Weekly VentureSquare Stories are summaries of some of the week’s top posts relating to the Korean startup and venture Industry.
Tablets in Japanese Businesses
According to Japanese market research company Seedplanning’s results, Japanese tablet market sales are set to increase to 3,000,000 with 80% of those sale being iPads.
In order to indicate the changing of seasons in Japanese cooking, leaves and flowers are often used for decorations. Irodori, a business which sells and supplies these decorations have been using Samsung Galaxy tabs in their work. The company is able to control their supply and demand by contacting contracted farmers which have been connected to networks in the nature surrounded village of Gamikatsu. The business model has received attention throughout Japan and internationally for the success it has shown in helping revitalize an elderly society. The story was also reported a lot throughout the Korean media and even a book called “Miracle of the Leaf, Irodori” was published.
Japanese Airline ANA also introduced Apple iPads to their company to help improve the quality of their service. In cooperation with Softbank, ANA announced that they were to buy 6,000 iPads and distrubute one to all their flight attendants. In order to improve their service quality and productivity, ANA plans to redesign the way they train their staff by digitalizing their manuals.
The Social Entrepreneurs Conference 2011
On the 18th of October, Beautiful Store held the ‘The Social Entrepreneurs Conference 2011’ at Sungkyunkwan University. This year’s conference the topic was ‘Society Making Social Enterprises” and featured speeches from international guest speakers. The conference largely helped those working in the social enterprise sector gather good information for benchmarking by applying experiences and information from other countries to their companies. One thing said at the conference which stayed with me was, “Being an enterprise which can value both society and finances at the same time in order to play your part as a social enterprise.” No matter how well-meaning a social enterprise tries to be, if they place more focus on society than their finances, the company will not be able to stay in business.
A Liter of Light
In the Philippines a campaign to bring light into the homes of poor families is well underway. The campaign called Isang Litrong Liwanag which means ‘A Liter of Light’ involves cutting holes in the roofs of houses and then placing a 1/1.5 liter bottle into the hole. The bottle is filled with water and bleach which refracts the sunlight into the room below. The bottles can used for up to five years as the bleach prevents algae from forming. The project which originated from students at MIT, has already placed light into 10,000 homes in Manilla and neighbouring Luzon. The bottles emit approximately 55-60 watts of light and by 2012 the project plans to have them installed in over a million homes.
Startups & People
For startups, finding good people is the most important thing. Whether a company is big or small, they are all fighting to find the best people. Particularly in Korea where job searchers are lining up to get into major companies, startups on the other hand are finding it harder to find good people. Here are 10 ways a startup can find good people from Korean startup CEOs.
1. Let people know that your company is worth working for.
2. Make the ‘Job Offer’ noticable.
3. Put yourself in a place surrounded by potential applicants
4. Great employees are people who trust what your company is doing.
5. Look for people who are suitable for startups.
6. Don’t simply look for experience. Look for young employees with good potential.
7. Let your team recommend other people.
8. Set incentives for your team.
9. If there is nobody you are interested in, wait for better people.
10. Respect the interviewee. They could be your customer in the future.
Youth Venture Summit
Youth Venture Summit in Tokyo is an event aimed at connecting the world venture ecosystem to enhance the global expansion of startups. Korean startups are invited to join the program which has over 100 Japanese entrepreneurs, venture capitalists and key players in the IT industry. The summit will be held for the 3 days from November 28-30. Key speakers include Masahiko Honma, General Partner of Incubate Fund and Richard Min, the Co-Founder and CEO of Seoul Space. The event will be a great opportunity for Korean startups to network internationally and pitch their company to a new audience.