[PANGYO ISSUE] Pangyo Technovalley Weekly News, News from the Second week of December

-Kakao Group Acquires Grip Company for 180 billion won

Kakao group acquired the South Korean live-commerce company Grip Company to bolster its competitiveness in the commerce sector.

The South Korean IT giant announced on December 2nd that it purchased about 50% of Grip Company’s shares with around 180 billion Korean won.

Grip Company launched its live-commerce platform Grip on February of 2019. Currently, the platform has about 17 thousands sellers with 100 billion Korean won of accumulated turnover.

The company has been advancing its B2B live-commerce solution business Grip Cloud as well. The company recently began to provide the solution to Qoo10 Japan, a Japanese e-commerce platform, which was its first step into the global market. It aims to provide its services to the U.S. market by the first half of next year.

Kakao group is planning to bolster its strength in the commerce sector and build an environment where it and small business owners can benefit together based on the integration of the competitive platform Grip and scalability and technology of Kakao Group. It also plans to focus on the building of an open live-commerce environment where anyone can easily join so that South Korea’s small businesses can find more sales channels at home and abroad.

Grip Company CEO Kim Hanna said, “We decided to work with Kakao group to make a global no.1 service.” She added, “We will realize our vision of the world where everyone can sell by working with Kakao.”

-SK Bioscience to create a Nobel Prize in the vaccine industry

SK Bioscience would create a Nobel Prize for vaccine which would be awarded to people and organizations that make groundbreaking contributions the global vaccine industry every year along with the International Vaccine Institute.

SK Bioscience announced on the 30th that it held a signing ceremony with the institute to create the “Park Man-Hoon Prize,” which would be awarded to people and organizations at home and abroad that made a significant contribution to the development of the vaccine industry along. The prize is named after the late Park Man-Hoon, former vice president who was a pioneer of domestic cell-based vaccines, to honor his achievements on research and development.

Both organizations decided to form the group of less than eight professional judges, including the director general of the International Vaccine Research Institute, in order to award the prize on a regular basis. It is planning to evaluate nominees and award the prize by receiving yearly recommendations of individuals or organizations that made a significant contribution to the industry.

SK Bioscience would make a donation of 200 million won every year and the first prize would be awarded on April 25th of the following year, the first anniversary of late vice president Park Man-Hoon’s passing. Jerome Kim, director general of the International Vaccine Research Institute, Lee Mi-Hae, wife of the deceased Park, and Ahn Jae-Yong, president of SK Bioscience, paid their respects in the signing ceremony and pledged to continuously work together in order to help talented people produce results.

In September, SK Bioscience and the bereaved family of the late Park Man-Hoon created “Park Man-Hoon fellowship fund” to the his alma maters, the Seoul National University Department of Biological Sciences and Boseong High School, and said that they would foster leaders of the bio industry in South Korea.

-GBSA is Building a Pangyo Test-Bed for AI

The Gyeonggido Business & Science Accelerator (or GBSA) announced on December 2nd that it would begin the test-bed building project for AI technology demonstrations.

The test-bed project will enable AI firms in Pangyo Techno Valley to easily use Gyeonggi-do’s infrastructure in the area for testing and proving their new products and services. The test-bed will provide Pangyo citizens with an opportunity to experience new technologies while supporting the fast commercialization of innovative ideas.

The project is led by the Ministry of Science and ICT and managed by the National IT Industry Promotion Agency. The central government will inject a total of 19.5 billion Korean won over the next three years through 2023. The fund will be handled by the Gyeonggi-do government.

Having been selected for the project, the GBSA publicly revealed the AI projects for the demonstration test-bed in July.

The 7 selected projects covered the AI-plus-mobility sector with the “smart crosswalk for pedestrians’ safety” and the “smart driver monitoring system for safe driving”, the living sector with the “AI-based skin and scalp condition check system” and the “AI-based immersive content” and the disaster prevention sector with the “AI-based unmanned security service for households”, the “AI-based valley/stream monitoring system” and the “AI-based industrial safety management service”.

The GBSA’s the fourth industrial revolution division Director Chung, Kwang-yong said, “We will continuously work to support testing and commercializing of AI technologies based on the AI demonstration test-bed that is under construction.”

-NHN to hold a tech conference “NHN FORWARD” online

NHN announced on the 2nd that it will hold a tech conference called “NHN FORWARD” online on the 14th.

NHN FORWARD, which marks its fourth anniversary this year, is a forum in which business divisions within NHN share their major technologies and experience with developers around the world under the slogan “Small Steps, Big Difference.”

In this year’s event, a keynote speech will be given focused on cloud tech, NHN’s biggest service. Kim Myung-Shin, Chief Technology Officer of the cloud division of NHN, is expected to introduce the future of NHN’s cloud business and technology centered around OpenStack, which is being created along with other countries around the world under the topic of “The era of cloud by default.”

Also, a total of 21 presentation sessions including cloud, machine learning, big data, gaming and open source will be prepared. How to use facial recognition in the era of contactless services, how to read trends using data, how to leave work after creating an instruction mail in just 10 minutes using a storybook, how to do live coding easily and quickly using notification – one of the biggest solutions of NHN Cloud, and machine translation made easy using open source are just some of the presentations.

Participation registration is open until the day of the event, the 14th of this month on the FORWARD official website. Since there is no limit to the number of participants, anyone can freely take part in the event.

Source: Pangyo Techno Valley Official Newsroom