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[StartupRecipe] South Korea’s Government Backs Robot Startups for Unicorn Status

#Weekly Funding Overview

[May. 22 ~ May. 26 ]

The total funds raised by Korean startups of this week is KRW 83.55 billion.

TefaroboticsIndustrial robotics solution-SeedFuture Play
Music cowMusic copyright60 billionStick Investment
LiveanywhereTravel5 billionSeries AA Ventures, Blue Point Partners, Ajou Continuum, SV Investments, Goodwater Capital
PlaytagAI behavior analysis4 billionPre-Series ACJ Investment, BNK Venture Investment, DSC Investment, KB Investment
BosalpimSilver care-GrantTIPS
SpacewavyModular Construction3.5 billionSeries AHyundai Livart, KODIT, SK Securities, Golden Oak Investments
SPBTFoodtech-SeedThe Invention Lab
Hide me pleaseFoodtech-SeedThe Invention Lab
OasisbusinessFintech5 billionSeries AThe Wells Investment, Roy Investment Partners, Infobank, Hana Bank, DLE&C
Rapport tableFood commerce3.5 billionSeries AFuturePlay, SoftBank Ventures, Bass Investments
RadahaimBio400 millionCoolidge Corner Investment
Field mentorGolfer matching-SeedKimgisa lab, Angel investor
AdddAd tech-KODIT
Goodgang labs3D avatar communication platform-Kakao Investment
LsbioFood-Pre-Series ANew Paradigm Investment
maumjueMental health2 billionPre-Series ACapstone Partners, Medicare, ESG Impact Investment Association, Jones & Rocket
Namdo sobanLocal Mealkit150 millionSeedJnuholdings

Major Funding

  • Music copyright startup Music Cow has raised KRW 60 billion in investment, totaling KRW 214 billion. With 20,000 songs for trade, 1.2 million members, and a transaction volume of 400 billion won, the company plans to expand its overseas operations.
  • Oasis Business has secured a KRW 5 billion investment. The company specializes in addressing information asymmetry in the construction real estate market and employs AI algorithms to estimate commercial real estate sales. With this investment, Oasis Business intends to enhance its technology and expand into global markets.
  • Liveanywhere, an accommodation recommendation service for one-month stays, has received KRW 5 billion in funding. With over 11,000 properties worldwide, generating an annual transaction value of KRW 14 billion and 1.3 million app downloads.

#Trend Analysis

South Korea’s Government Backs Robot Startups for Unicorn Status

The South Korean government has made an exciting announcement, signaling its unwavering support for the growth of robot startups and their journey towards achieving unicorn status through the Super startup 1000+ project. Over the past year, as funds have flowed into B2B manufacturing, investments in robot startups, primarily driven by service robots, have been pouring in. This year, with the government strategically backing robotics startups for the first time, the growth trajectory is expected to gain significant momentum.

Despite the investment winter, there has been a substantial influx of funds into related startups this year. The surge in investment in robot startups can be attributed to the rising intelligence of robots, powered by advancements in technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) and autonomous driving. Consequently, robots are finding their way into a multitude of fields, ranging from industrial sites to logistics and services, driving the increase in investment.

As of May, the most well-funded robotics startup in Korea was Big Wave Robotics, securing a staggering 9.8 billion won in investment. Big Wave Robotics operates Marosol, a groundbreaking Robot-as-a-Service (RaaS) platform that leverages customer-specific situations and environments to recommend tailored robot solutions. Users can simply capture an image of the process they wish to automate, upload it, and Marosol’s advanced algorithms analyze a vast automation database comprising over 20,000 cases. It then connects users with the best suppliers and products, ensuring optimal outcomes.

Meanwhile, Nowrobotics, an industrial robot developer, is setting its sights on listing on the KOSDAQ within this year. The company specializes in crafting robots utilized across diverse industries such as automobiles, semiconductors, electronics, food, and pharmaceuticals.

Service robots designed to enhance kitchen efficiency are also captivating attention in the market. Wave Lifestyle Tech, a pioneering robot-based kitchen operation service company, focuses on developing robots and artificial intelligence technologies that automate various kitchen operations. With ongoing collaborations with over 20 domestic and foreign food brands, Wave Lifestyle Tech has ambitious plans to expand its business globally in the future. Another notable player in the robot kitchen startup arena is Aniai, which has successfully developed an AI-powered robot called Alpha Grill, specializing in cooking hamburger patties. Currently deployed in domestic handmade burger franchises, Alpha Grill showcases Aniai’s dedication to revolutionizing the culinary landscape. Additionally, Future Kitchen presents an unmanned automated robot kitchen that streamlines kitchen efficiency through automatic food ordering and cooking.

Furthermore, Teparobotics, having recently secured early-stage investment, is tackling the shortage of robot engineers head-on by developing low-code solutions. Their mission is to simplify industrial robot control, making it more accessible to individuals from all walks of life.

With investments pouring into robotics startups across various sectors, coupled with technological advancements and government support policies, the future of the robotics market is poised for further growth and expansion.

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