Nearly 195 countries were signing the Paris Agreement. The US Supreme Court was affirming same-sex marriage. “Uptown Funk” was topping the charts. Jurassic World was still in theaters. And here at betahaus, we were hosting our first-ever BETAPITCH event in Asia.
Of the Korean startups who competed, five ended up in Berlin for a three-month accelerator program. We didn’t know it yet, but it would be the beginning of a long collaboration between the startup ecosystems of Berlin and Seoul.
We have since hosted five landing pad programs for Korean startups, four startup challenges to get European startups into Korea, and two accelerator events. And just last week, we hosted one of our most significant collaborations between the two countries yet: an Ecosystem Tour for a Korean delegation.
The delegation included Minister of Justice Beom-kye Park and was put on by the Korean Embassy and the German Trade and Commerce Union (DIHK), together with Enpact and Asia Berlin.
If you’ve ever wondered what it looks like to do business in Berlin, an ecosystem tour is the ultimate way to start. So here’s a look behind the scenes.
Berlin has rapidly become the most innovative ecosystem in Europe. Yet navigating the German market isn’t without its challenges for new arrivals. That’s where Ecosystem Tours come in.
betahausX launched Ecosystem Tours in 2015 to give visiting startups, governments, and corporates a sense of what it’s really like to do business in Berlin.
Custom programs with hands-on sessions, talks, panel discussions, keynotes, and networking with some of Berlin’s top VCs, accelerator partners, and startups unlock access to all the Berlin ecosystem has to offer, fast.
At the core, the tours are multi-disciplinary. Hands-on. Our expert team calls upon their global network of 43 multipliers, 200+ mentors and coaches, and 1,500+ startups (even including Berlin unicorns like Meta and Gorillas) to create super-tailored programs and initiate meaningful networks in just a few days.
The day kicked off with a coworking tour. Our co-founder – Max von der Ahé – shared the betahaus story and gave insight into how the startup scene has evolved since 2009. The delegation went on an interactive walkthrough of the space, meeting with members to better understand what it means to be working in the Berlin tech scene.
As the event aimed to highlight the experience of Korean startups expanding into Berlin (and vis versa) the next part of the tour was a presentation from two startups. Industrial Analytics – a German startup that went to Korea – and notaAI – a Korean company that expanded to Germany.
This also included an intro into landing pad programs, with presentations about our KISED and KIC Europe collaborations – landing pads that have been welcoming Korean startups into Berlin for the past six years – and an overview of Asia Berlin – a landing pad program organized by Enpact.
The event finished up in the Loft with a roundtable discussion with two more startups – Easy Cook Asia and Avocado Communications – Rainer Seider from the Berlin senate, and Jan from Enpact.
Over the last seven years, our collaboration with Korea has proven to be a significant one. With strong government support, world-class infrastructure, and some of the biggest market potential in Asia, there’s no denying that the Korean startup scene is hot and rising fast.
Through customised landing pads or market entry programs, we've offered dozens of startups a chance to meet key players, build partnership and scale up in Berlin.