Sports Business in Korea

After serving as a Marine during his military service in South Korea, Phill Shin (MSc Sports Marketing 2015) began to think about what he would do next. The inspiration to pursue his dream to build on a lifelong passion for sport struck after watching the Tom Cruise film, Jerry Maguire – Phill was motivated and began to research how to make it a reality.   

His journey saw Phill arrive in the UK at 25 years old. He started to improve his English and began undertaking a foundation course at SOAS. With Birkbeck a stone’s throw away, he became familiar with the College and the following year he’d enrolled on MSc in Sports Marketing.   

While studying Phill worked part-time at a bicycle shop in Great Portland Street – he was excited to be working in an industry he cared about while learning more about it as he studied. During his role in London, he was introduced to the CEO of cyclewear brand Rapha – years later he led the launch of the Rapha brand in Asia. Life in London presented many opportunities and Phill found his real workplace experiences brought a huge amount to his lectures. A particular highlight for him was ‘networking in the classroom and making international friends at Birkbeck, many of whom I’m still in touch with today.’   

Following his work, at the bicycle shop, Phill wanted to broaden his experience and learn from other sectors such as fashion and manufacturing. He began translating for the fashion brand All Saints for who he later launched the brand in Seoul some years later.  

Currently, Phill is based in South Korea working on several business ventures that still enable him to follow his passion for sport – particularly cycling. He has seen a huge uptake in the sport since the pandemic and next up is a collaboration with British Olympic Champion cyclist David Millar to launch his new clothing brand in Asia.