September 20, 2020

STIC Investments, Amorepacific and more - this week’s startup and investment update

PUBLISHED : August 07, 2020 - 15:40

UPDATED : August 07, 2020 - 16:20

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STIC grabs Juvis

STIC Investments is set to acquire Juvis Diet, a Korean weight-loss consulting chain, industry sources said on August 7.

The Seoul-based private equity firm, which was selected as the preferred bidder for the deal, has reportedly offered 250 billion won ($211 million) for 100 percent of the chain. The 250 billion won, which compares to runner-up Pacific Alliance Group’s 200 billion won, means STIC values the weight-loss firm at EV/EBITDA multiples of 12.5 times, a ratio used to determine the value of a company.

Juvis Diet’s revenue and operating profit stood at 47.9 billion won and 14.2 billion won, respectively, last year.

STIC also made headlines earlier this week with its $200 billion investment in Singapore-based ride-hailing app Grab. 

Gangnam Unni acquires Japanese competitor Lucmo

Healing Paper, operator of Gangnam Unni, said on Wednesday that it had acquired Japanese competitor Lucmo. Founded in September 2017, Japan’s No. 2 cosmetic surgery platform has 150,000 users and 100,0000 beauty clinic reviews.

In November 2019, the 5-year-old Korean startup unveiled a Japanese version in an effort to meet growing demand from overseas customers. Gangnam Unni, meaning “a sister in Gangnam” in Korean, connects 1,800 hospitals and 2.3 million users, according to the company.

The latest acquisition came after Healing Paper wrapped up series B funding worth 18.5 billion won in April, with the participation of lead investor Legend Capital, as well as KB Investment and Premier Partners. 

Amorepacific X Musinsa to make synergy

Beauty giant Amorepacific and fashion startup Musinsa are partnering on a 100 billion-won joint fund.

They will invest in promising early-stage startups with a focus on beauty, fashion, multichannel networking and consumer service.

Lee Yong-jin, an official in Amorepacific’s new growth initiative division, said that the company, which funded 49 percent of the fund, hopes to respond to fast-changing digital trends with millennials and Generation Z -- which combined comprise consumers now 40 years old and younger. 

AI tech firm Skelter Labs secures W17.7b

Skelter Labs, an artificial intelligence technology company based in Korea, has raised 17.7 billion won from KDB Bank, Korea Investment and Securities and Kakao Ventures. Including the latest round of funding, Skelter Labs, which was founded in 2015 by the former head of tech at Google Korea, has now raised 27.7 billion won in known funding.

By Park Ga-young (

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