A weekly newsletter uncovering innovation in China and South Korea
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Last month, I mentioned my favorite food delivery powerhouse, Woowa Brothers, had launched a live-streaming service. Their innovation- making it possible to click on and buy products showing in entertainment shows- has been a big success.

Is live video shopping within entertainment shows about to become the next big thing? I wouldn’t bet against it. I’ve been looking into it this week and I think I've stumbled on the next phase of nr2's search journey. I'd like to sense-check it with you.


Two restaurants in South Korea showcasing their products, and offering discounts to live viewers.

Let’s first remind ourselves how live-streaming began

In 2016, Mogujie, a Chinese fashion e-commerce start-up, started offering discounts to viewers who bought during live video-streaming. E-commerce giants like Alibaba and JD quickly followed suit. By 2018, live-streaming had extended to content platforms; Kuaishou, TikTok, Instagram and many other had all added live-streaming. Beyond the big players, in China and South Korea alone, more than 200 related start-ups had launched (needless to say, not all of them succeeded).


209 companies found through the nr2 search engine

All this week, I’ve been trying to search for product sold through live-streaming products. Amazingly, despite all the live-streaming start-ups shown above, I couldn’t find one which enabled me to search back through products I saw while viewing live. Equally, if a product range shown through live-streaming wasn’t trending in the news, I couldn’t even find general information about it through our news aggregator tool.

This raised the question: how do I search for these products, which are often the most innovative out there, if I can’t search through conventional means (traditional search engines)?

I was struggling with this question as I was looking for a flower delivery subscription service in South Korea. I couldn’t find anything on Google or Naver, and in the end, I tried the nr2 search engine for start-ups. Filtering for South Korea, I came across Kukka- a great Korean start-up doing exactly what I was searching for!

By looking for start-ups, rather than products, I was able to find the product I was looking for. Start-ups are usually the ones at the cutting-edge of innovation so maybe it wasn’t surprising, but it hadn't occurred to me before.


Unfiltered results for flowers on nr2 search engine with the profile of the most highly ranked start-up.

So, would you be interested in the search engine helping you to (please click one option and submit your answer to share your view):

Thanks as ever for reading and, if you like what you see, please consider sharing!



1 Selected Fundraising Activities

Raised 200Mn USD for its F & Pre IPO round.

Raised 25Mn USD for its B+ round from Tencent Investment and SEQUOIA CHINA.

Raised 400Mn CNY for its B+ round from Loyal Valley Capital.

Raised 25Bn KRW for its B round.

Raised 5Bn KRW for its A round.

Raised 16Bn KRW for its C round.

2 Selected IPO & M&A Events

Raised 688Mn CNY for its IPO round.

Raised 8Bn HKD for its IPO round.

Raised 2Bn CNY for its IPO round.

Raised 10Bn USD for its Secondary Offering round.

Raised an estimated 57Bn KRW for its IPO round.