facebook youtube blog instargram


ASEAN-Korea Centre

Organization Activities News & Media Resources

News & Media

‘ASEAN-Korea Startup Week’ awarded future unicorns from ASEAN and Korea

No.PR/20-24Date7 December 2020
ContactProgram Inquiries: Kim Hye-ji, Senior Officer, TIU (02-2287-1127 hjkim@aseankorea.org)
Press Inquiries: Hwang Jiseon, Senior Officer, IDU (+82-2-2287-1149, hjs@aseankorea.org)
ASEAN-Korea Centre is an International Organization mandated to promote economic and socio-cultural cooperation between ASEAN Member States and Korea.

‘ASEAN-Korea Startup Week’ awarded future unicorns from ASEAN and Korea

- ASEAN-Korea Centre held the ‘ASEAN-Korea Startup Week: Online Challenge Final (Dec. 2-3)’ online -

Seoul, Korea - The ASEAN-Korea Centre (Secretary General Lee Hyuk), together with the Gyeonggi Center for Creative Economy & Innovation (GCCEI, CEO Shin Hyunsam), organized the final round of the ‘ASEAN-Korea Startup Week: Online Challenge’ on 2-3 December 2020. Due to enhanced social distancing measures in the greater Seoul area, the program was held in the online format.

During the two-day event, 18 early-stage startups pitched their business ideas through video and had virtual Q&A sessions with venture capitalists and accelerators from Korea and abroad. Four finalists, selected on the basis of their pitches and Q&A performance, were awarded during the ceremony on the second day. All activities were live-streamed on ASEAN-Korea Centre YouTube channel, receiving an average of about 100 views.

The first place went to Village Link of Myanmar, which provides a holistic platform for agricultural communities in Myanmar. Coconut Silo of Korea which is building the ultimate platform to connect cargo owners, logistics companies, and truck drivers and Doclink Indonesia, which offers a mobile healthcare services app to improve the quality of lives in rural areas took second and third place, respectively. Fourth place went to Shopping-D of Lao PDR which is procuring a wide array of products by providing opportunities for small business owners to sell their products online.

The four awardees were granted cash prizes: 10,000 USD for 1st place, 5,000 USD for 2nd place, 3,000 USD for 3rd place, and 2,000 USD for 4th place. Yoon Young-joon, CEO of Covent XL Partners (VC) and one of the judges, said “This event was very useful and helpful to understand the ecosystem of startup in this area.” He added, “I cannot await to see all these startups to grow hugely.”

Secretary General Lee Hyuk, in his video congratulatory remarks, noted, “ASEAN today is known as the breeding ground for startups and is already home to nine unicorns. The total corporate value of these nine ASEAN unicorns is USD 46.5 billion, significantly exceeding that of the eleven unicorns in Korea, which is USD 30 billion. Especially during the COVID19 pandemic, the ASEAN region is witnessing a surge in investment in its homegrown startups, while Korea is also increasing its R&D budget to foster startups in the contactless world.” He added, “I hope that this event will serve as a valuable platform to expand cooperation and seek new business opportunities between ASEAN and Korean startups.”

Since 2018, the ASEAN-Korea Startup Week has been organized by the ASEAN-Korea Centre, in cooperation with the GCCEI and the Korean Ministry of SMEs and Startups, with the aim to nurture homegrown startups in ASEAN and Korea and facilitate business collaborations in the sector. This year, the ASEAN Coordinating Committee on Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises (ACCMSME)* has also joined as a partner of the program.

*ACCMSME is an organizing committee under the ASEAN Secretariat, composed of high-level representatives from 10 ASEAN Member States to discuss policies related to SMEs in the region.

ASEAN and Korea to team up to nurture homegrown IT startups ‘The 8th ASEAN Connectivity Forum’ to highlight ASEAN-Korea Partnership in the Post COVID-19 era