AgeFree Secures Seed Investment for ‘1000jobs’ Midlife Career Education Platform

Korean startup AgeFree, the operator of the midlife career education platform ‘1000jobs‘, has successfully secured seed investments from Kakao Ventures, Korea Investment Partners, and Channel-Bom. Remarkably, this investment was secured a mere three months after the corporation’s inception. ‘

1000jobs’ offers job training opportunities regardless of age or experience, spanning fields such as interior construction, forklift operation, and dog grooming, through both online and offline platforms. It has partnered with offline training centers nationwide to connect individuals seeking job training. Students can not only avail themselves of government support programs for classes but also acquire practical information on re-employment and entrepreneurship, including desired job information, training locations, and employment rates all at once. Post-education, facilitation of re-employment and entrepreneurship connections will also be provided.

AgeFree was founded with a vision to create an environment where anyone, regardless of age, can embark on new journeys through learning. Its objective is to help middle-aged and older adults flexibly navigate income gaps after retirement and alleviate economic insecurities. According to Statistics Korea, by 2025, South Korea is poised to enter a super-aged society, with the population aged 65 and older exceeding 20%. However, with the average retirement age being below 50, there exists an income gap until the age of pension receipt at 65. Despite the increasing elderly population, inadequate financial preparation post-retirement has led to growing concerns among middle-aged and older adults, prompting expectations for solutions.

With the raised investment, AgeFree will focus on developing the ‘1000jobs’ service. Plans include enhancing services to facilitate easy and rapid access to job information for middle-aged and older adults seeking re-employment or entrepreneurship opportunities. The goal is to innovate the existing job training market for the 40-50 age group, which consists of approximately 20 million people, by preemptively digitizing the surge in demand for job training in an aging society.

AgeFree is led by Kim Ji-hyun, who successfully sold the coding education service ‘Entry’ to Naver, and a team comprising Shin Yong-woo, who gained experience in the adult IT job training market through Naver Connect, and developers with experience in the development cycle from Silicon Valley startups.

Jang Dong-wook, Director at Kakao Ventures, stated, “AgeFree, with meaningful execution and successful experiences in the online education market, is addressing significant issues such as senior income gaps and re-employment difficulties, starting from the small unit of job training connections.” He expressed deep empathy for the problem, seeing it as a crucial issue to tackle in the future, with over 700,000 retirees expected annually. He judged AgeFree as a team well-equipped with experience and capabilities to address this issue.

Kim Ji-hyun, CEO of AgeFree, said, “We will directly create an environment that is easily accessible to those seeking new job opportunities while innovating the fragmented existing job training market through digitalization to meet the increasing demand, and we will grow as a company redefining life and occupations in the aging society.”

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