K Cube Ventures is the leading early stage venture capital firm in South Korea. Learn more about our portfolio companies and what we do by viewing our 2014 Media Kit.
Frograms’ 19 award-winning engineers and data scientists are
• Tae Hoon Park, CEO: Attended KAIST (“Korea’s MIT”); developed
new services at Korean game developer Nexon
• Kyung Yoon Oh, CTO: KAIST graduate; International Olympiad
in Informatics Gold Medal; ACM-ICPC World Finalist
• Choong Jae Lee: Computer Engineering Ph.D from POSTECH;
Korea Olympiad in Informatics Bronze Medal
• Ha Neul Choi: POSTECH graduate; DEF CON CTF 3rd Place
• Ji Hyung Park: KAIST graduate; Korea Olympiad in Informatics
• Yong Joo Song: KAIST graduate; Korea Olympiad in
Informatics Bronze Medal
• Watcha! has 100 million stars in ratings; Korea’s #1 internet
portal Naver’s movie section has 5 million stars in ratings
• Frograms won the 2nd Place Prize in the Google K-Startup
Competition 2012 for Watcha!
• Pursuing global expansion and new content categories in
WishLink, Inc. was founded by two of Korea’s leading experts
in online shopping.
• Minuk Kim, CEO: Head of Sales Unit of NHN Shopping;
recognized by peers as the “most networked person” in
Korea’s online shopping industry
• Cheonju Seo, CTO: Team leader of the mobile platform
development for Korea’s #3 shopping site, 11street
Less than 1 year since its service launch, monthly revenue
reached nearly $1 million.
‘KakaoStyle’ functions as a mobile fashion ad platform to
retailers and an information service on trends to fashion-
• 100+ top class Korean retailers such as StyleNanda and
Naning9 are registered on KakaoStyle
• Available to Kakao’s 35 million users and as an app
• Currently being launched in China
The Mverse team:
• Shi Hyun Joo, CEO: KAIST graduate; Consultant at Bain &
Company; Co-Founder of Silicon Valley startup ‘StyleSays’
• Tae Eun Kim, Executive: KAIST graduate; Winner of the
Red Dot Award: Design Concept
The ‘Surprise’ app aggregates the latest announcements
about sales at major stores like Nike, Lacoste and Zara for
Mverse plans to add location services to Surprise that will
recognize when a user is nearby or has entered a retailer and
automatically send coupons and new product info via mobile.
Achieved 0.3+million Download just for 2 months
Greenmonster’s CEO Ji Soo Ha is a venture capitalist turned
entrepreneur and his team has a record of developing several
‘Flava’ is a multiplatform journaling service (life log) with a
beautiful mobile UX that makes it easy and enjoyable to
record life’s moments.
• Available in 150 countries
• 1.2 million users since its September 2012 launch
• 65% of users are from overseas (top 3 countries for
overseas usage are China, U.S. and Japan respectively)
More Info: Website
[PCMag] The 100 Best Android Apps of 2013
[Fast Company] 5 FREE APPS TO GET YOU IN THE DOOR,
KEEP YOUR LIFE ON TRACK, AND MUCH MORE
Availability: Global (150 countries)
iTunes Google Play
Vingle was founded by serial entrepreneurs Changseong Ho and
Jiwon Moon, famous husband and wife entrepreneurs who
successfully founded the Silicon Valley startup, Viki, which in 2013
was acquired by Rakuten.
• Jiwon Moon, CEO: M.A. in Education from Harvard University
• Changseong Ho, COO: M.B.A. from Stanford University
‘Vingle,’ an interest-based community platform that allows people to
connect via their shared interest, already has 2 million monthly
visitors coming from over 105 nations, including the U.S., Japan,
Indonesia, and Mexico.
Availability: Global (105 countries)
More Info: Website
Two long-time colleagues at Korea’s largest antivirus software
firm, AhnLab, Inc., combined their technical & business
expertise to found Kids Note. Both are second-time
• Jang Wook Choi, CEO: Technology Team of AhnLab;
Founder of Vault Micro Software
• Joon Yong Kim, CEO: Security Division of AhnLab;
Founder of The First Penguin
The ‘Kids Note’ app, a smart notification service, is the first of
its kind and a clear market leader in its category.
Kids Note is a closed SNS service for real-time
communication between parents and nursery schools.
