How Do You Become a Unicorn Company?
How Do You Become a Unicorn Company?
  • Yun Ji-hui
  • 승인 2019.03.16 21:02
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There are many companies which can be called unicorn companies. What is a unicorn company? ST talks about unicorn company and their management strategy. ...............................................................Ed

“Start-up” is a term coined in Silicon Valley. It refers to a new venture company that has just been established. As newly developed companies emerge steadily, there is a growing interest in start-up. Among many Startups, a highly successful company is called a unicorn company. It is an unlisted start-up company with a corporate value of more than 1 trillion won. The term was used to denote that it can exist only in imagination, just like a unicorn. The representative unicorn companies are Uber, Airbnb and Korea’s Coupang. Let us look at how these companies have became representative unicorn companies and find out about success strategy.

Uber is an app that provides transportation sharing services, which first first started in San Francisco in June 2010. In short, it is a technology platform that connects passengers and drivers through an app. Uber has created an almost perfect solution to the complaints and problems regarding the existing taxi system. The existing taxi system has two main problems. First, the passengers have to wave their hands while on the street in order for them to get a taxi. Seond, it is hassle to prepare a card or cash when passengers arrive at their destination. By using Google Maps, Uber can tell where the nearest taxi is located and also set up a place for the passenger to meet with a taxi driver. In other words, the passengers can get a taxi with just one click. Uber introduced a system that automatically calculates the card set by an app. It eliminates the hassle and allows a passenger to check the estimated fees prior to boarding. Furthermore, Uber has grown steadily by using its driver rating system. Consumers leave a rating for the driver after using Uber or cancel the call if the driver of the called vehicle has a low rating. It has a win-win structure that consumers can use high quality services and drivers can provide better service.


Airbnb, which is an abbreviation of AirBed & Breakfast, is an accommodation sharing app that started in San Francisco in 2008. The hosts post information about the accommodation in the app and the guests use the app to book and pay for the accommodation. Airbnb has set a clear target for global travelers. By focusing on global markets, a payment system has been developed that can be used all over the world. By introducing credit card payment systems, such as Visa and Master Card and reflecting the exchange rate in real time, the global usage rate has rapidly increased. In addition they provided information about the host through SNS such as Facebook and Twitter. It can reduce the anxiety about safety when using the accommodation. Moreover, the guests can save on the cost of accommodation, stay with real life people, and learn about the culture of the country. Having set a clear target to focus on, Airbnb now has access to more that 200 countries.


Coupang, which refers to coupon bursting, emerged as a late starter of social commerce in 2010. Anyone who registers with Coupang can freely enter the store and sell the product. Consumers can also enter Coupang and buy products. Coupang makes a profit on commission in this process. There are two main reasons why Coupang, the late starter of social commerce, was successful. It had a distinct goal of delivering whatever customers ordered in real time and a clear vision of ‘customer-centric.’ In order to realize this goal, Coupang has created rocket delivery and Coupangman. The rocket delivery strategy refers to the delivery of the product the day after it was ordered. This system accurately creates a good image in the customer’s mind. Coupangman is a delivery man hired by Coupang firsthand. It can build Coupangman’s delivery network and gain customer trust through friendly delivery. They established an open customer center for 365 days, and it is also open during weekends, holidays and weekdays lunch hours. In addition, they operated that is exclusively for refunds and product recalls. By progressing with a clear goal and vision, Coupang has become a leading unicorn company in Korea.

Peter Drucker, who is a world renowned business scholar, asked the following five most important questions about establishing a management strategy.; What is your mission?; Who is your customer?; What does your customer value?; What is your result?; What is your plan? Based on these five questions, establishing and implementing a management strategy, which includes the use of Uber, Airbnb, and Coupang, will help you grow into a unicorn company.

Yun Ji-hui (Planning Editor)

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