The South Korean Ministry of Science and ICT in collaboration with the National IT Industry Promotion Agency (NIPA), has unveiled ambitious plans to support the growth and development of Software as a Service (SaaS) companies. The initiatives aim to foster promising SaaS companies with global competitiveness, promote their international expansion, and facilitate the distribution and expansion of cloud services for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).
SaaS, which provides software applications as a subscription through the internet, has gained significant momentum globally as businesses increasingly adopt the software-as-a-service model. Recognizing the immense potential of this paradigm shift, the Ministry of Science and ICT is undertaking various support projects in partnership with NIPA to transform domestic SaaS companies into globally competitive entities.
Promising SaaS development and development support
Under the ‘Promising SaaS Development and Development Support’ project, companies selected will receive support for developing and commercializing their cloud services. With a competition rate 3.5:1, 50 companies were selected at the end of June.
The major promotion areas are
① SaaS startup (5 billion won/USD 3.8 million),
② SaaS conversion of existing SW (8 billion won/USD 6.1 million),
③ SaaS advancement/intelligence (7 billion won/USD 5.3 million), and
④ K-Cloud SaaS (5 billion won/USD 3.8 million).
With a budget of 25 billion won (USD 19 million), this project aims to promote SaaS startups, facilitate the conversion of existing Software into SaaS, advance SaaS intelligence, and support K-Cloud SaaS development. Leading cloud infrastructure companies such as Naver Cloud, KT Cloud, NHN Cloud, and Kakao Enterprise will collaborate with selected SaaS companies to ensure smooth progress.
In July, an event is also planned to bring together domestic cloud infrastructure companies and SaaS companies participating in the project to seek ways to cooperate.
Global SaaS Fostering Project
The “Global SaaS Fostering Project” will see partnerships between 12 domestic SaaS companies and global tech giants like Amazon Web Services, Microsoft, Oracle, and Cybozu. This collaboration aims to develop and commercialize SaaS solutions to enter overseas markets. With a budget of 5.5 billion won (USD 4.2 million), this project has achieved remarkable results over the past seven years, including commercializing 122 SaaS products and market entry into 23 countries.
Dissemination and diffusion of cloud services for SMEs
Furthermore, the “Dissemination and Diffusion of Cloud Services for SMEs” project offers comprehensive support for small and medium-sized enterprises seeking to adopt cloud services. This project provides consulting services and covers service fees for cloud adoption. Demand companies from various industries, including information and communication, manufacturing, professional services, retail, healthcare, and construction, have already begun receiving support. They receive tailored consulting based on their industry and business situation and can choose from 591 services offered by 407 domestic cloud companies. SaaS accounts for most services at 90.7%, followed by IaaS and PaaS. In particular, this year, 15 super-large AI APIs are also supported to provide AI SaaS development opportunities using super-large AI models.
Eom Yeol, Director General of Artificial Intelligence-based Policy at the Ministry of Science and ICT, expressed his enthusiasm for the projects. He stated, “The competitive rate for the Promising SaaS Development and Development Support project this year reached 10:1, highlighting the growing interest in SaaS revitalization support. We will actively support software companies transitioning to SaaS and promote the global advancement of excellent domestic SaaS solutions.”
With these comprehensive initiatives, South Korea is poised to strengthen its position in the global SaaS market and foster innovation in cloud services, driving economic growth and digital transformation in various sectors.
Promising SaaS Development and Development Support Project:
|Company||SaaS Development Focus|
|Studio Lab||Fashion detail page production|
|Magic Ecole||DT talent competency reinforcement|
|Data Crush||Subtitle production/translation solution|
|Chiloen||AI composition technology for background music|
|Finhai||Financial risk management system|
|Namdo Market||Customized ordering and settlement automation|
|Rebuilder AI||3D vision AI technology|
|Founder||AI-based video recommendation for MICE industry|
|Tware Lab||Electric/electronic product test data creation|
|ISG||ESG-specific SaaS based on AI and big data|
Global SaaS Fostering Project Partners:
- Amazon Web Services
|Project||Budget (in billion won)||Number of Companies/Services|
|Promising SaaS development and nurturing support||25||50|
|Global SaaS fostering project||5.5||12|
|SME cloud service distribution and expansion||12.95||700|