• 25% of all Korean nursery and preschools (12,000 out of
50,000) use Kids Note
• The second-place app in this category has less than 10%
of the number of downloads compared to Kids Note
Dunamu Founder & CEO Chi Hyung Song is a nationally recognized
top-tier engineer. He was designated to teach Korea’s most talented
engineers as a Mentor in the Korea Software Maestro Program, a
prestigious training system operated by South Korea’s Ministry of
Trade, Industry & Energy. Only 100 of the best software engineers
are chosen annually to participate.
Dunamu CSO Hyung Nyun Kim is the former CEO of Futurewiz, a
mobile finance information and solution company based in Korea.
• Chi Hyung Song, CEO: B.S. in Computer Science & M.A. in
Economics from Seoul National University
• Hyung Nyun Kim, CSO: CEO, Futurewiz
Stocks Plus for Kakao
‘Stocks Plus for Kakao’ allows users to easily check their stock
quotes in real-time through Kakao, Korea’s top mobile platform with
35 million users. It has a social feature through which users can see
which stocks their friends are keeping track of.
Dunamu seeks to offer a one-stop mobile service for conducting all
Recently achieved +0.1 million downloads for 2 months
The WIV Labs team is made up of Korea’s definitive experts
in search engines. Its programmers developed Korea’s #2
search engine, Daum, end-to-end from scratch.
WIV Labs aims to become a leader in the social Q&A field by
providing a service capable of collecting and analyzing the
large-scale amounts of data produced by SNS.
Social Q&A Service, ‘Qaster’
Right now, a huge scope of significant information is produced
by users’ questions and answers on SNS, but it is difficult to
search and find the specific information that you want.
WIV Labs’ new service ‘Qaster’ solves this problem by
collecting and analyzing data from SNS and extracting the
meaningful information found in users’ questions and answers.
The beta version of Qaster was launched at the end of March
Seedpaper offers practical, mobile-based content that helps
regular women enhance their lifestyle. Its newly launched
content brand ‘Self Beauty’ offers easy-to-follow videos &
guides featuring renowned makeup & hair experts.
Self Beauty’s content is available on Kakao’s ‘Plus Friend’
feature, which allows users to receive special content from
artists, brands and publications. With content from prominent
experts such as hair designer Cha Hong and makeup artist
Jung Saem Mool, the response to Self Beauty has been
‘Kakao Page’ is an online marketplace for digital content and
Self Beauty’s ‘Kakao Page’ has also been popular with users.
• Self Beauty became available in Plus Friend in July 2012
and gained 250,000 subscribers within 2 months
• Current number of Plus Friend subscribers is 300,000
• 0.9 Million readers on Self Beauty’s Kakao Page
HealthWave creates animations that make it easy for patients
and caretakers to understand complicated medical
procedures such as breast cancer surgery by watching them
on their smartphones. HealthWave’s CEO, Dr. Hee Doo
Chung, M.D., was a general surgeon at Seoul National
In 2011, HealthWave launched the world’s first information
prescription service called ‘HiChart.’ HiChart has hundreds of
animations that explain how complicated medical procedures
are performed as well as the risks & side effects.
In the past, it may have taken an hour for a doctor to explain
to a patient about a complex surgery with diagrams and
printed materials. In addition to the time this required, there
was often a gap between the understanding that the doctor
wanted to convey and the patient’s actual understanding of
Now when a doctor prescribes a HiChart animation for the
patient to watch on a smartphone, this not only helps the
patient to fully understand the procedure, closing the gap in
understanding, but it also saves time.
• HealthWave has created 900 animations (with exclusive
rights) and about 3,000 more subjects for animations
• HiChart is expanding globally through open beta services
in the U.S., Japan and Singapore
One of Korea’s most recognized icons in fashion design and an
industry expert in digital content have teamed up to found byBox, the
curation commerce service for fashion.
• Se Woon Jurn, CEO: Producer at Cheil Worldwide Inc., where he
was recognized for his successful execution of IPTV content
• Ho Sub Kang, Chief Curator: Professor of Fashion Design at
Hongik University (Korea’s top arts school); Mentor on television
program ‘Project Runway Korea’
byBox is a curation commerce service for boxes of jewelry and
accessories created by Korean designers and curated by major
celebrities and experts such as renowned fashion stylists.
Up-and-coming local designers collaborate with these influential
figures to introduce their products on byBox’s platform. This enables
customers to obtain unique fashion items that are not available
anywhere else, at reasonable prices.
