With the government’s measures to create a virtuous circle out of the start-up and venture ecosystem in full swing this year, there is growing anticipation that this year will be the first year of the second venture era. The anticipation is due to the fact that most of the venture industry’s long-cherished desires were already fulfilled.
“Now it is time for the market to swing into high gear,” stated representatives of venture firms, large companies, and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), together with officials at relevant government agencies at a January 9 seminar. The event was hosted by the Korea Venture Business Association and the Korean Venture Capital Association to revitalize a Venture-Startup Funding Ecosystem.
“It is true that it took a long time to implement most of the government policies aimed at fostering the venture ecosystem and to raise policy-oriented funds,” said Choo Kyung-ho, Vice Minister of Strategy and Finance, in his congratulatory speech. He added, “I think that various forms of capital will be able to be injected into the market this year, in light of the completion of a tax-code revision and finished preparations for managing all kinds of funds.”
In fact, many restrictions on the venture industry’s activities to invigorate the start-up and venture ecosystem were eliminated with the tax-code revision implemented at the end of last year. For example, tax deductions for angel investors were expanded from 30% to 50%. 10% tax credits for technology innovation-type mergers and acquisitions also began to be provided. Furthermore, a growing number of SMEs were exempt from joint and several guarantees for start-up funds.
Policy-oriented funds such as the Growth Ladder Fund and the Future Creation Fund are going to be available from this year.
Industry associates who attended the event said that the next task is to revitalize the exit channel through M&A deals without discriminating against large firms, SMEs, or venture firms.