Open Gallery, an art rental service startup has secured a US $1.7 m (KRW 2b) investment from LB Investment. Despite having been established only two years, the investment was able to proceed based on the great potential of the company to pioneer the art rental market in Korea.
The combined experience and skills of the founding members has provided the company with a robust foundation: Park Yi Gyu responsible for art has worked previously for Booz Allen Consulting; Hong Ji Hae responsible for Arts graduated from Seoul University; and Go Doo Ee previously worked for Samsung Electronics. Open Gallery is a platform that allows aspiring artists to market their works.
Currently Open Gallery has a base of 250 artists with over 4,000 art pieces. Customers are able to choose art pieces for rental with rental prices starting at US$26 (KRW 30k) per month. The art pieces are rotated on a three-month basis and where the art piece is purchased by the renter, the rental fee is returned.
A representative of LB Investment commented, “The domestic art rental market has not been properly established, however we see boundless potential in this market”. “We are excited about having the opportunity to support a young company and create a new market”.
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