Yolk a Korean company that makes thin yet powerful solar chargers made big news for having the most successful Kickstarter campaign by a Korean Company.  It is a very great invention.  With the solar chargers panels, you can charge your phone without the use of an electrical source…all you need is the sun.  It will fully charge your phone amount the same as it would take using a wall outlet (2.5 hours for Iphone6).  They run around $120 and is very light and easy to carry.  They have raised over a million dollars on Kickstarter.  That is the exception rather than the rule.  Most Korean Startups have a hard time getting crowd funding globally.  Here is the #1 Reason

 Korean are not very fluent in English.  

South Korea TOEFL Scores
Source ETS

Amongst 163 countries that took the TOEFL test, India ranked 19th, followed by the Philippines at 35th. South Korea ranked 80th and North Korea ranked 96th. Next was China at 105th, Thailand at 116th and Japan at 135th.  The average total score is 80 which is around what South Korea got.  So when you think of the economic advancement Korea has made over the years.  It is shocking to see South Korea be ranked “average” when it comes to English.  How are these Korean Startups going to get crowdfunding when they are too scared to join an American site like Kickstarter.  Koreans are also very shy when it comes to English and while they understand the structure they don’t practice English in daily speech which will make it harder to sell their idea to global investors.

This is why many well off families in Korea have started to send their children abroad to the United States, England, and Australia.  However it will take years before these children will become young entrepreneurs.

Korea is filled with English Hagwons (private academies). You can’t walk a block without seeing at least one.  Why so many?  For one thing they are a great way to make money and most Hagwons sadly focus more on the profit than actually teaching English.  Secondly the public school system does such a poor job at teaching English that Korea needs these Hagwons to supplement their education.

However most English Hagwons are not up to par.  They focus more on listening and reading rather than speaking and writing.  Which in turn will result in the students ending up shy in regards to actually speaking English.  Speaking and writing expand’s a child creativity.  Reading and listening to others just makes them robots.  Many parents in Korea can read and understand some English, more than you would expect but when it comes for them to explain or write something…they can’t do it.

Once Korean’s start to learn proper English they will start to produce young innovative Entrepreneurs that can think globally.

 

1 Comment

  1. […] Korea’s National Assembly has passed a stimulus bill that allows crowdfunding in Korea.  Crowdfunding was illegal until this year so we need to ask ourselves.  Is this good for Korea?  Now Korean […]

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