South Korea-based accelerator and fund network SparkLabs Group is launching a US$50 million fund called SparkLab Ventures.
SeAH, a leading business group in South Korea and Korea Development Bank/Multi-Asset, which is a subsidiary of Mirae Asset, the largest asset manager in South Korea with over US$100 billion assets under management, invested in the fund.
SparkLab Ventures will focus on Series A and Series B rounds and will target primarily Korean startups. Its secondary focus will be startups in Southeast Asia.
SparkLabs Ventures’ aim is to grow companies that have the potential to expand globally.
“Finding companies of global capacity, generating rich deal flow, adding real values post investment are becoming more and more critical to the success of venture investments,” said Brian Kang, Co-founder and Managing Partner of SparkLabs Ventures, in an official press release.
Kang was a founding member of Samsung Ventures. He was also CEO & Chairman of the Board at Softbank-affiliated and NASDAQ-listed gaming company Gravity.
Chris Koh, Co-founder of major South Korean e-commerce platform Coupang, which received US$1 billion in funding from SoftBank, will also be part of SparkLab Ventures’ team.
The two duo will be joined by Rob Das, Co-founder and former Chief Architect of NASDAQ-listed operational intelligence company Splunk, and John Suh, CEO of legal advisory platform Legalzoom. Das and Suh will join SparkLabs Ventures as part-time partners.
The fund will also have a team of advisors, including former Congressman Mike Honda, who served in the US Congress from 2001 to 2017; David Lee, Co-founder and Managing Partner of Refactor Capital; and Nadiem Makarim, Co-founder and CEO of Go-Jek.
“We believe we have assembled the best team to service entrepreneurs in Korea since all of us have built companies from the ground up in Korea and the US,” said HanJoo Lee, Co-founder of SparkLabs, in a press statement.
SparkLabs’ first fund, SparkLabs Global Ventures, was first launched in 2013. It has made 59 investments in 48 companies. According to crunchbase, one of these companies has gone public, and five others have been acquired.
SparkLabs’ accelerator launched in Taiwan last week, after having recently expanded to Beijing, China focusing on IoT and Smart City solutions. SparkLabs will launch a fintech-focussed accelerator in Hong Kong next year.
Image Credit: SparkLabs