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  • Writer's pictureThe Citypreneurs Team

2018 Citypreneurs Information Session: Find Out What Went Down

Last Friday, the #Citypreneurs Information Session at D.Camp brought together start-ups and entrepreneurs looking to learn more about the #UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the opportunities our competition offers. Around 100 people were in attendance for this event, which included a networking session with hosts UNESCAP, WFUNA, SDF, WeGO, and last year’s winners Dobrain and EIDware.

As a follow up to the successful first Urban Innovation Challenge: Citypreneurs Young SDGs Startup Competition, which attracted over 140 applications from 46 countries worldwide in 2017, this year’s competition will focus on the themes of #GreenEnergy, #UrbanMobility and #SocialProtection.

UN Sustainable Development Consultant Charlotte Arribe speaking at the 2018 Citypreneurs Information Session.

The event kicked off with an introduction to the 2018 Citypreneurs program and the SDGs by UNESCAP Sustainable Development Consultant Charlotte Arribe, who encouraged the audience to engage with the shared global vision of the UN 2030 Agenda with the goal of eradicating poverty and achieving sustainable development worldwide by 2030.

She emphasized that “the SDGs highlight many untapped markets and business opportunities that not only have economic opportunities, but also social ones. To ensure prosperity is shared and no one is left behind, an integrated approach [in your startup’s social impact] is crucial for progress across the multiple goals of the 2030 Agenda.”

In the following talk on Doing Business for Good, WFUNA Senior Partnerships and Innovation Officer Joseph Lim gave numerous tips on how #startups can best approach the SDGs. Highlights included:

1. The SDGs market is huge ($12 trillion).

2. Customer tastes are changing, with 66% to 75% of younger buyers preferring to buy #sustainable brands despite higher prices.

3. Global talent is moving into this field: 3/4 of millennials would rather take a paycut to work in a socially responsible company.

The overwhelming takeaway was that startups with social and environmental missions that align perfectly with their business model have higher chances of making long-term profit.

Next, Seoul Digital Foundation Senior Manager Hyomin Choi gave an overview of the Pitch Rules and Evaluation Criteria, focusing specifically on how the themes should be approached for participants from the Seed track and Growth track. While Growth Track participants should focus on aligning their experienced startups to the SDGs relating to their theme, #urban challenges under the 3 themes have been specially issued from governmental organizations to guide Seed Track participants in addressing the most pressing urban issues of #Seoul.

The evaluation rubrics for the competition will be based on (1) compatibility with the SDGs and Seoul’s urban and social issues, (2) plausibility of teams gaining traction for their business, and (3) profitability based on the originality and market size.

For the evaluation of the Seed track, the compatibility of participant ideas to the problems of Seoul city and UN's SDGs will be weighted more than the other two criteria, to make up for the lack of traction or sales. For the evaluation of the Growth Track, more weight will be placed on plausibility and profitability to assess participant plans for the future as well as what how they will be using their investment funds. As for the final pitches, more weight will be placed on how scalable teams are.

The session ended with networking time following the presentations from Dobrain CEO Yejin Choi and EIDware CEO Daejin Shin about their experiences with Citypreneurs (who will both be featured in our upcoming blogs!).

Networking with last year's winners and the competition hosts at the 2018 Citypreneurs Information Session.

Special thanks to D.Camp for providing their wonderful venue, to the Citypreneurs team and facilitators for making it happen, and most importantly, to all of you for attending and showing your support!

For those interested in the Seed Track, we will be holding a Seoul Challenge Workshop on Monday June 25th at D.Camp @6pm, during which you will have the opportunity to learn more about the urban challenges issued by our Seoul Governmental Organizations, as well as take part in workshops to pitch your ideas and get instant feedback from the presenters. RSVP HERE TO ATTEND!

We look forward to seeing you there!

Applications to the competition open on June 1 and last until August 29. Your business model should ideally take into consideration the interlinked nature of the UN SDGs. For more information, check out our website.

CONNECT WITH US via Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Instagram, Youtube, we’re glad to assist you with any questions or enquiries you may have! We look forward to your application!

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