• Scheduled to release several new boxes curated by top Korean
celebrities of ‘Hallyu’ (the Korean Wave) in the first half of 2014
• Will expand into other lifestyle categories including living, food
and children’s goods
Vius Korea is the creator of Mr. Koon, the curation commerce
service that sells high-tech digital & design products from around the
world to early adopter tech-lovers faster and at lower prices than any
other online commerce site.
The Mr. Koon team includes two Co-Founders of TicketMonster, the
online ticketing platform, and the CFO of Reebonz, the online luxury
Mr. Koon scours the globe for colorful and distinctive IT, design and
household items with high-tech features in categories ranging from
IT, camping, leisure and household. Mr. Koon has established a
unique market position in Korea by targeting male early tech
adopters (+70% of customers are male).
Mr. Koon’s reasonable prices, made possible by cutting out the
middleman and streamlining the buying process, have led to
significant customer growth.
• Monthly revenue has reached nearly $1 million (average amount
of each customer order is about $150 USD)
• +60,000 registered users (250% increase since September 2013)
• Its new distribution system delivers orders within 7 days
Qurion creates Semantic Vertical Search Engine focused on
Summarization and Personalization of User-Generated Content
Problem Qurion tries to solve is as follows
• Existing search services for User-Generated Services and
Products Review Content still stuck at Search 1.0 technology that is
based on basic information retrieval technologies such as string
match and link analysis.
• User has to read too many reviews to get useful information.
• Wide variety of opinions expressed in the reviews makes it
confusing and hard to remember.
• Lacking next-generation search technology with semantics-based
relevancy models and analysis, clustering, summarization, and
CEO, Syung Lee has 20+ years work experience in Silicon Valley.
(joined Google at pre-IPO stage and held various positions including
technical account manager for ecommerce sites like TripAdvisor,
CTO, Woojoo Lee has vast experience regarding Semantics Search
at Naver (#1 Search Engine at Korea)
Senior Engineer, Sam Fung was Senior Web Solutions and
Applications Engineer at Google. Was at Google for 9+ years
Cldi is a startup that uses image recognition technology and
machine learning to make visual browsing more easier for
everyone. The company aims to improve beyond current
existing technologies and make information searching from
images more efficient.
Anthony S. Baek, the company's CEO, earned his PhD at KAIST
and has both hardware experience from designing multimedia
processors and software experience from Samsung Electronics,
Jungin Lee, the company's CTO, was involved in large-scaled
image recognition researches at KAIST, developed mobile
games such as Mini Game Paradise 5 and Homerun Battle 3D
at Com2uS, and participated in improving handwriting
recognition algorithms at ETRI.
Focusing on Image Recognition Technology
Cldi is a technology-based venture that concentrates in image
recognition technology. By using neural network models for
the recognition process, Cldi claims to have the highest
accuracy in recognizing images.
The heads of each department, including development, animation
and strategy, that created the hit online MMORPG ‘C9’ (which took
the Grand Prize at the 2009 Korea Game Awards) formed Fincon
together to make mobile RPGs.
• Choong Kil Yoo: Producer & Head of Strategy for C9
• Jung Hyun Kim: Head of Client Services for C9
• Jay Young Kim: Head of Servers for C9
• Sung Hwan Kim: Head of Characters for C9
• Ki Young Nam: Head of New Business at Webzen Games
• Fincon grew from 11 to 40 employees
• Tens of millions of dollars in revenue
Fincon’s first mobile RPG ‘Hello Hero’ was once ranked the #1 free
game in the iTunes App Store and #3 popular app in Google Play. It
also rose to the #5 game in the global Google Play ranking at one
• 280+ diverse collectible characters
• Available in about 150 countries including the U.S., U.K. and
• Once ranked as the #1 paid app in China
Availability: Global (150 countries)
iTunes Google Play
Neptune’s CEO Wook Jung built his team with several
recognized leaders in Korea’s gaming industry.
• Wook Jung, CEO: CEO of NHN Entertainment
• Sang Hoon Kwon, CTO: CTO of NHN Japan
• Han Sang Cho, COO: COO of NHN Entertainment
Neptune released its first game ‘Nexon Pro Baseball Master’
in 2013 and will release its second RPG in April 2014.
‘Nexon Pro Baseball Master’
Nexon Pro Baseball Master 2013 is a baseball simulation
game for smartphones.
• 2.5 million downloads since launch
Dryad stands out among game startups for its strong team.
