“Kakao 1.0 was a time when it entered a large stream of times, called mobile, faster than anyone by launching KakaoTalk. Kakao 2.0 was a time to go beyond the messenger and constantly expand into various areas. And, Kakao 3.0 will be a time to expand growth opportunities through synergies and aggressively challenge global businesses.” – said CEO Sean Joh.
|▲ More than 200 reporters from inside and outside of the country visited the site to see the declaration of 'Kakao 3.0'.|
One of the core implementation strategies of Kakao 3.0 is to strengthen synergies through service convergence. The central platform for service convergence is KakaoTalk. KakaoTalk has been changing its communication and lifestyle in Korea since its launch in March 2010. As it replaced text messaging, changed a daily communication, and established new connections and relationships in a variety of areas such as games, commerce, payment, remittance, and content with the release, it has become an indispensable platform for our lives. In recent years, it is also focusing on the possibility of expanding 'open chat' which can chat based on the same interests among people who do not know each other and 'Kakao Melon' that can share music during conversation.
KakaoTalk also evolves into a space for recording the lives of individual users. Specifically, Kakao plans to start a ‘drawer’ project to manage personal digital assets such as photos, videos, schedules, and materials shared through KakaoTalk conversations. The project is aiming to launch in 2018, and it will be able to search for the digital assets through voice by artificial intelligence technology.
Through the expansion of synergy, AI speaker 'Kakao Mini' becomes more abundant. The Kakao Mini, which was officially launched in November 2017, is changing the behavior of users’ listening to music by combining with Melon. It also enhances user convenience by adding key services such as KakaoTalk message, Kakao Taxi call, food order, and traffic guide. It will also be able to control KakaoTalk VoiceTalk(dialing), translation, and home IoT in sequence.
Along with this, Kakao will continue to develop the technologies that make up Kakao’s AI platform 'Kakao I' and share the technology to enable its external partners to utilize the technology of Kakao, so that users can meet Kakao’s AI technology in every place. In order to achieve this, ‘Kakao I Open Builder’, which is a development platform for Kakao I, will be officially launched in 2H18, and the results of collaborations with Hyundai Kia Motors, GS E&C, and POSCO E&C will be also released in sequence.
|▲ Sean Joh and Mason Yeo, co-CEO for Kakao, answered the questions.|
Kakao will expand to the global market through investment in intellectual properties (IP) such as music, webtoons, web novels, games and videos, and development of a blockchain platform.
Learned that good IP grows together with market and platform through Kakao Friends, Kakao Page, Melon, etc., Kakao builds investment and cooperation system to grow with creators and maximize the value of IP. Through this, it has a strategy to provide a multi-entertainment experience by producing one excellent IP into various forms of contents.
Kakao is expanding its influence in the Japanese market, which is the main base of its global business, and making its way into China and Southeast Asia. In addition, Kakao plans to utilize the funds raised through foreign investment attraction in January for M&A of global content platform company to solidify the mid- to long-term growth base.
Kakao also revealed the direction of the blockchain business, which is the core technology of the future. Kakao plans to develop its own blockchain platform in 2018 to contribute to the creation of a healthy blockchain ecosystem, and secure a global growth power. To this end, it has recently established a blockchain subsidiary, ‘Ground X’, in Japan and appointed Dr. Jae-sun Han, former CTO of Future Play, as a CEO.
‘Ground X’ plans to take leadership in the blockchain technology by developing an Asian representative platform, not a platform only for Kakao, for anyone, and by forming a network with IT companies around the world. By developing and investing in the blockchain technology, Kakao will seek various growth strategies and release new services as well as integrating related technologies to the existing Kakao service. The developer community will be activated to activate the blockchain technology, and the supports for education, Hackathon, and conferences will be also provided.
“The paradigm of IT industry is changing rapidly. Kakao is not bound to the frame based on experience that has presented the new paradigm of Internet and mobile until now and will try continuously what users of the age wants. I believe that Kakao's service and technological innovation will bring new value to users' lives.” – said CEO Mason Yeo.