Team Europe, the German startup accelerator which recently opened a branch in Seoul, held a blogger press conference at Platoon on the 17th of July. Bloggers and startup companies who attended the event showed a keen interest in the background of Team Europe’s entrance into the Korean market and the accelerator’s first investment in the startup “Yogiyo”.
Team Europe established their Asia-Pacific branch in Seoul and are showing a strong interest in the region. Branch manager Ludolf Ebner-Chung, said that Team Europe can contribute to Korea’s startup community and bring forth successful models to revitalize it. To achieve this, Chung announced that they would be pairing up with Korean accelerator Fast Track Asia. He also promised to be active in encouraging entrepreneurs in Korea.
Chung said that Team Europe is accepting company proposals, introductions through e-mail and investment offers from company websites, but explained that there are restrictions on the investment range. Team Europe usually limits its investment to B2C companies which offer services related to the social, mobile or commerce industry.
Chung plans on helping entrepreneurship in Korea by working together with different groups and ultimately help startups who receive investment grow and become successful. He added, “Even 5 years ago in Germany young people dreamed of going to large companies like Siemens or Benz, but as more companies found success through acceleration programs, young people became interested in entrepreneurship.” Chung said he wanted to let young people in Korea know that there are better paths to take than just getting a position in a large company.
Here is a brief summary of the event.
Team Europe has a goal of helping a variety of companies grow in a short space of time. Most companies that Team Europe targets for investment achieve a value of 14 million won within 2-3 years and aim for potential growth that will exceed 1 trillion won after 4-5 years.
Thus, Team Europe is ready to offer support with its team of experts and successful business people who are experienced in management. They are not only limited to one area but have the resources to carry out several launches globally at the same time. They plan of integrate their successful experiences into Korean startups and will use Seoul as a hub in the Asia region.
But why is an incubator model needed? Because startups need to become independent in an environment which makes it difficult and to help strengthen any weaknesses that are holding back the company. As opposed to other venture capital companies who only invest, Team Europe invests and offers support through experience and use of their network on a long-term basis. Putting together special characteristics and good points of both startups and franchises, another goal is to more quickly and systematically help startups focus on growth while reducing risk.
Team Europe’s reason for entering Korea is to find ways to expand the entrepreneurship mindset and find ways for Korean startups to succeed by understanding what kinds of internal restrictions they face. After talking about the new branch in Seoul, Team Europe also introduced Yogiyo, its first company selected for investment. Yogiyo was founded by Na Jewon after selling the social commerce site “SugarDeal” to WeMakePrice. It is an area-based food delivery service which has the special feature of being able to pay online.
Writer: Seungeun Myung