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SOUTH KOREA – MPK Group expands its coffee business

SEUL – MPK Group, which runs the pizza franchise Mister Pizza, has announced that it is expanding its coffee business. MPK Group said it will open up its first European bakery cafe Manoffin next to the Hamilton Hotel in Itaewon.

MPK currently operates 38 small Manoffin Express shops across the country.

But the new bakery cafe will be different from its small coffee stalls and is designed to compete with major coffee franchises, such as Starbucks and Caffe Bene, by going for a high-end image.

The price its Americano coffee will cost 4,100 won.

In addition to coffee, the cafe will offer muffins, cupcakes and other goods, all supposedly baked in a traditional British way.

MPK plans to open up two to three more bakery shops by the end of the year.

“To secure brand competitiveness in the ever-growing competitive coffee market, we came to the conclusion that we needed to offer a distinctively different menu other than coffee and other types of drinks,” said Moon Young-joo, MPK chairman.

Patent applications for coffee-related products surge

The number of new applications submitted to the South Korea’s copyright agency for coffee-related products and brands surged in 2012 from four years earlier, data showed Wednesday.

Around 1,100 coffee-related trademark applications were filed in 2012, rising sharply from an annual figure of 300 cases tallied in 2008, according to the Korean Intellectual Property Office.

Source: koreajoongangdaily, Yonhap English News Service