• Young Seo, CEO: Producer at Daum Mobile Games
• Jungdae Lee, Producer: Producer at Daum Mobile Games
• Hongmo Kim, CTO: Engineer at NC Soft and Daum
• Dohyung Ban, Art Director: M.F.A. in Computer Art from
the School of Visual Art
Dryad was founded in May 2012 with the aim of
developing mobile RPGs to introduce a brand new genre of c
Dryad plans to develop a TCG that reflects Korean gamers’ pr
eferences and is focused on creating one that’s unique
from the TCGs popular in Japan.
Dryad’s debut TCG, called ‘Legions,’ will be published by
NHN Entertainment in April 2014.
O’ol Blue was started by CEO Nam Suk Kim and the key
developers who brought the award-winning MMORPG ‘C9’ to
Korean gamers in 2009.
O’ol Blue released ‘Mighty Quest,’ a game that combines the
fun of RPG and puzzles to a character collection game.
In December 2013, O’ol Blue released Mighty Quest, a fun m
obile RPG that features diverse characters and has a wide ap
peal to all types of gamers. More than 50,000 people
reserved a copy before its release.
What differentiates Mighty Quest from other character
collection games is that players don’t have to throw away
characters that they worked hard to raise simply because
their ability levels are low.
Any character in the game can be raised to achieve the
highest ability level possible.
Dubaki means ‘two wheels’ in Korean, which represents the
founders’ philosophy that ‘performance’ and ‘the ability to
work well with others’ are the two elements that are essential
to a great team.
Dubaki was founded by the team behind successes including
the mobile 3D MMORPG ‘Dragon Mist’ and the large-scale
mobile shooting game ‘Air Hunter,’ which won praise when
WeMade Entertainment showcased it at the E3 Expo and the
G-Star Global Game Exhibition.
Dubaki plans to release a casual shooting game in April 2014.
The Valcon team is made up of six game developers who
spent many years working together to develop MMORPG
titles at Nexon and XL Games.
• Woo Jun Jung, CEO: In charge of strategy & monetization
at ArcheAge and Nexon Live Game
• Hee Young Kim, Executive: Part Leader for Game Design
at XL Games
Valcon is set to release a new type of defense
game that combines social feedback and an online game
narrative in April 2014.
The Cherry Bugs team consists of six experienced developers
who worked together at WeMade Entertainment, one of
Korea’s top game companies, for many years and produced
Chul Ho Jung, CEO
• Section Chief of WeMade Entertainment’s graphics
department, which had 120 graphic designers
• His PC game ‘The Boss’ won the Grand Prize at the 2003
Korea Game Awards
Hyun Jin Jang, Producer
• Globally recognized animator
• Won 4th Place at Dominance War, the international
game art competition
Min Soo Kang, a developer with over 10 years of experience
in creating large-scale MMORPGs, and other top-rated
developers round out the Cherry Bugs team.
Red Sahara was founded by key members who formerly worked
together at Webzen Games, building a strong sense of
teamwork and creating successful large-scale games over the
course of 4 years.
Red Sahara launched a mobile strategy RPG game titled
‘Immortal Warrior’ in April 2014.
The game became instant success - Immortal Warrior was once
ranked the #8 top grossing game in the Kakao Game
Platform and the #6 top grossing app in the Google Play Store.
It is a remarkable feat considering that it released the game
without the help of a publisher and little in the way of marketing.
Korean gamers are giving Immortal Warrior high marks for
capturing the fun, immersive experience of a traditional RPG in a
mobile game. Players can collect and cultivate diverse 3-D
characters and employ differentiated fighting strategies with 4-
character groups. The growing popularity of Immortal Warrior
has also begun attracting attention from game publishers in the
neighboring Chinese market.
Howling Soft was founded by key members who formerly
worked together at Game High, building a strong sense
of teamwork and creating successful #1 FPS Game in
Korea called ‘Sudden Attack”. Howling Soft is currently
recognized as the best FPS Game startup.
Howling Soft is slated to launch a mobile FPS game
titled ‘Sand Storm’ in June 2014.
CoCoon Games was founded by key members who formerly
worked together at Paprika Lab, acquired by GREE
• JeongWook Lee, CEO: former Paprika Lab COO
• Kimun Song, CTO : Former Paprika Lab CTO,
Lead Programmer at Nexon
• SangYub Lee, CPO : Former Liveops Manager at Kabam.
Paprika Lab Graphic Designer
CoCoon Games is slated to launch a mobile strategy RPG
(tribal wars) game titled ‘Songs of War’ in June 2014.
