Samsung Electronics Co. on Monday opened its second regional C-Lab Outside center in Gwangju about a month after opening the first regional startup incubation campus in Daegu as part of its efforts to reinvigorate the regional economy with a resilient startup and job creation ecosystem.
The new regional C-Lab Outside center will house five local startups in the artificial intelligence, healthcare and materials sectors. The startups were selected through a competition in November last year.
Clika, an auto tiny machine learning (ML) platform developer; Ghostpass, an AI-based biometric authentication software developer; and Foel, a radiative cooling material developer are among the final five winners.
They were each awarded 100 million won ($76,219.51), and have been given a dedicated office in the Gwangju center as well as business consulting services.
This is Samsung Electronics’ second regional startup incubation center after C-Lab Outside Daegu Campus, which opened in February.
The Korean tech giant plans to open the third regional C-Lab Outside center in North Gyeongsang Province in April to expand the country’s startup ecosystem, which is one of the company’s social commitments repeatedly emphasized by Samsung Electronics Chairman Jay Y. Lee.
The company recently unveiled a plan to invest 60 trillion won for 10 years to build a nationwide ecosystem to revitalize regional businesses and assist in their global advance.
C-Lab Outside is a spin-off program of Samsung Electronics’ C-Lab Inside launched in 2012 as its in-house startup incubation program. The startup lab for non-Samsung entrepreneurs was set up in 2018.
C-Lab Outside is expected to invigorate the regional economy by giving local startups access to necessary resources without moving to the capital Seoul or the surrounding metropolitan area, according to the company.
Gwangju is a strategically important city to Samsung Electronics.
Its Gwangju operation hires 3,400 employees and generates 5 trillion won in annual sales. It plays a key role in the regional economy, with the number of its contractors in the city estimated at about 200.
The company also has been running a few corporate social responsibility (CSR) programs in Gwangju, including the Samsung Software Academy For Youth (SSAFY).
Write to Jeong-Soo Hwang at firstname.lastname@example.org
Sookyung Seo edited this article.