The Seoul Metropolitan Government is revolutionizing the startup ecosystem with its groundbreaking new Scale-up Center and a massive funding initiative. The Seoul Metropolitan Government has opened its first facility specializing in startup investment, the Seoul Startup Hub Scale-up Center, located in Teheran Valley, Gangnam-gu. This facility is first one in the region that serves as an investment exchange base for private investors, accelerators, and startups. The center will help startups get direct access to investors to attract investment without having to visit them.
The Seoul Metropolitan Government established the Scale-up Center to support startups by utilizing the financial power and know-how of the private sector. This initiative aims to discover excellent startups experiencing investment difficulties due to the current gloomy investor sentiment and actively link them with investors to lead the charge in overcoming the investment ice age. The Scale-up Center is expected to become the heart of the investment ecosystem.
The Scale-up Center consists of two floors, with a total area of 2,740 square meters. The first floor houses a meeting room and a shared workspace, facilitating active exchanges and cooperation between investors and startups. It serves as an investment review base, where startups can receive investment consulting and actual investment quickly.
The second floor is the space for private venture capital firms to move in, and it currently houses five partners with a total fund management scale of 881.6 billion won ($731 million). They plan to achieve an annual investment of 100 billion won ($83.2 million), centering on the Scale-up Center. To support excellent promising companies suffering from the shrinking investment market, the Seoul Startup Hub Scale-up Center will hold investment attraction events, such as joint demo day with private investment institutions. They aim to discover ten competitive companies in the advanced manufacturing and deep tech fields every year and provide business subsidies of up to 50 million won. A dedicated fund worth 1.4 trillion won will also be created to support the scale-up of rapidly growing unicorn companies.
The Seoul Metropolitan Government will support venture loan products for startup funding with IBK Industrial Bank, a funding method that combines loan and investment methods and helps startups recommended by venture investors to quickly secure funds and maintain management rights.
Furthermore, the Seoul Metropolitan Government signed a business agreement with the Korea Financial Investment Association to open a professional education program for corporate fund management and investment and to attract investment by holding a demo day with promising startups in connection with the 557 member companies of the Korea Financial Investment Association.
Mayor Oh Se-hoon, who attended the opening ceremony, passionately stated, ‘The Seoul Startup Hub Scale-up Center is committed to helping startups overcome the harsh winter brought on by the recent global economic downturn, and we believe that open innovation, global scale-up, and tech trade will be the driving forces behind their success.'”