SINGAPORE (October 30, 2023) – Companies working with the Korea Tourism Startup Centre (KTSC) can expect a boost to expand their footprints across Southeast Asia with the signing of a new Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between KTSC and Singapore-based hospitality and travel-focused venture capital firm Velocity Ventures.
The MoU was signed by KTO Singapore director Kim Young Hee and Velocity Ventures founder and CEO Patrick Imbardelli, which will reinforce the commitment by both organisations to support innovative growth in the travel and hospitality industry in the region.
Velocity Ventures has also announced its first Korean tourism startup investment recipient – Tripbtoz, a Web3 based online travel agency that brings together community and commerce features with short-forms created by users, and serves a market that is moving towards video content.
Kim Young Hee, director of Korea Tourism Organisation Singapore said: “Singapore’s strategic significance as a regional launchpad for Korean tourism startup cannot be overstated. The leadership team at Velocity Ventures, with their wealth of expertise and unwavering support, are an invaluable guiding force for emerging Korean tourism startups collaborating with the Korea Tourism Startup Center (KTSC) in Singapore as they expand their footprint across Southeast Asia.”
“With a major mobile app redesign scheduled for later this year, we plan to fully localise our sales and marketing through the establishment of an entity to oversee the Southeast Asia market,” said Jiha Jung, CEO and founder of Tripbtoz. “We have direct contracts with 3,000 hotels in South Korea and Japan and our next stage of growth is to expand our reach and help hotels in Southeast Asia engage with our user communities. We are confident that social content travel storytelling will be how Generation 2030 travellers ‘play, share, stay’”.
Meanwhile, Nicholas Cocks, managing partner at Velocity Ventures said: “Investing in the flourishing tech startup ecosystem in Southeast Asia’s travel industry isn’t just about nurturing innovation; it’s about propelling the future of travel. By supporting these dynamic Korean tourism startups spearheading technological advancements here in Southeast Asia, we hope that they can help solve the biggest pain points in the industry. Embracing change isn’t just a choice; it’s the path to shaping the future of travel.”
More than 90 Korean startups have participated in KTO’s Tourism Startup Global Challenge Programme since its inception in 2020. This is an initiative that is designed to empower tourism-related startups to venture into overseas markets and receive grants and industry support, helping them unlock access to new business partners.