A startup accelerator program supported by the South Korean government is offering a unique opportunity for Australia and New Zealand entrepreneurs keen to expand into South Korea and East Asian markets.
The K-Startup Grand Challenge (KSGC) returns for its seventh year, offering a three-and-a-half-month, all-expenses-paid residency to 60 international startups. Through the residency in Seoul, entrepreneurs will be able to access business development teams, consultants, and mentors to help in their localisation efforts.
There are also cash prizes for the top ten startups and USD $120,000 for the winner.
“We believe that the AUNZ startups that join our program bring fresh perspectives and ideas to the table,” said Mr Shin Sung Woo, director of Korea IT Cooperation Center (KICC) in Singapore. “They would get keen insights about running a business in Asia, and we would learn better ways to make our startups appeal to an international market. We are excited to have startups in AUNZ join KSGC 2022.”
At the end of the program, a demo day hosted by the South Korean government will showcase 30 select startups. Those who choose to establish their business in Korea will be able to avail of additional support from the government and other financial incentives.
Applications for the K-Startup Grand Challenge are now open and will close on 31 May 2022. To be eligible, the startup must be less than seven years old. The representative of the startup must be of foreign nationality, with a clear interest in expanding into the Korean and East Asian markets.
Since 2016, the program has helped over 100 startups from across 44 countries set up their base of operations in the country. These startups and businesses come from various fields, including robotics, game development, fintech, and biotechnology.
The accelerator program is part of the South Korean government’s commitment to making the country an innovation and startup hub, having invested around USD $2 billion annually since 2013 towards that goal.
Click here to sign up for KSGC 2022.
Learn more about the program here.