Startup Junkie has formed a new partnership to test new initiatives with Korean tech companies in Northwest Arkansas.
The Fayetteville-based entrepreneurial support organization is collaborating with the Korean International Trade Association (KITA) on startup testbed initiatives, as part of an endeavor called the Arkansas Korean Alliance (AKA). This collaboration will connect Korean startups to clients and domestic venture capital firms in Arkansas.
This marks the first joint startup program between Korea and Northwest Arkansas.
“Creating a strong bridge between the Northwest Arkansas venture ecosystem and strategic partners in Seoul, South Korea can be a game changer for both regions,” Startup Junkie Consulting founder and managing director Jeff Amerine said in a statement. “We see this as a first tangible step in building a robust two-way bridge for innovative Korean ventures looking for a North American gateway and for United States ventures looking for an Asian Pacific gateway. We are excited about the future prospects for both regions.”
Eleven startups will be participating in the first cohort of technology companies. In total, these companies have raised roughly $32 million in funding. Collectively, the cohort consists of 226 full-time entrepreneurs.
The cohort companies include Lounge Lab, Mobidoo, Nota, OddConcepts, PiQuant, PureSpace, SeaVantage, SolidWare, SSenStone, WeavAir and Wright Brothers.
Through the testbed program, Startup Junkie will help South Korean startups and their product offerings to U.S. retailers and other companies. In addition, the organization will provide venture capital information for the United States, South Korea and the Asia-Pacific region.
“There is a surplus of world class startups thriving domestically in Korea, and many of them have matured to become true global competitors with solutions that any international enterprise would want to get their hands on,” Louis Diesel, Startup Junkie Consulting’s Head of Asia, said. “Combining that with Startup Junkie’s HQ being in Northwest Arkansas, and all the great enterprise relationships on our side, this partnership brings a geographic arbitrage situation with in-house teams on the ground both in the U.S. and in Korea.”