On Feb. 27, 2019, the Korean-German Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KGCCI) held the kick-off event for its fifth ‘Innovation Awards’, to announce the beginning of their search for this year’s most innovative companies.
The ‘KGCCI Innovation Awards’, which marks its fifth year, was initiated in 2015 with the purpose of fostering innovative ideas and strategies of companies which are performing its business in Korea, as well as promoting trade and business cooperation between Germany and Korea.
The event was held at WeWork Seollung II, Gangnam-gu, Seoul, with an opening speech by Ms. Barbara Zollmann, President & CEO of KGCCI, who expressed her high expectations for this year’s awards. During the main part of the event the four winner companies of the previous year presented their outstanding business ideas to the audience.
Emphasizing the importance of innovation, Ms. Barbara Zollmann, President & CEO of KGCCI, said, "Past successes are important but innovations create the future of companies and even countries. It is not always about disruptive innovations. Small but crucial innovations can decide about entering new markets or transitioning of an old business model to a new one, bringing value to the company and society."
In the course of the event, Ms. Ingrid Drechsel, Chairman of KGCCI and President of Bayer Korea, who is also heading the jury of the KGCCI Innovation Awards explained the criteria and novelties of the fifth awards. She said, “For the sixth consecutive year South Korea is on top of the Bloomberg Innovation Index followed by Germany on second rank in 2019. This is a perfect fit to launch the 5th KGCCI Innovation Award in Korea. We hope to find innovative ideas and companies and to support them in realizing and accelerating their business in Korea as well as in a global market.”
The winners of ‘KGCCI Innovation Awards’ are selected and evaluated by a high-ranking German-Korean jury from business, academia and research. The ideas and strategies are evaluated under four criteria such as degree of innovation, proven success in the market, positive effect to the company and benefits for the society.
At the ‘2018 KGCCI Innovation Awards’, four companies were awarded: Domestic bedding brand ‘Allerman’ was awarded for ‘Innovation in Business’, global technology and service provider ‘Robert Bosch Korea’ was awarded for ‘Innovation in Digitalization’, domestic lighting start-up ‘Lumir’ was awarded for ‘Innovation in Sustainability’ and connected car solution company ‘OWiN’ was awarded with the ‘Chairman Award’.
The application for this year’s awards is open from March until May 2019, and after the evaluation period from June to August, KGCCI will hold an award ceremony on September 27th. The winners will be awarded at a festive awards ceremony with guests from business and politics. The main benefit of the KGCCI Innovation Awards are the vast opportunities of business extension through media exposure and the strong business network of the KGCCI which can boost the domestic and global business endeavors.
About Korean-German Chamber of Commerce and Industry:
The Korean-German Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KGCCI) has been promoting the economic relations between the Federal Republic of Germany and the Republic of Korea since its foundation in 1981. With the steady rise in bilateral trade to over 27.3 bil. USD and German investments of more than 10 bil. USD in Korea, the activities of KGCCI and the demand for its professional services have increased accordingly. This is reflected by the growing membership of around 500 members and a full-time staff of 22 bilingual professionals.