Start-Up (South Korean TV series) – Wikipedia

No. Title Directed by Written by Original release date 1 “Start-Up” Oh Choong-hwan Park Hye-ryun October 17, 2020 ( ) 15 years ago, Seo Dal-mi ( Heo Jung-eun ) and Seo In-jae ( Lee Re ) ‘s parents, Cha Ah-hyeon ( Song Seon-mi ) and Seo Chung-myung ( Kim Joo-hun ) were divorced. Dal-mi bide with Chung-myung, who started his own company after resigning, which had resulted in the disassociate. interim, Ah-hyun remarried and took In-jae with her to the US, assuming the surname Won from her stepfather. Choi Won-deok ( Kim Hae-sook ), Dal-mi and In-jae ‘s grandma, a corn frump shop owner, gave shelter to young Ji-pyeong ( Nam Da-reum ), an orphan and winner of a virtual investment competition. With his help, Won-deok opened a bank account. As Dal-mi felt alone, her grandma made Ji-pyeong write letters to Dal-mi under the pen name Nam Do-san ( Nam Joo-hyuk ) a winner of the Mathematics Olympiad. Both exchanged letters until Ji-pyeong moved to Seoul. In the meanwhile, Ji-pyeong made Won-deok ‘s money, unwittingly to her, tenfold from his gig at stock investments. Chung-myung successfully secured an investment for his startup but afterwards died from injuries sustained by a car crash on his way to the pitching .
In the present, Ji-pyeong (Kim Seon-ho) and In-jae (Kang Han-na) are guest lecturers at an event hosted by Sandbox, where Dal-mi (Bae Suzy) is one of the attendees. In-jae invites Dal-mi to a ‘Networking Event’ with Do-san, to prove that her choice of going off with her mother was right. Ji-pyeong, now a successful venture capitalist reunites with Won-deok. The episode ends at Samsan Tech, where the real Nam Do-san (Nam Joo-hyuk) successfully programs his optical image recognition software. 2 “Family, Friends, Fools” Oh Choong-hwan Park Hye-ryun October 18, 2020 ( ) Dal-mi, who still believes Nam Do-san actually wrote her letters 15 years ago, is determined to find him and prove to her sister that she too lives a good life. Won-deok, still concealing Ji-pyeong’s identity to her, asks him to find the real Nam Do-san, who now co-owns a startup company called Samsan Tech with Kim Yong-san and Lee Chul-san. Do-San’s parents withdraw their investment after discovering a bug in his visual recognition software. To recoup the lost money, he puts a baseball signed by Park Chan-ho for sale. Dal-mi, discovering the item online, arranges with him to meet at Sandbox but was stopped by Ji-pyeong, who gives letters written by her (addressed to Do-san) to him. At the office of Samsan Tech, Ji-pyeong requests him to meet Dal-mi at the networking event, but he asks Ji-Pyeong in return to let Samsan Tech be a part of “Sandbox”, a deal that that Ji-pyeong refuses. Do-san shows up anyway and finally meets Dal-mi. The episode ends with Samsan Tech winning the CODA competition in the US. 3 “Angel” Oh Choong-hwan Park Hye-ryun October 24, 2020 ( )

Dal-mi meets her mother again for the first time since the divorce, this time with Do-san who successfully impresses her with the help of Ji-pyeong. Do-san reveals his interest in Dal-mi and decides to keep in contact with her. Due to his inexperience with women, Ji-pyeong asks Do-san to forward him every single message he receives from Dal-mi. When Dal-mi says she wants to visit Do-san at his office, Ji-pyeong creates a makeshift office in his dining room to make a good impression for her. Dal-mi reveals that she quit her job and wants to start her own company, just like Do-san did. Meanwhile, Ah-hyun suspects that Sang-su, In-Jae’s stepbrother, can potentially oust her daughter as the CEO for the family company. In-jae is forced to control its operation in the US, but she refuses and resigns. The episode ends with the Do-san family watching Samsan Tech’s victory speech for the CODA competition in embarrassment, but Alex Kwon shows interest in them. 4 “Sandbox” Oh Choong-hwan Park Hye-ryun October 25, 2020 ( ) Dal-mi bumps into Do-san at a bookstore and makes plans for what is supposed to be his birthday, as written in Ji-pyeong’s letters to her. Ji-pyeong once again intervenes by turning his dining room into an office for Samsan Tech. Samsan Tech’s real office is flooded with potential investors after hearing their company winning the CODA competition. In-jae manages to recruit a few colleagues from her former business to join her startup. Her mom initially disagrees, but eventually warms up to the idea. At Sandbox’s 12th hackathon, Do-san’s real identity is revealed and In-jae invites Samsan Tech to join her team. Dal-mi also wants to be their CEO and Do-san chooses her over In-jae. The episode ends with the CEO of Sandbox, Yoon Seon-hak, reading In-jae’s application which reminds her of In-jae’s father, who pitched her his business in the first episode and named the platform as Sandbox. 