written by CSO at STAYGE labs, Clara YoonJin Chang
On a very hot summer day, my friend Michael gave me a call that he had to see me before I moved to San Francisco. Michael showed up at the restaurant where I was trying to enjoy my last Korean food before I moved to San Francisco. This was an unusual act of Michael that I knew he was going to tell me something big.
I could not figure out what he was going to tell but when he showed up, I could tell he was determined to work on a big project together.
Michael was CEO of Wish Korea( Company name: Contextlogic Korea) and ran the Korean office of Formation8 (Founded by Palantir founder, Joe Lonsdale and LG’s successor, Brian Koo), formerly the largest and the most well-known VC in both Korea and Silicon Valley.
Michael traveled the world and helped entrepreneurs as a promising VC and I was a Partner at Kstartup which was the first Korean accelerator in Korea partnering with Google to help Korean entrepreneurs going global( Kstartup’s most famous portfolio is “Korbit,” the first bitcoin exchange in Korea).
We worked at the same building at Dcamp in Gangnam and we were getting along really well because of sharing the same values in the tech startup industry; however, we never shared any thoughts of becoming entrepreneurs.
Then in 2015, something changed for both of us. Both Michael and I decided to leave the investment side and become entrepreneurs by ourselves.
He wanted to start STAYGE Labs with me and it is because I have experience in working in both the entertainment and technology industries. At that time, we were the only people in the tech industry who understood the agony. In 2015 the entertainment industry was slowly adopting the tech world but it was still too early for them to absorb enough technology to help more artists and fans.
Michael has a brother, “NASSUN”, a well-known producer and rapper in Korea. Michael wanted to help him focus on creating music that he really truly wants to make rather than what the market wants.
He thought if he could create a platform that is more democratic and has a direct way to connect fans and the artist, he could probably help many artists who want to create music or any form of art for their fans, and yet, they are still able to feed themselves.
His eyes were determined when he talked to me about the mission; how we can truly create a platform to help these artists and fans.
The Mission that is so mesmerizing that even after 6 years later, we are still serving…is
“Connecting global fans and the artists through a technology platform to help the artist creating music based on their interaction with fans.”
I could not agree more since I was 2010 Miss Korea and a TV host before I got into the technology industry. I understand exactly what it is like to be rejected or to wait outside of the audition room, getting nervous, waiting to be chosen with the heart of a desire to connect with people through my own talent. I discovered after years of working in the TV industry that I am more passionate about creating something to help people through technology; however, in my heart, I have always wanted to help the artists or people who want to create something valuable and touching in the world.
In 2015, I co-founded LifeSite, a personal data storage company in Silicon Valley that so I could not join Michael to do STAYGE Labs right away. But in 2017, I decided to help him no matter what because I believe our mission can help millions of artists and fans and really create music to touch our souls based on their tighter interaction; just like what BTS is now showing to the world.
This is why we, STAYGE Labs have hustled over the last 6 years and are now ready to show and reach out to you more with our Vision.
“STAYGE Labs wants to become the best global entertainment combined technology platform that connects the fans and the artists globally.”
It has been a 6 years journey of ups and downs; we believe we help the world to help artists and fans with the music you love.