News about Korean startup ecosystem: Baby Unicorns, International partnerships & upgrades 

The Ministry of SMEs and Startups have been actively supporting Korean startups. Last week it announced the organizing committee for Korea’s global startup festival COMEUP 2021, to be held in November. The Ministry also announced recruiting 60 startups for its ambitious ‘Baby Unicorn Nurturing Project.’

In international ties, Korean unicorn startup Yanolja forayed into partnership with Citibank Group to expand its global presence and SK Group, to bring self-driving trucks to Asia as it partners with US startup Kodiak Robotics. Korean crowdfunding platform Wadiz launched AI-driven personalized service, and Seoul opens “Seoul Startup Hub World,” an incubator for startups in Seoul.

The beginning of the future unicorn, ‘Baby Unicorn’ 60 companies

Source: Platum 

The Ministry of SMEs and Startups announced on May 26 the final selection of 60 baby unicorns for ‘Baby Unicorn 200 Promotion Project’. Companies selected for the ‘Baby Unicorn 200 Nurturing Project’ are supported with a market development fund of 300 million won, and special guarantees, policy funds, and technology development (R&D) and are also eligible for preferential treatment.155 companies applied for the Baby Unicorn 200 selection and went through technology evaluation. Final 60 companies were selected through the second written evaluation and final presentation evaluation.

Citibank Joins Hands with Yanolja to Promote Its Global Business

Source: Business Korea 

Source: Business Korea

Citibank announced on May 24 that it has signed a business agreement with leisure travel platform Yanolja to rev up its global business. It plans to combine Yanolja’s platform capabilities with its global network. Citibank, which has decided to withdraw from the consumer financial market in Korea, is stepping up its efforts to strengthen corporate finance. Yanolja is planning to strengthen its competitive edge in foreign markets by utilizing Citigroup’s global network. Currently, the company is providing cloud-based hotel operation solutions to more than 30,000 customers in 170 countries around the world. It is expected to expand its license agreement with countries through cooperation with Citibank.

SK partners with US self-driving truck tech firm

Source: The Korea Times

Source: Kodiak

SK Group’s holding company has partnered with Kodiak Robotics, a US self-driving truck startup, to introduce the company’s technology in Asian markets.Under the partnership, Kodiak will combine its software with SK’s products, components and technology. Kodiak estimates the size of the freight market in Asia to reach $1.5 trillion.”The partnership with Kodiak will help accelerate the commercialization of self-driving truck technology in Asia,” Shin Jung-ho, head of SK Inc.’s digital investment center, was cited as saying in a press release.

Wadiz Advances AI Personalized Recommendation Service

Source: Aving Global Network

Wadiz (CEO Hyesung Shin) announced that it will launch an’AI Personalized Recommendation Service’ that recommends projects of interest based on customer funding experience data.Through this, supporters can more easily find projects they are interested in, and makers are more exposed to interested customers even if they are not popular projects, increasing funding participation and getting practical help in securing customers.

Previously, if recommendations were made based on the project that users accessed, this AI introduction provides personalized recommendation services in real time by comprehensively analyzing activity data experienced in the crowdfunding process such as notification request, support signature, likes, and participation in funding.

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