Will the next wave of Silicon Valley innovation come from Korea?
It wouldn’t be surprising. Korean technology companies are expanding their Silicon Valley presence. In July, Samsung broke ground on its new Silicon Valley headquarters in San Jose and also launched a Startup Accelerator in downtown Palo Alto. South Korean venture capital investments are on the rise and new government initiatives are sending young technology companies to Silicon Valley for hands on mentorship, training, and exposure to the US market. South Korea was among the most represented countries in our latest batch of international startups and South Korean portable DJ hardware company JD Sound grabbed the top spot at our EXPO, then secured a major partnership with a US company (teaser alert – we will announce this news soon).
Robin and Hans from JD Sound rocking it up “Plug and Play style” at our recent EXPO
Can South Korea innovate like Silicon Valley or is this just another passing trend? Consider this:
- South Korea is the most “connected” country with broadband penetration over 100% (We had to stat check that fact. Sure enough, 100.6 broadband subscriptions for every 100 people).
- There are nearly twice as many Korean startups (28,193) as there were 4 years ago (15,401).
- The South Korean government is investing $2.9 billion in funding for venture companies.
A wired nation with a rapidly growing community of entrepreneurs, plenty of funding, and a government-sponsored bridge to Silicon Valley is a recipe for large scale disruption. I will be heading to Seoul in a few weeks for the opening ceremony of the Global Startup Center, yet another initiative by the Korean government to support Korean startups with funding and global partnerships. I’ll do my best to live-blog our insights and discoveries while I’m there, but if you’d like to learn more about Korean entrepreneurialism, beGLOBAL, the leading Korean tech conference, is coming to Palo Alto on September 13.
If you’d like to attend, use the promocode plugandplay-bg for discounted tickets and find me so we can talk trends and sip soju. If you’d like to learn more about Korean entrepreneurism, Plug and Play, or our international startup programs, shoot me an email at Jupe (at) plugandplaytechcenter (dot) com or tweet me @plugandplaytc.
What country do you think will have the biggest impact on Silicon Valley in the coming years?
If you liked what you read, please share it with friends.