Kakao Ventures, a venture capital company specializing in funding in initial rounds, released an infographic that sums up its investment activities in 2018.
This year, Kakao Ventures carried out new and follow-up investments worth 33.7 billion won (US$29.8 million) in 43 startups. Investments in seed rounds and series A rounds took up the largest share. The company’s accumulated investments since 2012 amount to 135 billion won (US$119.4 million).
Kakao Ventures' portfolio includes more than 140 companies. By investment sector, mobile and services account for 50 percent, advanced technologies 27 percent and games 23 percent.
In particular, Kakao Ventures expanded its investment into new industries such as AR and blockchain this year. It has invested in LetinAR and Spatial in the AR field and Kodebox and Terra in the blockchain area. It has also invested into teams that are entering Indian markets such as Limese and My duty.
"This year is the year when Kakao Ventures continued to take on new and meaningful challenges to become a strong partner for startups," said CEO Chung Shin-ah.
This year, Kakao Ventures established ‘value-up partner teams’ starting with games and blockchain areas. Among them, Chung Wook, CEO of the mobile game developer Neptune Corp., which is a listed company and in Kakao Ventures’ portfolio, is currently working as a ‘game changer.’ Kakao Ventures has also actively carried out three or more series investments into portfolio companies such as Lunit and Jubilee Works.
There were also other changes. The company’s name was changed from K Cube Ventures to Kakao Ventures in March. In addition, the company appointed then managing director Chung Shin-ah as new CEO and then managing director Kim Ki-joon as vice president. They both had been sharing visions with Kakao Ventures for more than five to six years.
"Kakao Ventures will continue to work with startups to advance the future. We will do our best to help startups tap into their core competencies and grow into big winners in the long term," Chung said.
Meanwhile, Kakao Ventures, which was launched in April 2012, currently operates six investment associations whose combined assets total 204.6 billion won.