Some North Koreans joined a month-long startup nurturing program in Singapore last year, a move seen as Pyongyang’s moves to look for new business opportunities and secure an additional source of foreign currency, according to sources.
Building Amazing Start-up Here or BASH is an institute under Infocomm Investments that nurtures and incubates startups.
It provides a 3-month-long “accelerating” course aimed at helping startups get off the ground and an incubating course for those selected firms for up to some 7 months. Launched about two years ago, BASH offers mentoring, offices and other support aimed at helping small but promising companies.
The source told the Foreign Ministry’s joint press corps that the North Koreans did not join the courses with their own business ideas but went through the entire process learning how to find and support promising startup companies and help them advance to the market with their final products.
He remembered that the North Koreans showed eagerness to study and presented fast learning capability but cited lack of language skills and ability to “translate thinking into the market” as their major weaknesses.