Strategist, entrepreneur | CEO of Innomove | Affiliated VP of Plansahead
- Gangnam-gu, Seoul, Korea
Hyokon Zhiang's Overview
- Affiliated VP at PlansAhead
- CEO (Innomove Lab) at Innomove
- Group Management Advisor at Hwaseung Group
- CEO (Innomove Consulting) at Innomove
- Manager at Bain & Company
- Associate at A.T. Kearney
- Associate at STAR TV
- Product Planner at CJ Corporation
- Northwestern University - Kellogg School of Management
- Seoul National University
Hyokon Zhiang's Summary
Expert in business strategy and innovation, and an action-oriented leader.
Wide experiences in formulating creative strategies and planning and implementing tasks to execute the strategy.
Deep understanding of innovation in both theory and practice. Came up with the the online insurance business model in 2000 for a major insurance company, which was to become the first online insurance business in Korea, and one of the first globally.
As an action-oriented person, I have been an entrepreneur myself, in innovation consulting and internet fine arts.
Specialties: Innovation, strategy, entrepreneurship
Hyokon Zhiang's Experience
CEO (Innomove Lab)
Privately Held; 1-10 employees; Internet industry
September 2007 – Present (5 years 9 months) Korea
In the later part of 2007 Innomove became an Internet startup, to build new businesses for ourselves.
As we remained a self-funded small startup, I handled all business aspects including recruiting, finance, product ideation and wireframing, marketing and PR, alliances, and customer service, in addition to working with developers to create our web sites and apps.
In 2008 we launched Artpoli, social media and marketplace for fine arts, to make art more accessible for viewers and to give artists more opportunities to show their works. It now has more than 1000 artist members. We introduced truly social art contests, in which ordinary viewers, not art experts, voted online to select finalists. For some of these events, we successfully worked with large sponsor companies.
ReadBuild is an online self-publishing and social reading service, which we opened in 2011.
Group Management Advisor
2005 – 2010 (5 years) Korea
Hwaseung Group is a diversified manufacturer and trader of rubber-based automobile parts, industrial products, and sports footwear. I have advised the top management on vision, strategy, and organization of the group and business units.
In 2005 I worked on setting the group vision and strategy for 2010. We had about 10 executives, future leaders of the group chosen by the CEO representing all business units and the group and a team of supporting managers. I led this task force, work-planning, assigning responsibilities, facilitating workshops, communicating with the top management.
At first, many executives wanted to just aggregate the financial goals in their existing plans. I asked them to raise the goal significantly. They said it's impossible, but I told them if it's too doable, it's not a good vision. The group CEO agreed with me, and other executives gradually were convinced that they needed a challenging vision. After 5 years, Hwaseung group achieved the vision, and we set a new vision for 2020 that needed another dramatic leap forward and was named "Fly High Hwaseung."
Our advisory relationship has been on an as-needed basis. 2010 is just the last year when I worked for the group, and Hwaseung Group may ask for my advice again in the future.
CEO (Innomove Consulting)
Privately Held; 1-10 employees; Internet industry
September 2004 – 2007 (3 years) Korea
I left Bain to devote myself to innovatioin. I started as a sole proprietorship, and hired consultants as we increased revenues over time. We specialized in innovation consulting, giving innovative new business ideas or recommendations to renovate existing businesses.
Devised future business models for a large book retailer, covering offline, online and digital businesses. Client realized 2x profits after implementing one of our recommendations.
Developed an online education business model for a leading ecommerce company. The client company launched the business later.
Customer insights for a mobile handset manufacturer. Revealed reality very different from popular beliefs about Korean customers.
Due-diligence for three potential investment targets for a private equity: a chain restaurant, a sports goods retailer, a consumer product manufacturer.
New business ideas for a leading online game company.
Due diligence and new business ideas for a home interior business.
Developed various new business ideas for a leading telecom company.
Privately Held; 5001-10,000 employees; Management Consulting industry
August 2000 – August 2004 (4 years 1 month) Korea
Together with my Bain colleagues, I came up with the idea and designed the business model for an online insurance business, which later launched as the first online insurer in Korea and one of the earliest in the world.
I also was the lead project manager for the strategy and change management for a large life insurance company for over 2 years, the biggest project ever for Bain Seoul. We launched an online life insurance business unit, which was the first by a major insurer in Korea, as well as strengthened the existing offline business. In the process, my question of "why is starting a new business that competes with the incumbent so difficult?" led me to find 'Innovator's Dilemma' by Clayton Christensen, which confirmed much of my real experiences and hypotheses.
Also worked for clients in synthetic fiber, IT, and banking.
I was voted by consultants as the first recipient of the Best Coach Award of Bain Seoul.
Leaving Bain was not an easy decision, as I was the top performing manager at Bain Korea and was expected to be promoted to partner soon. I left to pursue my ideas around innovation more freely.
Partnership; 1001-5000 employees; Management Consulting industry
1995 – 2000 (5 years)
I joined A.T. Kearney's Seoul Office as the 6th consultant, when it did not have an office yet and worked out of a hotel room.
After MBA, it was a period of construction for broadband networks. I worked on new business projects for telecom and ISP among others. I worked in Portugal and Poland, as well as in Korea.
June 1998 – September 1998 (4 months) Hong Kong
I was a summer associate and worked on satellite TV joint venture projects in Hong Kong, Indonesia, and Korea. Though I was in the TV business, I have never worked with any actor or actress. I only did usual business development stuff, financial and strategic analysis.
I was very impressed with the culture of Star TV, which could be that of News Corp, the parent company. It was no bull shit and fat free. The program scheduling for the entire Asia was done by only 2-3 people.
1990 – 1995 (5 years)
I started at accounting department, and after my military service, worked at marketing and product strategy.
One noteworthy work was developing Sol-eui-noon (meaning Pine Bud). It was developed as a health drink for new generation. Until then, the health drinks were regarded as only for old people. Sol-eui-noon became a steady seller with annual sales reaching USD 20M, and there have been few if any me-too products even until now. This was my first experience in innovation.
Hyokon Zhiang's Honors and Awards
Best Coach at Bain & Company Seoul Office
The first recipient of the Best Coach award at Bain & Company Seoul Office.
Top Finance Graduate from Kellogg SchoolKellogg School of Management
- June 1999
Top Finance Student, selected by the finance faculty at Kellogg School.
Hyokon Zhiang's Publications
Hyokon Zhiang's Languages
Korean(Native or bilingual proficiency)
English(Full professional proficiency)
Hyokon Zhiang's Skills & Expertise
Hyokon Zhiang's Education
Northwestern University - Kellogg School of Management
MBA, Business, Finance, Operation
1997 – 1999
I graduated as the top finance student. I was, and am still, very honored to be chosen by the finance factulty who I learned from a lot. I liked derivatives so much that I almost joined Enron. Looking back, what I liked was not finance industry itself, but financial innovation.
Seoul National University
1986 – 1990
I was far from studying, playing guitar in a heavy-metal rock band formed during high school, Baduk(Go), and billiard. Maybe it's a reason why I found studying fun in my MBA days.
Hyokon Zhiang's Additional Information
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