A special “Demo Day” was held on December 21 at CJ HumanVille. Demo Day is an event held to showcase the business models and products developed by start-ups and venture firms to investors and relevant business representatives. Why was this event that is familiar to startup entrepreneurs held at CJ HumanVille?
The stars of this event were the team members of the first group of “Play-Lab,” an in-house venture development program being showcased for the first time this year by CJ OliveNetworks IT Business Division. The program seeks to discover competent employees with brilliant ideas and provide a driving force for their growth with new business. It is also designed to spread a creative corporate culture that enjoys “taking up challenges” throughout the company.
After proposing creative ideas during the in-house contest and the presentations, the two teams were selected for Play-Lab and have relentlessly worked hard until the end of the year to materialize and commercialize their ideas.
Throughout this process, CJ OliveNetworks fully supported the two teams with business funds, independent office space and side facilities, the mentoring of experts for the commercialization of their ideas, as well as the firm network and infrastructure of CJ Group’s affiliates.
△ Team members of the first group of “Play-Lab”
As such, one of the ideas materialized by the Play-Lab members with the company’s full support was “Biskit,” a service that provides customized beauty contents and beauty video alarms that enable customers to purchase desired items. The other was “SKY Cherry,” an information-sharing platform that has applied blockchain technology to commerce. On the Demonstration Day, the two teams came to *pitch their detailed business models based on their ideas, visions, and management plans.
*Pitch: A business starter or an artist, among others, personally introduce their ideas or project to producers, investors, and buyers at the planning stage.
Should the final ideas presented on this day be evaluated as having great potential for commercialization, the teams would have the opportunity to commercialize their ideas in-house or to separate from CJ OliveNetworks and form their own company. The event was thus the last hurdle that the Play-Lab teams had to overcome for their efforts to finally bear fruits.
About 80 representatives from investment agencies, startup consultant groups, and CJ Group’s affiliates, as well as external evaluators and CJ OliveNetworks IT Business Division staff filled the site to watch the presentations.
△ The Demonstration Day kicked off with a big applause from the visitors and observers
who witnessed the presentations of Play-Lab team members
The pitching of ideas started after a brief examination of the activities and the selection process of Play-Lab’s first group. First, the leader of the team PostFive, Kang Yun-sik, made a presentation on their business idea of “Biskit,” a service that provides beauty video alarms.
△ Kang pitching his team’s idea of “Biskit,” a beauty video alarm service
“Biskit” is a video alarm service that offers a new concept of providing customized beauty contents desired by viewers and upgrading the quality of contents through a pure content creation environment without advertisements.
Once a beauty influencer uploads videos that introduce daily beauty tips on the “Biskit” app, the users can then select the videos that they want to follow. “Biskit” rings alarms in hours for the users to easily follow the beauty habits of the influencer.
In addition, the videos include a feature of purchasing the products introduced by the influencers.
Then the influencers can then freely and honestly leave comments about the beauty products, while brands get to secure a unique channel to publicize their products. Also users can easily follow some excellent beauty habits and enjoy a new communication space. It is thus possible to kill three birds with one stone.
The event continued with a presentation by Kim Hee-sung of the SKY Cherry team on their blockchain-based information-sharing platform.
△ Kim introducing “SKY Cherry,” a blockchain-based lifestyle information-sharing platform
SKY Cherry means a community-type platform wherein users get to share lifestyle trends and knowledge such as style (fashion and beauty), place (hot restaurants and places), finance (finance and investment techniques), and culture (videos, broadcasts, and books).
The team declared that they introduced the blockchain technology to verify the reliability and objectivity, as well as enhance the transparency, of information shared among the users of the platform. Once a transaction is made, the principle of blockchain technology is applied to disclose the details to all participants, developing the platform into a channel wherein only valuable information is shared without advertisement-oriented contents. In addition, “Cherry” is given as its own cryptocurrency according to the degree of contribution made by each user within the community. As such, they prepared a differentiated compensation system.
After the passion-filled presentations of the two teams, the evaluation groups composed of CEO Lee Kyung-bae and other executives of CJ OliveNetworks IT Business Division, startup mentors, professional business consultants, and investment evaluators finally evaluated the potential of the ideas for commercialization.
The evaluation group evaluated the ideas based on their marketability, differentiation, and profitability. They reviewed in detail whether the teams presented the market scale and growth potential of their business in Korea and in the global market, whether the business models guarantee profitability, and whether the future execution plans and visions are clear.
△ CEO Lee Kyung-bae (top) of CJ OliveNetworks discussing the idea pitching of Play-Lab with the evaluation group;
Chung Jae-won (bottom) of Distribution/Logistics DT delivering the evaluation result
Play-Lab members thus came to complete their task with their idea pitching. Although their journey for commercialization ended here, it was sufficiently a meaningful time for them to take up the challenge of creating an in-house venture for the first time by CJ Group’s affiliates.
CJ OliveNetworks IT Business Division plans to continue the journey of creating an innovative corporate culture and support competent staff with excellent business start-up ideas by selecting and managing the second group of Play-Lab in February 2019.
The second group will have three teams so that more members can take up the challenge. In addition, the verification stage will be introduced in which the members examine the market response and quickly reflect the response to improve the next products, for effective commercialization of brilliant creative ideas.
Once again, let us give a big applause and cheer for the team members of Play-Lab’s first group who have ceaselessly worked hard for 10 months—from winning the idea contest and showcasing their ideas on the Demo Day to becoming the first “in-house venture” of CJ OliveNetworks IT Business Division.
We are asking for your high interest in and unfailing support to the second group of Play-Lab that will start anew this year with new ideas. (End)
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