New Paradigm Investment made an announcement on Aug. 30 that it has invested in a medical device startup The Yeolrim that develops AI-based smart hearing aid.
The Yeolrim is a smart hearing aid manufacturing venture established in January 2015 and possesses unrivaled R&D technology and commercialization capabilities in the ear care and hearing loss areas of the IoMT (Internet of Medical Things), which are key areas of the fourth industry.
The company has recently taken the lead in improving the quality of life for the deaf by developing products and solutions that enable ear care according to the various hearing models of smart active hearing aids, which have improved sound quality using AI technology following 1 billion won in R&D project order.
According to a World Health Organization (WHO) 2018 report, the world's hard-hearing population stands at 470 million, with the number expected to rise rapidly to 900 million by 2050.
By linking smart healthcare IoMT device with a smartphone, The Yeolrim is currently developing a new product that allows users to measure their hearing ability in real-time and collect health data such as heart rate, exercise, dementia and hurt from a fall.
As a medical device startup with innovative core technologies for smart hearing aids, it has been certified by the U.S. Drug Administration (FDA) and it is expected to expand to overseas shipments starting in 2020.
"Our goal is to become a big data-based customized health management platform company through wearable devices beyond the hearing aid sector," said CEO Cho Dong-hyun of The Yeolrim, adding, “The smart hearing aids under development are expected to be released in 2020 and will focus on not only the domestic market but also the ultra-high price hearing aids global market within the next three years.”
"Smart hearing aid, which is equipped with high-tech technologies, is rapidly emerging as a food for the future in line with the trend of aging society and technological development," said Park Jae-hyun, co-CEO of New Paradigm Investment. "As a pain killer-type service that relieves inconvenience to consumers, the potential for rapid growth in the hearing aid market and the outstanding technology of The Yeolrim are investment backgrounds," he said.
Meanwhile, New Paradigm Investment, which was incorporated into a subsidiary of TS Investment, a venture capital firm that surpassed 800 billion won in operating assets as a KOSDAQ-listed company in April, is an officially registered accelerator to the Ministry of SMEs and Startups.