The University of Sheffield is supporting Sheffield City Region partners to develop new links with South Korea, and add entrepreneur and business start up support to a growing list of international collaborations between our countries.
The Yorkshire Accelerator is a partnership between the public and private sectors, and is being led by RIDO's Business Incubation team based at Moorgate Crofts in Rotherham.
The goal is to build a world class programme that can support inward investment opportunities and create a sustainable pipeline of global talent and ideas that will access new international markets after locating to the Sheffield City Region.
This year's pilot programme started on 10 August 2015 and welcomed five start up teams comprising eleven South Korean entrepreneurs, but plans are already being made to accept applications on next year's programme from other international locations as well.
Yorkshire Accelerator is now a member of South Korea's international network of business incubators and accelerators connecting our City Region and TUOS to innovation and start up hotspots including Berlin, San Francisco, New York and Singapore.
Mark Sanderson, Innovation Centres Manager at TUOS said, "By working with the Korean Government as part of their existing global network we can access world class expertise for entrepreneurs joining our programme. We can also use these relationships to expose our students and researchers to new industry connections and opportunities. In the first week of the pilot we have already identified potential areas of support and collaboration for three of the projects here at TUOS. A great example is the potential for Sheffield Robotics to support a UAV start up from Korea called Ultimate Drone."
South Korea invested £7.6bn in the UK in 2014, second in the EU only to the Netherlands, and the UK investment in Korea over the same period was £7.9bn.
Mark added, "We hope that new initiatives such as Yorkshire Accelerator can help to raise awareness and increase commercial activity between Sheffield City Region and Korea, but also allow us to start to explore new mobility and collaboration opportunities for our students and researchers."
Dabriel Choi, M.D. of TRoom Ltd., one of the private sector partners said. "A major attraction for South Korean industry is the University's Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre and the City Region's world class expertise and reputation in manufacturing".
Mr. Choi, who currently represents Hyundai Glovis and LG Electronics LED division added, "This programme and others like it visit will raise South Yorkshire’s profile in South Korea as a manufacturing base and introduce innovative, entrepreneurial Korean companies to the region to create mutually advantageous co-operation”.