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SKorea fosters startups as it seeks economic shift

Youkyung Lee (via AP/ SMH) | May 31, 2013
South Korea's government wants to cultivate entrepreneurship after years of diminishing returns from the reliance on state-favored companies known more for their massive scale and aggressive competitive instincts than bold thinking and creativity.

"Because I have a control over the entire project, I can try anything I want," said Ki, who has moved from a typically drab Samsung office to an open plan space in Seoul's ritzy Gangnam district that is decked out with bare concrete walls, high ceilings and colorful chairs and couches.

In her usual job, she could not see the outcomes of her work for customers, but this summer she is visiting the Congo to test a prototype movie projector made with used handset screens. The goal is to figure out how to make a portable movie projector using materials readily available in the country, she said.

But it is baby steps for Samsung and there's no suggestion of changing its overall culture.

Creative Labs "will stay outside the system," said spokesman Kim Deuggeun.


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