5 “Hackathon” Oh Choong-hwan Park Hye-ryun October 31, 2020 ( ) Ji-pyeong asks his secretary Dong-cheong to replace him as a mentor at the Hackathon, yet keeps supervising Samsan Tech’s progress. Being one team member short, Dal-mi recruits Sa-ha, with whom she once picked a fight over a Sandbox interview practice book at the bookstore, as her designer. They aim to build a machine learning program that can detect fake handwritings, an idea then stolen by In-jae’s team as a program that makes handwritings. Before the presentation, Ji-pyeong tells the San boys that he will invest in their company if they fail to enter Sandbox. During In-jae’s presentation, her father suggests they test Samsan Tech’s with their program, but the handwriting passes the detection. Despite that, both of them are allowed to enter Sandbox. At the end of the episode, Alex Kwon, one of the judges from CODA’s competition and also the hackathon, meets Do-san’s parents. During the hackathon judgment round, Alex pitches for Samsan Tech to enter Sandbox. 6 “Key Man” Oh Choong-hwan Park Hye-ryun November 1, 2020 ( ) Do-san finally manages to correct his program that can detect the fake handwritings generated by Injae Company. At the mentor selection, Seon-hak chooses Injae company as their mentor after In-jae identifies herself as the girl on the swing, which is now the logo of Sandbox. Despite interest from Alex Kwon, Dal-mi picks Ji-pyeong as their mentor. At a due diligence process with Ji-pyeong, Yong-san and Chul-san leave because of a disagreement on who gets to hold the most shares. At night, Chul-san and Yong-san reminisce how they joined Do-san’s company. Both eventually agree to give up their shares. Ji-pyeong tells Dal-mi to make up a decision as the CEO, even if it can’t make everyone happy. Dal-mi finally decides that Do-san holds the majority share and everyone else gets a smaller portion. At the end of the episode, an unknown figure writes the word ‘Revenge’ and attaches it to the board during the Hackathon. The same person ties a flower at a bridge where someone jumped off the bridge there, with Seon-hak witnessing the incident. The figure steps into Sandbox and stops between the doors of Samsan Tech and Injae company. 7 “Burn Rate” Oh Choong-hwan Park Hye-ryun November 7, 2020 ( ) After Dal-mi proposed the share of each Samsan Tech’s employee to Ji-pyeong, Do-san decides to tell the truth about the letters by visiting Won-daek, Dal-mi’s grandmother. Ji-pyeong drives over to stop him and they both decide to stay silent about the letters. When the two become competitive in front of Dal-mi and Won-daek, Do-san accuses Ji-pyeong of being jealous. Grappling with his feelings for Dal-mi, Ji-pyeong then avoids her. Injae Company receives an investment of 300 million Won from Jeonghan bank. Knowing that Dal-mi is jealous, In-jae offers her an AI project from her father at the Morning Group. At the meeting, Dal-mi and Do-san learn that the project involves them doing work for part-time salary, in exchange for experience at Morning Group. Outraged by Woo-jung’s insult to Dal-mi, Do-san breaks his glass name tag into pieces and they both walk out. Ultimately, they agree to pursue Do-san’s project: an image recognition software with sound for the blind, inspired after Won-daek reveals to Do-san that she is going blind. Won-daek asks whether Dal-mi prefers the old Do-san (Ji-pyeong 15 years ago) or the now Do-san. Dal-mi replies that she is still getting to know the now Do-san, but there are moments that excite her. Later they have one of those moments on the roof-top. 8 “Backup” Oh Choong-hwan Park Hye-ryun November 8, 2020 ( ) After consulting with a blind employee at Sandbox, Samsan Tech determines to enhance their image recognition app to include voice queries generated by Yeong-sil, a voice assistant, later renaming the app as NoonGil. Ji-pyeong is unconvinced because the app will be more expensive to operate the more people use it, but Dal-mi invokes