South Korea aims to foster 10 deep-tech unicorns by 2027 by supporting research and development expansion with the private sector. The KoreanMinistry of Science and ICT announced the plan post an emergency ministerial meeting on economic affairs. The Ministry of Science and ICT has set a goal of nurturing 10 deep-tech unicorn startups by investing 15 trillion won ($12 billion) over 5 years.
To achieve the goal, the ministry has set four basic directions:
- Expanding private sector engagement
- Strengthening pan-government cooperation
- Diversifying business support methods and supporting the ecosystem
The government plans to give financial support to early-stage startups within three years of establishment through policy funds linked to R&D.
It will also establish a national think tank ‘Scale-up National Technology Strategy Center’ to analyze the status of R&D investment and investment strategies. The minstry will also promote investment through a sunset system or restructuring of customary projects.
The Ministry of Science and ICT, the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy and the Ministry of SMEs and Startups will jointly analyze technology-related datasets to select promising technologies and share the results with the private sector. The government also decided to foster an industry-academia-research ‘scale-up valley’ where local labs, government-funded research institutes and companies maximize cooperation centered on regional hub universities.