SoftBank Urges South Korea To Invest In AI

South Korea is the home to some of the biggest companies in consumer electronics such as Samsung, LG and Hyundai. The son of the Chairman of SoftBank has urged  South Korean President Moon to focus on the national development of AI, in South Korea.

Seoul’s Tech Zone

Seoul’s Tech Zone

SoftBank is a Japanese Multinational Conglomerate holding company headquartered in Tokyo, Japan. SoftBank holds major stakes in various firms such as Boston Dynamics, Alibaba, Uber and Ola. SoftBank is very well known for its Vision Fund, the world’s largest technology-focused capital fund, with over $100 billion in capital. The Vision Fund is positively shaping the future by backing today's boldest, most transformative and optimistic ideas with large-scale, long-term investments. They believe that the AI revolution is here and their portfolio of companies are leading the revolution.

The government believes obtaining AI core technologies by joining hands with private corporations will not only achieve global standards but eventually nurture talented people and quality jobs. We aim to reach the global top four by 2022
— Chang Byung-Gyu

South Korea announced a national plan to invest $ 2 billion by 2022 to strengthen its AI capacity, by investing in six new AI research institutes. South Korea plans to develop 1370 AI talents by 2022, including 350 researchers; and award 4,500 AI Scholarships. The State also announced an intensive 6 month project to address the AI talent shortage. “Young entrepreneurs have passion and ideas, but they have no funds,” Son stated. President Moon also thanked Son for advising former presidents Kim Dae Jung and Roh Moo Hyun while they were in office, saying Son’s advice on the need for broadband internet infrastructure and an online gaming industry greatly helped the South Korean economy, the office said.

At their meeting in Seoul, Son said the country should direct all resources, such as education and budgets, to develop the sector. This meeting is surprising as  neither Moon nor Son commented on deteriorating ties between Japan and South Korea.

Indraneel Dulange