the words on the letters he wrote her to move his heart. He finally gives her a list of companies that do CSR projects for the blind so that Samsan Tech can find potential investors. While meeting with the companies, Dal-mi ends up in Gapyeong and Ji-pyeong finds her. Despite initially low download numbers and ratings from the app that disappoints the rest of the team, Do-san’s cousin taps in baseball athlete Park Chan-ho to market it. Dal-mi finally finds out about her grandmother going blind. Do-san meets with Morning Group to settle for his rage incident, while Dal-mi ends up there too with In-jae in a last effort to find funding. Dal-mi threatens to leak a recording of their last meeting to the press unless they settle by giving their CSR funds to Samsan Tech. While reviewing her proposal written with feedback from Ji-pyeong, she notices that his handwriting is the same as the letters she received 15 years ago. Ji-pyeong sees Do-san leaving Sandbox and gives him Dal-mi’s hair tie to return to her, to which Do-san becomes jealous. 9 “Risk” Oh Choong-hwan Park Hye-ryun November 14, 2020 ( )

A man shows up to Sandbox and throws an egg at In-jae after a company using her software caused the security department to be fired. Do-san’s parents are furious after seeing an interview of Woon-jung about Samsan Tech, who mentions Dal-mi, not Do-san, as the CEO. Being drunk, Do-san is brought by Ji-pyeong to Dal-mi’s house, where Dal-mi offers Do-san to stay for the night, but Ji-pyeong joins too. The next day, Do-san takes Dal-mi and her grandmother to the beach. As Do-san goes home and is confronted by his parents, he admits that he won the high school mathematics Olympiad by cheating. The guilt caused him to give his gold medal to another participant. Meeting Won-deok, Ji-pyeong confesses to her that he has feelings for Dal-mi. As requested by Won-deok, Ji-pyeong travels back to Seonju to pick up the last letter Dal-mi wrote to him at the birdhouse, but she coincidentally shows up and finds out the truth. 10 “Demo Day” Oh Choong-hwan Park Hye-ryun November 15, 2020 ( ) Do-san finds Dal-mi and they cry together while he explains why he kept lying. Ji-pyeong finally admits that he wrote the letters and his feelings for Dal-mi. When Dal-mi confronts In-jae for claiming to be ‘the girl on the swing’, Do-san intervenes to defend her. Ji-pyeong tells the Samsan Tech team that he will support them should they fail the Demo Day, and does not want Dal-mi to worry. After telling Dal-mi to forget everything she thought about him before, Do-san approaches Alex Kwon, who had approached him to offer him a job at his company 2STO. Yong-san shoves Ji-pyeong while asking about why his intense questioning during Demo Day for Sandbox’s 2nd residency caused his older brother to commit suicide. Meanwhile, having her money cut off from her husband in retaliation of In-jae’s resignation from Nature Morning, Ah-hyun has been desperately trying to save money and looking for a new job, including at Won-deok’s corn dog stand. At the end of the episode, Ji-pyeong encounters the same stranger who sat with Dal-mi earlier. 11 “Exit” Oh Choong-hwan Park Hye-ryun November 21, 2020 ( ) Do-san approaches Alex and begs him to acquire all the employees of Samsan Tech, but he tells Do-san that Injae Company is also in his consideration. Ji-pyeong finds out about Yong-san’s older brother, who was at the demo day presenting his company called Charging Partner. Out of guilt, he is not present for judgment at the current Demo Day. There, In-jae demonstrates an AI that predicts crimes before they happen on CCTVs. Do-San’s father amongst the audience confronts her as the AI costs him his job. She defends herself by using his son’s entrance into Sandbox to justify her reason. Dal-mi on behalf of Samsan Tech introduces NoonGil. Alex asks both companies for a duel of their optical image recognition technology using single-board computers, in which Samsan Tech prevails. Do-san shows Dal-mi his real office before their move to Sandbox, but there they run into Chul-san and Sa-ha. That night, Dal-mi proposes a self-driving car as their next venture. Meanwhile, Alex hands them a deal to acquire Samsan Tech for three billion won, with a contingency that they work for 3 years in Silicon Valley. Ji-pyeong, hearing the news, attempts to stop the deal, as he sees this as an acqhire, but he is too late. 