South Korea – Hyundai Card has led the redevelopment of a 103-year-old marketplace in the southern city of Gwangju.
Before the redevelopment, just 36 of the once bustling marketplace’s 70 stores were open for business, and it was viewed by residents as more of a tourist attraction than a commercial centre.
Through the Gwangju Creative Economy Innovation Center, which was established by parent company Hyundai Motor Group in 2015, credit card company Hyundai Card has rebranded the marketplace as retail and cultural hotspot 1913 Songjeong-yeok. The company selected 17 young entrepreneurs from more than 100 applicants to open stores in the marketplace, inspiring innovation among the existing stores, which range from delicatessens to barber shops.
The opening of a nearby high-speed KTX railway connection in 2015 was a boon for the area and a new waiting lounge enables travellers to sample snacks while keeping an eye on the departure boards.
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