Korea’s first live commerce platform, Grip will get into a merger & acquisition deal with Korea’s internet giant Kakao. Kakao has secured the position of the largest shareholder (50% stake) by investing 180 billion won or $152.5 million in Grip Company.
The corporate value of Grip Company is said to be around 400 billion won. Founded in 2018, Grip Company operates a live commerce platform Grip. Launched in February 2019, Grip app is a mobile shopping app that allows users and sellers to communicate live and sell and purchase.
Based on this investment, Kakao plans to enhance its commerce competitiveness further and strengthen its role as a business partner to help offline operators and small business owners in digital transformation.
Grip Company already surpassed 24.3 billion won in annual turnover in the first half of last year and is expected to close at 80 billion won by the end of this year. This is a more than three-fold increase compared to the previous year. The number of app downloads exceeded 2 million in July and exceeded 2.1 million as of August.
B2B live commerce solution ”Grip Cloud’Cloud’ business is also active. Grip Cloud is a B2B service that transmits live broadcasts directly from its mall to communicate with customers and sell products, and it is a solution in the form of software as a service). In Korea, more than 30 companies, including SSG.COM, Shinsegae International, Samsung C&T SSF SHOP, and Lotte Hi-Mart, are already conducting live commerce through Grip Cloud. Grip Company has also started overseas expansion. It first entered Japan with Grip Cloud last month and aims to enter the US in the first half of next year.