Zero Space, a domestic fashion brand, was launched with the support of Yuhan-Kimberly, a South Korea personal care products manufacturer, as part of efforts to help senior citizens.
The fashion brand is a collaboration between local senior dressmakers and young marketers.
It has now grown to join overseas fashion design fairs, such as Maison et Objet Paris and Centrestage in Hong Kong. The brand’s sales have also increased by some 270 percent, according to Yuhan-Kimberly.
The company has been stepping up efforts to promote the senior population’s participation in the business world, amid Korea’s aging population.
Recognizing that the rising number of senior citizens could provide opportunities, the company has been implementing measures since 2012 to create business opportunities for seniors as part of its project to create shared value.
Along with the campaign “Seniors are Resources,” the company has formed a fund to foster senior care by providing health and sanitation education to senior facilities, helping small senior businesses and creating new job models for senior citizens. In this way, Yuhan-Kimberly has created some 400 job positions for senior citizens here as of this year.
Seniors and Youth, or SAY, is another business model supported by Yuhan-Kimberly. It benefits the elderly by providing a platform through which they are hired to teach students the Korean language.
It now has 22 instructors and has sold over 1,000 lessons in the past year. Out of 22 instructors, 75 percent are aged 50 and above. They are retired professionals with backgrounds in the corporate sector as well as education, the company said.
The population of senior citizens aged 65 and above accounted for some 13 percent of the entire population as of last year. There has also been an increasing number of elderly who seek work after retirement. However, the senior industry in Korea remains relatively small, compared to other countries such as Germany and Japan, the company said.
By Shim Woo-hyun (firstname.lastname@example.org)