12 “Acqhire” Oh Choong-hwan Park Hye-ryun November 22, 2020 ( ) Samsan Tech is acqhired by 2STO. The next day Dal-Mi and Sa-ha are fired as according to the contract, they will recruit only the engineers from Samsan Tech. Yong-san reveals them the truth about his brother and Ji-pyeong, which is the reason he prevented Ji-pyeong from calling Dal-mi to stop the deal. Upon Ji-pyeong telling them that there is nothing they can do now and that NoonGil will be dissolved, Do-san picks a fight with him. After the fight, Do-san pleas with him to help Samsan tech and reveals that Won-deok is going blind, the reason behind the inception of NoonGil. Ji-pyeong goes to Won-deok and cries seeing her use NoonGil. Afterwards, he runs into Dal-mi and they have dinner together, Dal-mi asking for his advice. During a date on his birthday, Do-san tells Dal-mi that he has found a way to cancel the acquisition, but she intentionally shows disinterest, urging him to leave for San Francisco to pursue his dream. Feeling guilty for Dal-mi, In-jae admits to Seon-hak that she is not ‘the girl on the swing’. Seon-hak talks to Dal-mi about her father and his final day. Dal-mi applies to be a strategic planning manager at Injae Company. Ji-pyeong and Do-san negotiate with Alex to continue their work with NoonGil. At the end of the episode, after the breakup, Do-san walks and cries profusely following a recitation of Dal-mi’s letters. 13 “Comfort Zone” Oh Choong-hwan Park Hye-ryun November 28, 2020 ( ) Dal-mi is accepted into Injae Company as their COO, after she recited In-jae ‘s words once besides said by their father about him resigning to pursue newly innovations that can finally make old technologies and homo work disused. Since the learning, NoonGil continues to be developed to include designation of music pills, while Dal-mi is late recruited as the CEO of Cheongmyeong Company, a auxiliary of Injae Company, and the Morning Group expands to be the largest AI team in South Korea. meanwhile, Won-deok sells her corndog food truck .
Three years later, Dal-mi is working with In-jae to develop a self-driving car. Dal-mi and Ji-pyeong have grown closer while Sa-ha has trouble committing to any new relationships. Do-san, Chul-san, and Yong-san return to South Korea for a vacation at the end of their 3-year contract at 2STO. Ji-pyeong decides now is the time for him to take the next step in his relationship with Dal-mi, but then bumps into Do-san. Sa-ha runs into Chul-san and Yong-san. Suddenly, Cheongmyeong is hit by a ransomware and Dal-mi calls Sa-ha for help. She then receives a call from an unknown number which turns out to be Do-san. He, Yong-san, Chul-san, and Sa-ha arrive at Sandbox to decrypt the data. Unable to resolve the ransomware, two of Cheongmyeong’s programmers resign. Do-san, Chul-san, and Yong-san choose not to renew their contract with 2STO and stay in South Korea. In an epilogue scene, Do-san is shown driving with his mother as he received a call from Chul-san about a ransomware attack at Dal-mi’s company and then called her. 14 “Elevator Speech” Oh Choong-hwan Park Hye-ryun November 29, 2020 ( )

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Dal-mi, still shocked with Do-san’s arrival, is comforted by Ji-pyeong. Do-san is about to meet her to pick up his left behind coat, but is stopped by Ji-pyeong. Do-san, Chul-san and Yong-san reestablish Samsan Tech and interview with a magazine. Dal-mi’s autonomous car is about to apply for a permit, but another car named Momo, developed by the Morning Group, is revealed to have already obtained a permit. In-jae storms the Morning Group building to confront Sang-su about recruiting two of her programmers and asks Dal-mi to recruit the developers from Samsan Tech. Dal-mi refuses, but In-jae threatens to fire her. At their office, Dal-mi asks Samsan Tech to join, but Do-san refuses and says he does not want to see her again. Trying to forget Dal-mi, Do-san escapes to his uncle’s cabin outside Seoul, but Dal-mi manages to find him that night. Chul-san meets Sa-ha again in an attempt to recruit her, while Yong-san meets Seon-hak for advice on investors. Yong-san then meets Ji-pyeong and tells him that he wants honest advice. Finally, Dal-mi’s autonomous car Tarzan launches on a test drive for a temporary permit application. Meanwhile, Ah-hyeon reveals she is divorced and In-jae calls her lawyer to give up her adoption rights. At the end of the episode, Dal-mi shows up to Do-san’s house while he was away to give his left behind jacket. After they reconcile, Do-san states he wishes to buy Cheongmyeong Company. 