South Yorkshire business leaders have teamed up with South Korean entrepreneurs to deliver a mentoring programme with the aim of fast-tracking ideas into high-growth businesses.
Over the course of three months, five start-up teams from the Far East completed the Y-Accelerator scheme, delivered in partnership by Rotherham Investment and Development Office, the University of Sheffield and South Korean trade organisation TRoom. There was also support from Sheffield Hallam University, public and private sector mentors.
The programme culminated in an investor pitch day, hosted at AESSEAL’s head office in Rotherham. The teams delivered a seven minute pitch and were questioned by a panel of judges and the audience which included a variety of potential investors and partners.
Following an audience vote, Ultimate Drone was announced as the winner and received £30, 000 investment. The firm is developing a high-powered multi-rotor commercial drone that is said to have superior payload capacity, stability and endurance.
Changkeun Moon, chief executive officer of Ultimate Drone, said: “Before participating in the Y-Accelerator programme we developed great technology but we didn’t have a business. Now we have a strong business model and the confidence to realise our ambition of achieving a 10 per cent share of the worldwide drone market.”
The programme follows a recent agreement between the University of Sheffield, the Korea Institute of Carbon Convergence Technology, Jeonju University and Jeonju City. This will see a branch of Rotherham’s Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre being set up in South Korea.