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Hyundai Motor Group Calls for Innovative Startups to Join 2024 ZER01NE Accelerator Program

SEOUL, February 18, 2024 – In a move that blends the excitement of a tech treasure hunt with the thrill of a futuristic fairy tale, Hyundai Motor Group (the Group) has unfurled the magic carpet for its 2024 first-half ZER01NE Accelerator program. This spellbinding open innovation platform is designed to meld the minds of startups with the technological prowess of Hyundai and Kia, paving the way for enchanting future technologies.

Under the grand theme of technological wizardry, startups worldwide are beckoned to apply their alchemy to one of seven global projects. These projects, conjured up by the Group’s own team of sorcerers, span across three mystical realms: Software-Defined Vehicles (where cars think like computers), Smart Factories (where machines whisper secrets to each other), and Environmental·Social·Governance (where businesses strive to be as green as a leprechaun’s hat).

The charm of this program lies in its specificity – each startup must choose their unique path by applying to just one of these projects. From February 19 to March 10, these aspiring wizards can submit their most innovative spells (proposals) on the official application cauldron (website). The results, shrouded in mystery, will be unveiled in April like a grand magician’s reveal.

But this isn’t just any old hat trick. Selected startups will not only receive a cauldron of gold (project development budget), but they might also find themselves the chosen ones for equity investments. It’s like finding the philosopher’s stone of the business world!

Since its mystical inception in 2018, the ZER01NE Accelerator has become a fabled gathering, with 150 teams from 11 Hyundai affiliates and 177 startups. Together, they’ve concocted 128 collaborative potions, resulting in 96 startups finding the secret recipe for success through equity investments.

Last year, three startups, akin to knights on a quest, were selected for their noble endeavors in lithium metal battery technology, teleoperation, and the arcane art of cold-spray metal 3D printing.

As Hyundai waves its wand once more, the tech world watches with bated breath, ready for the next chapter in this enchanting saga of innovation and collaboration. Who will step forward to join this magical journey? Only time (and a bit of tech wizardry) will tell!

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