Meet Seoul-based accelerator SparkLabs’ 19th batch of startups • TechCrunch
Spark Labs Korea, a Seoul-based seed to early stage accelerators, held a trial day Thursday for the group of 19 companies. The final test day marks its 10th year after SparkLabs launched its acceleration program in December 2012. Accelerator Supporting more than 270 startups since its inception in 2012, SparkLabs co-founder and partner Eugene Kim told TechCrunch.
The program consists of two batches per year — one starting in January and the other in June — Kim said, adding that the program is 16 weeks long.
SparkLabs accepts 10 to 15 companies per group and invests up to $100,000 in each startup for 6% equity. Kim noted that the investment is made either with a SAFE (Simple Agreement for Stock Futures) or a share purchase agreement – a decision that the startup has to make.
Throughout its program, SparkLabs provides funding, mentorship, and access to management and legal advisory support for startups. In addition, participating startups will have co-working space, attend weekly classes and have access to four to six mentors with experience in various industries, not only in South Korea but in global regions.
SparkLabs, a member of global accelerator network (Jan), I’ve used international best practices for accelerators from the start, Kim said. He added that her partners and mentors are all former entrepreneurs with global business experience in both the United States and Asia.
The accelerator also runs other government-supported programs such as Tipswhich is a technology incubator program for startups in South Korea, and manages investment funds in later stages, Kim noted.
SparkLabs started in Korea to find and help local Korean startups in the inception stage and help them go global. Although the majority are stationed in Korea, the accelerator program is getting applicants from other countries who are looking or planning to enter Korea or Asia, according to Kim.
When asked if SparkLabs Korea is a subsidiary of SparkLabs GroupIt’s not a group structure, Kim said. Each accelerator entity, such as SparkLabs Korea, SparkLabs Taiwan And the SparkLabs Cultiv8a separate entity with its own accelerator fund.
Kim said in an interview with TechCrunch that because the program focuses on early-stage startups, some teams are focusing or changing their business focus as they try to find a market-appropriate product (PMF).
“Not all teams end up promoting on demo day. If teams feel they want to focus on building their strength or crowd forces, they can choose to show on a later demo day,” Kim said.
Below is a list of nine companies in SparkLabs’ latest batch. The 19th batch ends with a trial day on November 3.
- FitfluxA veterinary telehealth platform that provides an AI-based chatbot for vet clinics and pet owners. It offers two apps that connect vets with their pet patients. The Vetflux app is for pet owners to get the latest information on pet care, while the other app, called Vetflux+, is for veterinarians to organize their workflow.
- AmondycareThe Amondycare app allows mental health professionals to manage their workflows and administrative work from patient appointments to sales.
- YKring: A social app, Kevin’s Club, that helps college students get the most out of their college life outside of the library or dorms. YKring says it enables users to see what’s happening in the community to find clubs or a group of people with similar interests to do activities together. YKring, which launched its service in January, claims to have more than 2,500 users with $35,000 in sales as of October 2022. The monthly subscription fee is around $20.
- Databin: This startup is developing a cooling system for data centers. Its SmartBox service allows thermal management.
- FaceFasket is a fast-paced start-up running an instant grocery delivery company in South Korea.
- Jeffers: Gyverse develops a dry meat refrigerator using the Internet of Things and artificial intelligence. Users can dry beef at home by connecting Gyverse smart devices to their app to monitor temperature and humidity.
- the engine: A 3D motion marketplace that allows users to access and purchase 3D motion data sources for use in the metaverse, games, movies, animation, and augmented reality.
- R-Material: The R-Material platform, called a hybrid generator system, enables solar and wind energy to transform energy sources.
- MyShop Cloud: An online to offline (O2O) platform that wants to digitize the dried fish value chain, from wholesale to retail market. Its service Dasiwoorida, which analyzes dried fish prices and deals, recommends products to customers.
SparkLabs is currently open for applications for the 20th batch program through November 11th. The accelerator will finish its selections in December and look to start the 20th batch in January.
South Korea, Which attracts the third largest amount of venture capital financing in Asia – About $6.45 billion a year – After China and India, it currently has 16 rhinos to date.