[PANGYO ISSUE] Pangyo Technovalley Weekly News, News from the second week of August

-SK Bio goes to Phase 3 clinical trial with AZ instead of Novavax… Green light on Korean COVID vaccine

SK Bioscience has confirmed that it will conduct the Phase 3 clinical trial of its COVID-19 vaccine with the AstraZeneca (AZ) vaccine of the UK for its comparison instead of Novavax in the US. According to the industry on August 4, SK Bioscience is preparing a “comparative clinical trial” to verify the effectiveness of the COVID-19 vaccine candidate “GBP510 (code name)” as compared to the AstraZeneca vaccine.

The COVID-19 vaccine developed by SK Bioscience is a synthetic antigen method, and the US Novavax vaccine of the same method has been discussed as a comparative clinical target so far. But things got complicated when the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) delayed approval of the Novavax vaccine. As the approval of Novavax is delayed, the industry predicted that the clinical trial for SK Bioscience’s vaccine would also be delayed.

However, the situation changed rapidly when SK Bioscience planned a comparative clinical trial with AstraZeneca. SK Bioscience submitted a Phase 3 clinical trial plan (IND) to the Ministry of Food and Drug Safety at the end of June, and it expects to receive approval as early as next week. If SK Bioscience receives IND approval for Phase 3 clinical trial and proves effective in comparative clinical trials with the AstraZeneca vaccine, this vaccine is highly likely to receive emergency use approval as the first COVID-19 vaccine made in Korea.

-Nexon to create 10 super global IPs and hire 1,000 people later this year

Nexon announced that it would strengthen its position as a top game developer by developing seven new games and creating more than 10 large intellectual property rights (IPs) that could be used in the global market in the future. For this, the company is also planning to hire more than 1,000 new employees after the second half of this year.

Nexon held the “Nexon New Project: Media Showcase” event on August 5. The event was held online, and CEO Lee Jung-heon, who recently was re-elected, introduced future management goals, seven new development projects, the sub-brand “Project Early Stage,” the content making platform “Project MOD,” and the video of ‘KartRider: Drift.”

CEO Lee said, “We plan to develop and foster more than 10 new super IP types that will be carry Nexon in the future, and focus on continuous research and bold investment. For new innovation and growth of the company, we are going to hire more than 1,000 people from the latter half of this year.” He added, “We will greatly strengthen our activities to give back to society, focusing on ‘children’ and ‘coding,’ so that we can repay the love we have received.”

Last year, Nexon found success with several new mobile games and live games, surpassing three trillion won in annual earnings for the first time as a game company in Korea. In addition, based on these achievements, the company gave a salary raise to all employees early this year. It announced a “choice and focus” strategy as it introduced its new compensation system.

– Gyeonggi-do introduces Startup M&A legal support project to lend up to 30 million won per company

Starting this year, Gyeonggi-do will provide professional legal advice and contract verification services for startups that are selling or are planning to pursue M&As to achieve a fair M&A.
The province has conducted a total of 36 expert consultations with the “Gyeonggi Fair M&A Support Center,” which opened at the Pangyo Startup Campus in May, and promoted the “2021 Startup M&A Legal Support Project.” It announced on Aug. 2 that it will recruit 10 companies.
The “M&A Legal Support Project” aims to support a fair M&A completion by providing consulting on the protection of startup values and prevention of technology theft, which is a concern in the process of M&A by startups in the province.
For this, experts from the Gyeonggi Fair M&A Support Center, such as lawyers and accountants, and a brokerage and advisory agency (law firm) with plenty of M&A-related experience are expected to act as consultants and provide more professional advice.
Through the process M&A support center, the province successfully handled 36 cases of M&A-related expert consultations since its opening on May 13.
This year is the first year of the project, and it is currently supporting about 10 companies. Startups that are selected will be provided with up to 30 million won for legal support costs of verifying contract suitability for an M&A.
The application period for participation ends on Aug. 20.

-Hyundai Motor and Kakao to join hands and launch multi-seater taxi “Staria Lounge”

Hyundai Motor Company in partnership with Kakao Mobility launched the multipurpose vehicle (MPV) taxi model “Staria Lounge Mobility” on Aug. 9. The vehicle is scheduled to be unveiled for the first time for users in Korea through “Kakao T Venti” this month.

Hyundai Motor Company conducted a strategic collaboration with Kakao Mobility from the initial development stage of “Staria Lounge Mobility.”

Through Staria Lounge Mobility, Hyundai Motor will respond to the rapidly growing demand for multi-seater mobility services based on platform-based transportation businesses such as Kakao T Venti.

Staria Lounge Mobility is based on the existing Staria Lounge 9-seater Smart Stream LPG 3.5 engine specification, with ▲ Electric side step ▲ 17.3-inch roof monitor ▲ Smart power sliding door ▲ Smart power tailgate, and ▲ Two-row heated seat as standard, further improving the experience for passengers.

The safety of the passengers on Staria Lounge Mobility is also a priority, with the inclusion of ▲Front collision prevention ▲Lane derailment prevention ▲Rear and blind collision prevention ▲Rear cross-collision prevention ▲Lane keeping ▲Smart cruise control ▲Safe exit assistance ▲Three-point seat belts for all seats ▲Seat headrests on all seats ▲and Seven airbags including the airbag that detects rollovers.

Pangyo Technovalley is an innovation hub for global companies comparable to the Silicon Valley in the US, Zhongguancun in China, and STATION F in France. It is an Asia tech hub with 1,259 IT, BT, CT, and NT companies that possess innovative products and technologies. Located just south of the metropolitan area, it provides the best environment for Korean companies to do business with great transportation access and infrastructure.

Various high-tech companies are located in Pangyo Technovalley, and it is occupied by 64,000 full-time employees, many in their 20-30s. In terms of industry, the companies are engaged in information technology, contents technology, biotechnology, and nanotechnology.

With the support of innovative companies with global capabilities such as Kakao, Naver, AhnLab, Krafton, NCSoft, Nexon, and Hancom, companies in Pangyo Technovalley recorded 107 trillion won in sales last year. Investment and infrastructure growth in Pangyo is expected to continue, with the Metaverse hub entering Pangyo this year.

Source: Pangyo Techno Valley Official Newsroom

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