Opportunity for Global & Korean startups; ‘SmartCityX’ program by the USA Venture firm Scrum Ventures

As per an estimate, by 2050, 66% of the world’s population is expected to live in urban areas. To meet the challenges of the population’s demand for sufficient supplies of essential resources, a safer environment, sustainable infrastructure, there is an evident need to develop well-planned smart cities. As the world is reeling under the effects of the COVID-19 outbreak, it is now the need of the hour to look towards building more and more smart cities. In a nutshell, a smart city is one where technology plays a vital role in solving complexities and enhancing the quality of life of diverse communities.

An Innovation program for startups in smart city technology

With this vision to encourage and support technology-based startups worldwide, Scrum Ventures, an early-stage venture capital firm based in San Francisco, US, has launched a ‘SmartCityX’ program. SmartCityX is an open innovation program and a global community of stage-agnostic startups representing numerous geographies and industry categories coming together with iconic Japanese corporate brands and industry thought-leaders –– united by a shared vision for making cities more livable, resilient, and sustainable.

​The SmartCityX program is an 11-month long program launched on August 26th, 2020. The program has already identified its ‘early startup acceptances’ with 18 startups from 9 countries. Korean startup Deeping Source Inc. is one of the startups selected for the ‘SmartCity X’ program. The program is accepting applications till November 30th from startups worldwide. The selection process will happen till January 2021, and then the next months till July 2021, startups will get opportunities for business development, networking, partnerships, and fundraising.

SmartCityX accepts startups at all stages and places emphasis on six core verticals:

1) Consumer Products & Service
2) Mobility
3) Smart Building
4) Energy, Resource & Sustainability
5) Connectivity & Infrastructure
6) Social Innovation

Korean startup Deeping Source Inc. selected for ‘SmartCityX’ program

Korean startup Deeping Source Inc. has developed data anonymizing technology, which removes personal information from data while preserving ML’s utility (machine learning) applications. Deeping Source’s technology makes all data privacy-protected and safe-to-use. It is the world’s first such patent in South Korea. It supports image, video, audio, and text. There is a possibility of real-time processing, revert to original, and can be used for new ML models as well as existing ones. The startup is backed by firms like Samsung Venture Investments, Stonebridge Ventures, Mirae Asset Investments, Global Brain and Future Play.

Deeping Source Inc.

Besides Korean startup Deeping Source Inc., the other 17 startups in the “early accepted startup” category are from the USA, UK, Canada, Japan, India, Israel, Indonesia and Mexico. The startups have been selected based on cutting edge technologies that make cities more equitable and inclusive and fall into 6 sub-categories within the smart city space ranging from mobility, energy, connectivity, smart building, and consumer products and services. Spanning from seed to growth stage, these 18 startups have raised a combined total of over $280 million and shown great promise in becoming the world’s next market leaders in this sector.

“These initial members of the SmartCityX startup community illustrate why I’m so excited to be part of the Leadership Circle,” said John Rossant, Chairman of NewCities Foundation and Co-founder and CEO of CoMotion. “Innovation in the city space is not only white-hot; it is also happening on a global basis. And this initial group of startups will likely grow to over 100 through the duration of the application and evaluation phase. I’m truly looking forward to getting to know these companies and others that will be applying prior to the deadline.”

Follow SmartCityX program here,

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