South Korean contest seeks startups to battle it out

The "K-Startup Grand Challenge (KSGC 2021)" is accepting applications from small businesses and startups wishing to kick start their journey in the heart of South Korea. The submission deadline is June 15.

photo courtesy of K-Startup Grand Challenge

Organised by the Korean government to promote collaboration and the exchange of ideas among startups from Korea and around the world, the global startup competition is set to bring in revolutionary wide-ranging startups to South Korea and aid the businesses to grow in the thriving Asian market.

It is open to any fields of businesses with creative ideas. The top 60 global startup teams will be invited to South Korea to grow their businesses in a 3.5 month accelerator programme starting in August.

The organisers will cover expenses, provide free office and project space, arrange support from Korean interns and offer mentorship from Korean leaders, as well as networking opportunities with like-minded conglomerates.

The programme promises extended support from distinguished South Korean companies including Samsung, LG, Hyundai and Lotte, allowing startups to introduce themselves among an extensive network of international corporate mentors, founders and investors from a broad spectrum of expertise.

The startups will be co-located at the Startup Campus of Pangyo Techno Valley in the heart of Seoul. At the booming hotspot, businesses will be furnished with cutting-edge R&D labs, and given pitching lessons, personalised training sessions, coaching on South Korean and Asian business culture, as well as business affairs like patents, accounting regulations and tax laws.

The top 30 teams will be chosen to take part in the Demo Day and settlement programme in November. The top 10 finalists will be awarded total grants up to US$320,000 (10 million baht).

The competition has been applauded for its impartial selection process, participating organisations' competence and passion. The selection is based on the level of creativity in each startup, their business concept, technologies, as well as their desire to base their business in Korea.

Last year, 2,648 startups from 118 countries competed to be selected for the 2020 K-Startup Grand Challenge.

Interested applicants must be a part of a global startup that has been established within the past seven years to apply. Technology-based startups must have a prototype or product/service and be at the initial investment stage.

Visit k-startupgc.org.

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