Business to Watch

Gwangju Biz highlights innovative small to mid-sized businesses in Jeolla Province that are bringing entrepreneurial spirit to the marketplace.

Myung Shin Medical

Written By Jessica Shultz
Interview interpretation by Cho Nam-hee

The way medical treatment is approached is changing rapidly. As medical treatment shifts focus from healing to prevention, advancements in biotechnology continue to be important. Infrared ray heating treatment devices are just one of many products in demand for health and cosmetic use. Gwangju News recently met Son Jong-gi, the owner and CEO of Myung Shin Medical based in Buk-gu, Gwangju. Myun Shin Medical opened in 1999 as one of the first far-infrared ray heating treatment devices for medical use.

GWANGJU NEWS (GN): How did Myun Shin Medical begin and describe its place in the medical industry?
Son Jong-gi: Myun Shin Medical manufactures thermal machines for health and cosmetic use. The company was co-founded in 1999 and was the first of this type of technology. In the 17 years since it was founded, Myun Shin Medical has remained competitive and continues to be a leader in the thermal machine market. Being one of the first companies to create a thermal therapeutic machine has been very positive for our company.

GN: How has the technology evolved since 1999?
Son Jong-gi: When the company was founded, we used an infrared thermal therapeutic machine called the rainbow that heated using sand. This machine would use light to penetrate the human body and quickly dominated the market. Through customer feedback on health and cosmetic uses and exposure to new innovations, our company discovered a new way to apply our technology across products. Our body-length capsule is no longer fully enclosed and now heats with light instead of sand.

GN: It seems like timing had a lot to do with your companys continued success. Are there other factors that have contributed to your leadership in the market?
Son Jong-gi: We are very glad we began with this technology early on because we were able to get a head start and take a large portion of the market. We have maintained market leadership through technological innovation and implementing customer feedback [ahead of] our competition. Myun Shin Medical strives to become a world leader through continued breakthroughs in medical technology. Technological innovation to deliver the highest quality product has always been our primary focus.

GN: You mentioned Myun Shin Medical is focused on being a world-leader. Can you tell me more about the international markets you are focused on?
Son Jong-gi: Yes, we are heavily invested in international markets. Currently we are focused on marketing efforts in Japan, Europe and the United States. We’re also focused on areas of Korea, such as Seoul and Busan.

GN: Given regulations, I imagine it is difficult to sell within such different areas. Could you give our readers an idea of the process that is involved?
Son Jong-gi: Product certification has been the most difficult part of international product implementation. Certain countries are harder than others to certify products in. Scandinavian countries take longer to certify products, due to strict environmental regulations. To comply with these certification regulations in Scandinavian and other European Union countries, we have modified our product offering. [Despite] added costs, selling to these markets is a large opportunity for our company. Countries in the Middle East are also difficult because of strict certification requirements for medical devices.

GN: Are there other processes outside of certification that Myun Shin Medical has been focused on?
Son Jong-gi: In 2013 our product obtained certification status as a certified product of Korea. This is something our company is very proud of. Our company has also invested much time and money into securing international patents for our panel heating technology.

GN: Do you have prior experience running a business? If not, what made you decide to start?
Son Jong-gi: Before founding this company I worked in marketing roles and my co-founding partner worked in electronics. We both had some experience with medical products and saw the growth of the field as a large opportunity for this type of equipment.

GN: For our readers who want to see this technology, where can they learn more?
Son Jong-gi: Our company has an experience center in downtown Gwangju at the Chonnam Girls High School. For anyone interested in seeing the technology, you can visit us at the experience center.

Information about Myun Shin Medical is also available online at http://msmedi.com/engver/pdg.html.

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