Songs of War
K Cube Family
WE SHARE WHAT WE LEARN & GROW TOGETHER
Family CEO Day is a monthly networking event for K Cube
Ventures’ family companies.
• Executives share advice & discuss opportunities for
• Contributes to Korea’s startup ecosystem as a forum for
knowledge sharing & networking
K Cube family companies have access to an innovative
online & mobile platform where they can:
• Share their best practices and past experiences
• Make more efficient and effective executive decisions
through opinion sharing
HANDS-ON & PRACTICALASSISTANCE
K Cube Ventures provides our family with diverse
opportunities for business collaboration through our
wide network of industry experts including investors,
incubators, startups and media outlets. We also:
• Provide advice for expansion in Asia and overseas
• Assist with HR, PR and management issues such as
tax, legal and accounting matters
& Mgmt. Support
K Cube Ventures regularly holds conferences to
contribute to the Korean startup ecosystem. Other events
• Shina Chung, Partner, gives one-on-one mentoring
sessions to entrepreneurs on a monthly basis at
#1 co-working space for entrepreneurs, D.Camp
• We offer numerous lectures at universities such as
and Seoul National University as well as prominent
OUR VISION & FOUNDERS
K Cube Ventures is an early stage venture capital firm
founded in April 2012 with the vision of harnessing the
power of startups to change our world.
Brian Kim, the creator of Korea’s icon of innovation,
Kakao, founded K Cube Ventures together with Jimmy
Rim, known for his investments in internet, mobile and
gaming startups including SundayToz, the maker of
K Cube Ventures believes that early stage startups not
only need financial support, but also experienced
mentors. To this end, K Cube Ventures assists startups
in the areas of business development, networking, team
building, strategy consulting, investment & financial
affairs, HR & PR and management.
Thus far, K Cube has invested in 20 companies and will
continue to invest in early stage startups in categories
such as data analysis technology, social and commerce.
(Between $100 thousand to $1 million per startup on
In addition, K Cube is committed to sustaining the active
networking and knowledge sharing that exist among our
startups through our unique family culture and
contributing to the development of Korea’s startup
Current: Chairman, K Cube Ventures
Previous: CEO, NHN Corporation
B.S. and M.S. in Industrial Engineering from
Seoul National University
Current: CEO, K Cube Ventures
Previous: Principal, Softbank Ventures
Consultant, Boston Consulting Group
Strategy Manager, NHN Corporation
B.S. in Industrial Engineering from KAIST
Startup’s Best Friend – We Help Extraordinary Talents Take a Leap of Faith
• General Manager, Naver Business
• Manager of Strategy and Business
Development, eBay Inc.
• Consultant, Boston Consultant Group
Shina Chung, Partner
• Co-Founder & Executive, Idea Works
(mobile service startup)
• Associate, VirtualTek
• Manager, SK Communication
• Manager, CJ Corporation
Jun Kim, Partner
Daisy Lee, Admin Team Lead
• Assistant Manager, KTB Network
• Assistant Manager, Solomon Bank
• Admin Manager, UQI Partners
• Admin Manager, Medici Investment
• Main AE(Account Executive) for
numerous IT Companies at Top PR Firm
Jenny Lee, PR Team Lead
Clare Cho, Admin Team Manager
• Accounting, General Affairs manager at
Investment Advisory firm and Venture
K Cube Ventures invests in internet, mobile, game
and tech startups. We believe that we can provide
our best support to startups that are in our field of
1. Where do you invest?
The seed stage to the growth stage. We also
invest in startups that do not have products or
services yet and those in the process of
assembling their teams.
2. At which stage do you invest?
Between $100 thousand and $1 million per startup
3. How much do you invest?
K Cube believes that people are the most
important element of startup success. We look for
entrepreneurs with a strong sense of mission and
startups that act like ‘painkillers’ that solve life’s
4. What are your investment criteria?
We not only provide financial investment, but also
give startups access to K Cube’s network and
business insights. We give assistance for needs
such as recruitment, entry into global markets,
creating partnerships with large companies and
5. How do you support startups?
K Cube Ventures takes a minority stake in the
company without securities or guarantees. We
invest with the goal of a venture exit through an
IPO or M&A within 7-9 years.
6. What are your exit criteria?
K Cube Ventures aims to become a startup’s best
friend. We want to be the first people that a gifted
entrepreneur or team will call when they consider
doing a startup. We also want to help cultivate the
Korean startup ecosystem through our active early
stage investment and our ultimate goal is to assist
startups that will create innovation on a global
7. What are your operational goals?