In a much-anticipated event, the South Korea Ministry of SMEs and Startups, in collaboration with the Korea Startup Forum, proudly announces the forthcoming “COMEUP 2023.” Slated from November 8 to 10 at the iconic Dongdaemun Design Plaza (DDP) in Seoul, this marks the festival’s 5th anniversary and is set to outshine previous editions in terms of size, significance, and international representation. With an expected 60% of startups coming from overseas, COMEUP 2023 aptly adheres to its 2023 theme, “We Move the World,” symbolizing its commitment to continuous innovation and a thriving global startup ecosystem.
Bringing Together the Global Startup Community
Since its inception in 2019, COMEUP has evolved into a global startup extravaganza, serving as a crossroads where South Korea’s flourishing startup landscape meets with a worldwide audience. This year, the event is poised to unite innovative startups, visionary investors, and entrepreneurial leaders from 29 countries, signifying a significant rise in participation compared to the previous year.
The surge in international attendance is a testament to the collaborative efforts between the Korean government and various global counterparts. The event’s visitor numbers have been on an upward trajectory: 2019: 21,102; 2020: 59,054; 2021: 50,291; 2022: 57,560
COMEUP 2023 has expanded its reach to 29 countries, compared to 20 participating countries in 2022. This expansion solidifies COMEUP’s dedication to establishing itself as a global startup festival.
Vision for COMEUP 2023
Minister LEE Young of the Ministry of SMEs and Startups underlines the significance of COMEUP 2023 in the era of digital exploration. “The world has entered the ‘digital era of exploration,’ where competition knows no borders. In this new era, the role of startups, with their flexibility, speed, and digital technology, is paramount.” She anticipates that COMEUP 2023 will serve as a platform for Korean startups to engage with the global community and foster international collaborations.
What to Look Forward to at COMEUP 2023?
A prominent feature of COMEUP 2023 is the creation of a “Global Community Zone.” This dedicated zone is the result of COMEUP’s proactive outreach to global startup communities and government delegations from startup-friendly countries, including recent visits to Saudi Arabia and the UAE.
The Global Community Zone will bring together delegates from all corners of the world, including the United States, France, Germany, Switzerland, Indonesia, Cambodia, Senegal, Uganda, and more. It will serve as a hub for investment attraction, with IR pitches and conferences. This year, COMEUP has introduced an online business matching program, facilitating year-round collaboration opportunities crucial for startup growth.
Global CVC Conference – Opening Doors to Investment Opportunities
In 2023, COMEUP will host its inaugural “Global CVC Conference,” featuring participation from over 160 venture capitalists (VCs). This conference, in partnership with the British media company GCV and the Korea Venture Capital Association, aims to drive substantial investments and facilitate international market entry for startups.
Nurturing Innovation: COMEUP Stars
COMEUP 2023 continues its pioneering “COMEUP Stars” initiative, with a focus on discovering and nurturing startups with the potential to become the next unicorns in the world of entrepreneurship. The program provides a unique platform for mentorship, networking, and investment opportunities.
This year’s COMEUP Stars program involves 13 top Korean and foreign VCs and accelerators closely collaborating with 10 promising startups each, offering mentorship and investment opportunities.
Open Innovation Day: Celebrating Two Decades of Collaboration
To mark the 20th anniversary of the Open Innovation Concept, COMEUP 2023 designates the second day of the event (November 9) as “Open Innovation Day.” This day will showcase successful collaborations between large, medium-sized, and startup companies.
Over 20 global firms, including industry giants like NVIDIA, Dassault Systèmes, Hyundai Motor Company, BMW, and Naver Cloud, will present models of collaboration, providing insights into the synergy between startups and established corporations.
Enriching Insights from Esteemed Speakers
COMEUP 2023 will host engaging conference sessions featuring renowned figures from the world of startups and entrepreneurship. The conference’s keynote speaker is Zior Park, a musician, entrepreneur, and the founder of the lifestyle brand SYNDROMEZ, widely known as the K-POP musician
Zior Park in Korea. He is celebrated for his innovative thinking, making him an invaluable source of inspiration for startups aiming to push the boundaries of what’s possible.
In addition to Zior Park, the conference will feature around 60 global speakers, including industry leaders, entrepreneurs, and innovators. A keynote speech will be delivered by Mahdi Shariff, founder of Humble, a data-based deep learning platform, angel investor, co-founder of Stealth, and a 2017 Forbes 30 Under 30 Asia honoree. These speakers will share their experiences and insights into the dynamic world of startups, offering invaluable lessons and motivation for attendees.
COMEUP 2023 transcends geographical boundaries, with foreign panels and speakers offering a global perspective on startups. Notably, the UAE Minister of Economy and the Saudi Arabian Minister of SMEs and Startups will participate, offering insights into the Middle East’s entrepreneurial landscape.
Don’t Miss Out on This Extraordinary Global Startup Festival
For inquiries, please contact: Doyeon Kang at +82-2-6211-9400.
Hosted/Organized/Cooperated by: Ministry of SMEs and Startups & Korea Startup Forum
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