Weekly VentureSquare Stories are summaries of some of the week’s top posts relating to the Korean startup and venture Industry.
The new startup incubator Fast Track Asia has announced Lim Jin-seok as the first person selected to be CEO. Despite the short time for applications over 600 applicants applied for the program, 200 were interviewed by phone, 20 teams had preliminary interviews and 5 teams went through a final interview. Out of the all the potential candidates Im Lim Jin-seok and his team were selected in the end.
Lim has over eight years experience working at a major portal site and in 2010 was promoted to team manager. One thing which stands out about Lim is is his passion to start something new and has previously founded his own startup on three different occasions. In 2005 he developed a brand of new design t-shirts named The Real Movement and in the summer of 2010 as social commerce took off he launched the social commerce meta service Olcoo. Despite being a late-comer, by marketing well and differentiating content while listening to customers the site managed to rank 4th out of all meta social commerce sites. In 2011 he founded the accommodation search engine Resty with co-founders Kim Gi-pung and Kim Jong-hoon. Lim Jin-seok briefly explained his experiences,
“Up until now I’ve founded various companies but nothing has been very successful yet. Though sewing seeds for a company may be easy, I definitely realized how hard it is to get fruit from those seeds. With my experience in the internet business sector and Fast Track Asia’s support I would like to create a valuable service which major portals do not offer.”
One person on the Fast Track Asia team said that “Lim is one with a mind for business” and that he is not afraid to fail – he gained many points from his constant passion and execution of his plans. Lim is currently in talks about his first product.
“At the moment I’m discussing 2 or 3 different items with the Fast Track Asia team. We want something that will give value to our society and improve life through technology. There are many specialized services designed to help society in the US but as of yet there aren’t many in Korea. We are planning to develop the most suitable and valuable item for Korean society.”
SunnyLoft was founded in 2011 by CEO Jung Ju-hwan. Jung said that the name SunnyLoft was chosen because he thinks that great ideas can come to you if you go up into ‘sun filled loft’. SunnyLoft’s main focus is to produce enjoyable and fun products. The company’s two main products at the moment are Qranga and Datepresso. Qranga is a site where users can go to for advice, information and knowledge by asking questions which are then answered by mentors. If someone doesn’t know the answer, then they can forward the question on to another mentor so that the question is not left unanswered. Another site SunnyLoft operates which is aimed at a younger audience is Datepresso. As the name indicates, its an online dating site which has an easy to use interface, in the style of a social network. Datepresso also has its own app on Android and the iOS app is set to be released soon.
Rehoboth is a business incubator which has 20 centers located around Korea. Rehoboth is not simply a business center but a place for businesses to receive support and grow. Budding entrepreneurs and startups receive not only office space but a chance to network with others. Other services include an ‘Any Work’ service which is designed for entrepreneurs who don’t yet have an office. Since it can be awkward if one’s business cards show a residential address — for a fee, Rehoboth will register the company in the business center’s address. One upcoming service is a senior center aimed at those who have retired but still want to pursue their business ideas. Participants may also have the opportunity to get involved with angel investing. Rehoboth plans to open 10 more centers in 2012 and is preparing to expand overseas. Starting from Vietnam, the centers would hire experts who are citizens or long-term residents of the country to provide mentoring and advice. Look out for a more detailed post about Rehoboth in the near future!
2nd Posco Idea Marketplace
Entrepreneurs and investors are invited to the Posco Idea Marketplace to buy and sell ideas!
Time: 2pm, March 23
Venue: 17th Floor, West Wing (서관), Seoul Posco Center
Registration: 1:40 – 2:00 Registration and Exhibit Viewing
Opening: 2:00 – 2:40 CEO / Greeting from SMBA
Session 1: 2:00 – 5:00 Idea Marketplace
Session 2: 2:00 – 5:00 VC Mentoring
Session 3: 3:50 – 5:00 Lecture – Young Ventures CEO
Combined Event: 5:00 – 6:00 Beer Party
- Online: http://onoffmix.com/event/5508
- Phone: 02 3457-5356
- E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org