[Pangyo tech] Kakao founder launches charity foundation, ‘Brian Impact’

By Kim Jae-heun

Kakao founder Kim Beom-su has officially launched a private charity foundation called “Brian Impact,” which he had promised to do, after vowing in February to donate over half of his fortune to charitable causes.

Kim received approval from the Ministry of Science and ICT to establish the organization last month and recently completed the process of constituting the five members of the board of directors. The constituents are the chairman himself, Bear Better CEO Kim Jung-ho, Ashoka Korea CEO Lee Hye-yeong, psychiatrist Chung Hye-shin and actor Lee Yoon-mi.

All five members have personal ties to Kim.

Bear Better CEO Kim is one of the founding members of IT giant Naver, who worked with Chairman Kim together in the past at IT companies Samsung SDS and NHN.

Ashoka Korea is where Kim donated a total of 50,000 Kakao shares for education-related purposes.

Psychiatrist Chung worked with Kim on running a public campaign to help improve people’s mental health.

Actor Lee became a friend of Kim through charity events they participated in for long time in the field of children’s welfare.

Brian Impact was founded with the aim of helping talented young people in the field of IT. Kim believes they are the ones to lead the AI sector, which he hopes to use in solving social problems, in the future.

Kim used his English name, Brian, for the title of his charity foundation.

Kim’s fortune is estimated at 10 trillion won ($8.9 billion), based on Kakao’s stock valuation. He has vowed to give away half of it during his life.

The chairman is said to have raised about 500 billion won for the foundation by selling 4.3 million Kakao shares recently.

“I want to run thls foundation like a project. Every year, I want to fix the budget that I will spend on yearly projects to reach that goal. That budget will be in the 100 billion won range annually,” Kim said.

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 → Asia Innovation Hub Pangyo Techno Valley 2021 News