Partner at KNM Associates for over five years prior to joining Grace Yeo & Associates.
Ms. Yeo holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of California, Los Angeles.