Seoul already has a startup ecosystem worth $39 billion, ranked in the Top 20 out of 270 cities in the world. The government is investing $bns every year into the development of the ecosystem, and looking to elevate the development on an even bigger scale, throughout the rest of the country and overseas.
Thanks to a combination of the above government support, a highly educated workforce, and a culture that values innovation and entrepreneurship, the South Korean startup ecosystem is booming. From cutting-edge AI and blockchain companies, to e-commerce and mobile apps, South Korean startups are making a big impact on the global technology scene.
In this blog post, we’ll take a closer look at the factors driving the growth of the South Korean startup ecosystem and highlight some of the most promising companies to watch in the coming years. We are also thrilled to introduce the ventures in our Launchpad Programme, led in conjunction with the Korea Creative Content Agency (KOCCA), and details on the opportunities you’ll have to see them pitch over the coming month.
So – what’s driving the South Korean startup ecosystem? Well, the answer is several key factors:
- Government Support: The South Korean government has made a significant investment in the startup ecosystem through initiatives such as the “Creative Economy” initiative, which aims to foster innovation and entrepreneurship in the country.
- Highly Educated Workforce: South Korea has a highly educated population, with one of the highest rates of university graduates in the world. This highly skilled workforce is a valuable asset for startups looking to develop cutting-edge technology.
- Strong Economy: South Korea has a strong and stable economy, which provides a solid foundation for startups to grow and scale.
- Focus on Technology: South Korea is a global leader in technology and is home to several major tech companies such as Samsung, LG and SK Telecom. This has created a culture and ecosystem that values and supports technology innovation.
- Access to Funding: There is a growing number of venture capital firms and angel investors in South Korea that are actively looking to invest in promising startups.
- Networking Opportunities: The South Korean startup ecosystem is well-connected, with a growing number of coworking spaces, accelerators and startup events that provide opportunities for startups to connect with potential partners, customers and investors.
All of these factors have contributed to the growth of the South Korean startup ecosystem and have made it an attractive destination for entrepreneurs and investors, and based on this success many South Korean startups are now looking to expand into new markets.
Interested in learning more about South Korean startups? Register and join us at one of our upcoming pitching and networking evenings taking place in the next few months!
KOCCA Launchpad Demo Day, London
The 12-week Launchpad programme will be culminating with an in-person Demo Day in central London. Join us for an evening of pitching and networking with the London startup and investor ecosystem.
📍Huckletree Shoreditch, London
📅Thursday 24th February, 2023
⏲️16:00 – 19:00
(Register for your FREE ticket here)
Launchpad Pitching & Networking Event @ MWC23, Barcelona
If you’ll be attending the MWC/ 4YFN conference, join us on Wednesday evening to hear from and network with our cohort of South Korean startups. There will be plenty of drinks and tapas – and we’re less than 2 minutes walk from the Fira de Barcelona venue ¡Te veo allí!
📍La Pepa Restaurante, Plaça d’Europa, Barcelona (only a 2 minute walk from the Fira Barcelona Gran Via)
📆 Wednesday 1st March, 2023
🕚18:00 – 21:00
(Register for your FREE ticket here)
About Launchpad ‘22/’23
The Launchpad Programme has been designed to support and accelerate the growth of early-stage South Korean startups in the technology and creative content industries and support their expansion into UK & Europe. The programme offers a comprehensive workshop-based curriculum, mentorship, networking opportunities, and access to funding to help these startups scale and achieve their full potential. The startups selected for the programme have been handpicked for their innovative ideas, strong business models, and capable founding teams.
Meet The Startups:
Linethree – a platform that matches amateur football players and clubs in England.
Nextmeta – an interactive, mobile first, personalised learning solution that provides AI recommendations based on cognitive learning habits.
FullDive – a solution for communicating sensory information into VR/ AR/ XR via a sensory glove.
Perspective – a web-based AI 3D generation service which builds 3D digital twins from multiple 2D images.
Stylebot – a virtual closet which stores images of clothes taken by users and integrates with online shops.
Anova – an AI based make-up content app where you can share, explore, and interact with curated, personalised makeup content.
Meclouds – a global travelling matching service which uses real avatar and real time VR to provide users with an immersive 360-degree experience.
The Korea Creative Content Agency (KOCCA) is a governmental agency, established in 2009, that oversees and coordinates the promotion of the Korean content industry.
The Bakery is working with KOCCA to help 7 South Korean start-ups launch into the UK & European market through a bespoke 12-week accelerator programme, Launchpad ‘22/’23.
About The Bakery
The Bakery helps ambitious corporations and ventures to start and scale meaningful innovation. As well as creating partnerships and opportunities with start-ups, we rapidly build brand-new ventures in an entrepreneurial way, helping to scale transformative innovation that impacts and grows your business.