15 “MVP (Minimum Viable Product)” Oh Choong-hwan Park Hye-ryun December 5, 2020 ( ) At the test drive, Yong-san and Chul-san reveal they rewrote the original program written by Cheongmyeong’s former developers. The car successfully performs and obtains the permit. In-jae wants to submit the permit for a smart city project bid, but Dal-mi disagrees, as she is unconfident of winning it. Do-san, Ji-pyeong, and Dal-mi are awkwardly stuck in an elevator together when it temporarily breaks. Do-san asks Dal-mi to try pursuing the bid despite only a slim chance of winning and rejection from Ji-pyeong, but leaves the final decision to her. Ji-pyeong asks Do-san to give his letters from Dal-mi back, but he refuses. Ji-pyeong meets him at his house to demand the letters but drinks with him and his parents to buy time. Do-san and Ji-pyeong have a heart to heart while drunk and Ji-pyeong tells Do-san to see who Dal-mi really loves. Ji-pyeong tries to avoid Dal-mi and says it as they bump into each other. Ultimately, Dal-mi decides to enter the bid. Sa-ha approaches Chul-san and says she wants to have a relationship with him under two circumstances which Chul-san agrees to. Chul-san gets jealous when Yong-san plays anagram with her to figure out who was behind the ransomware attack. Do-san stumbles upon the name Apollon Artemis circled among the possible combinations. Ah-hyeon uses the divorce money to rent a place for a corn dog business with nearly blind Won-deok. Doo-jung plans to ruin Cheongmyeong’s chance to win the bid in retaliation for the divorce by asking a reporter through his son Sang-soo, to write about their ransomware attack they suffered with. In an epilogue scene, Do-san tells Dal-mi that during his tenure at 2STO, he volunteered to work on the self-driving car after Dal-mi’s idea at their last meeting with Samsan Tech. 16 “Scale Up” Oh Choong-hwan Park Hye-ryun December 6, 2020 ( ) Do-san stumbles upon the term Apollon Artemis ( Apollo and Artemis, gods from greek myth who are twins ) in the ransomware, which he recalls as Sin-heong and Sin-jeong, the former developers of Injae Company. Dong-chun meets a reporter and gives Ji-pyeong his commercial enterprise card, who tells him that the reporter constantly writes articles attacking start-ups unless given a stock in their company. Ji-pyeong runs to their office to stop the interview, but In-jae tells him that she is confident that they can outsmart the reporter. They tell the reporter they already have the names of the perpetrators of the ransomware attack and the originator, Sang-su, who are arrested by the patrol. The reporter no longer teams up with the fifth columnist. During the invite day for the autonomous car system at the DQ fresh city, they pass as one of the finalists. The friends all give unlike promises that could be borderline absurd if they win the bid, and Do-san says he will propose which surprises Dal-mi. During a lecture by Woo-jung, In-jae confronts him with the withdrawal of her adoption rights and announces her name reverse to Seo In-jae. She last meets Won-deok for the first time since her departure to the US at her old home plate and shows the revocation of her adoption. During her visit, Won-deok tells Ji-pyeong to always call or visit her even when he is doing well. Ji-pyeong comes across a caller that provides aids for orphans in the same situation he was once in and personally invests. Ji-pyeong besides runs into Dal-mi and tells her that the Nam Do-san in the letters are not him, as he had n’t looked for her during the 15 years, yet Do-san met her the beginning day he read them. Dal-mi aspires to scale up indeed In-jae asks Seon-hak on behalf of her to look for an investor, which she forwards to Ji-pyeong. He meets with Do-san to state his purpose to invest, which he accepts. Dal-mi is shown presenting at the bid .
In an epilogue scene, fast forward to 2020, Dal-mi and Do-san are still the CEO and CTO of Cheongmyeong Company, respectively. Pictures show them married, signaling that they won the bid. In-jae and Ji-pyeong are also still part of the company, ending with all four on their way to a shareholder meeting.
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