Hannover, Germany. South Korea is currently in the limelight as the venue for the 2018 Winter Olympics. And the repeated success of the Korean high-tech industry routinely places Korean companies among the "gold, silver and bronze finalists" in global business as well. Along with Japan and China, South Korea is one of the world's leading technology hotspots.
South Korea's success here is no coincidence, with the government in Seoul investing more money in research and development in relation to gross domestic product than almost any other industrialized nation. According to the Korean Ministry of Science and ICT (MSIP), this expenditure amounted to around USD 62 billion in 2016, putting South Korea in fifth place in a worldwide OECD comparison behind the United States, China, Japan and Germany. South Koreans are moreover considered extremely Internet-savvy, with 92 percent of them enjoying Web access with data transfer rates that many a German company or consumer could only dream of.
Up-and-coming companies from the megacities of Seoul, Busan or Daegu are reluctant to show their cards to other nations - especially when it comes to promising concepts with the potential to turn these startups into future global players. But for this year's CEBIT, with its lively business festival concept, the Korea Innovation Centre Europe (KIC Europe) is making an exception. Launched last year in Berlin, the initiative is planning to bring seven South Korean startups to Hannover to showcase their ideas at the special "scale11" display in Hall 27.
According to KIC Europe, the startups will feature pioneering concepts in the fields of artificial intelligence, augmented reality and biotechnology. More details on the seven exhibitors appearing at CEBIT will be revealed in a few weeks' time by KIC Europe, an organization supporting Korean startups through its offer of innovation cooperation proposals, incubator opportunities and assistance in technology transfer and marketing.
The scale11 concept of bringing together young companies with like-minded people, investors and decision-makers from established enterprises was enthusiastically received last year, with than 400 startups presenting their new business models and product ideas at CEBIT 2017. By winning the participation of several South Korean high-potentials, scale11 has now underscored its role as a leading international startup platform - which will also receive its own TV format in 2018, with coverage of the most exciting minds, themes and background info from the startup community broadcast one hour a day every day of the show.