LatAm Venture Bulletin

LatAm Venture Bulletin September 19, 2018

Web Version

LatAm Venture Bulletin


> REGISTRATION IS CLOSING for the LAVCA Venture Investors Annual Meeting in New York on September 27.

> Additional program activities include a Welcome Cocktail hosted by Silicon Valley Bank for members, speakers, and the LAVCA VC Council and Tech Growth Coalition (Sept. 26); and an After Party hosted by Riverwood Capital on Sept. 27 at Tribeca 360.

> Access the PROGRAM AGENDA 📜.



📋 LAVCA is conducting the first-ever survey of Latin American startups.

We want to tell the world how many jobs startups in the region are creating, what the gender diversity is among startup founders, challenges for startup growth, and the impact startups are making in their market, sector, and community. Results will be shared globally to help put Latin American tech innovation on the map 🗺️.

All qualifying respondents will receive:

✔️ ALL LATIN AMERICAN STARTUPS ARE INVITED TO PARTICIPATE IN THE SURVEY. This survey is multiple choice and should take a startup CEO or founder no more than 12-15 minutes to complete. 


> Expansion confirms Rappi raised US$220m in its latest funding round (US$200m from DST Global, US$20m from existing investors Sequoia Capital, Andreessen Horowitz, and ONEVC).

  • Rappi connects over 2 million users and 10,000 stores and restaurants, and has over 1,500 employees and 18,000 rappitenderos.
  • 🚩JOIN Rappi Co-Founder & President Sebastian Mejia for a conversation on the battleground for the last mile at LAVCA’s Venture Investors Annual Meeting on Sept. 27 in New York.

> GGV Capital led a US$63m Series A investment in Yellow, a Brazilian dockless bike-sharing and e-scooter service, with participation from monashees+, Grishin Robotics, Base10 Partners, and Class 5. monashees+ and Grishin Robotics led a US$9m seed round in 2018.

  • Yellow is founded by Eduardo Musa, former CEO of bike manufacturer Caloi, and 99 co-founders Ariel Lambrecht and Renato Freitas.
  • Yellow launched in August in São Paulo, where the number of bike lanes has doubled since 2014.

> monashees+ and XP Investimentos made an undisclosed investment in Rebel, a personal credit startup for middle-class Brazilians, with participation from Point Break Capital and J. Malucelli. monashees+ was the company’s first investor in 2017.

> Aurus Capital made a US$3.5m Series A investment in Scarab, a Chilean mining tech company reducing waste material environmental impact. This is the company’s first investment.

  • Founder Jaime Briceño Sazo says Scarab has developed a way to recover calcium solutions from mining waste that can be re-used in mining, pharma and food use cases. His goal is to reduce the mass of mining waste disposal by 25% through recycling of calcium solutions in the waste.
  • Aurus also recently invested in Copptech Apparel, a Chilean company producing a proprietary antimicrobial, copper-based material for apparel.

> Domo Invest made a R$3m investment in Goomer, a self-service restaurant service platform. 

> E-Moving, a Brazilian mobility startup renting and selling electric bikes, raised R$3.1m from car rental company Movida and Componente, the family office of Bodytech and SoulCycle investor João Paulo Diniz, and angel investors.

> Harvard Angels, Anjos do Brasil, Insper Angels, and the Startup Farm accelerator made a R$1m investment in Incentiv, a Brazilian crowdfunding startup for tax-incentivized impact projects. 

> GVAngels made a R$400k investment in Instaviagem, a last-minute travel agency platform.

> Brazilian seed fund Abseed made an undisclosed seed investment in Movidesk, a Brazilian multi-channel help-desk platform. Abseed is also invested in Meetime, Aegro, and GoCache



> ALLVP exited delivery startup Cornershop through a US$225m sale to Walmart.

  • This transaction represents the largest VC-backed exit in Chile and Mexico since LAVCA began collecting data in 2008. It is Walmart’s first known startup acquisition in LatAm.
  • Cornershop’s unique customers have doubled in the past year. READ our interview with CEO Oskar Hjertonsson.
  • ALLVP partner Federico Antoni says it’s all about the team: “Tech startup success comes down to one thing: an exceptional team. Oskar, Daniel & Chaq are unique.”

> Berlin-based VC fund Project A exited Brazilian ecommerce company Evino through a sale to an undisclosed company.



> Mexican venture firm GC Capital announced a first close of MXN$100m for its second fund.



> ComparaOnline, a price comparison site for insurance and financial services in Latin America, acquired online insurance company ComparaMejor for an undisclosed amount.

  • Bamboo Capital and the IFC made a US$14m investment in ComparaOnline in 2017. KaszeK Ventures, Endeavor Catalyst, Rise Capital, and Ribbit Capital invested previously.
  • 🕶️ Cool founder story in this interview with CEO Sebastian Valin.

> MercadoLibre acquired Machinalis, a startup applying machine learning to product recommendation. Machinalis emerged from the math and computation department at La Universidad Nacional de Córdoba (UNC) and has a 60-person team.

> Mutant, a contact center technology platform that spun out of Genesys Prime, acquired software developer Dextra. Mutant also acquired quality management platform TSA, CCM7 and U-Near in 2016.

> UK-based IT service provider Logicalis acquired Chilean IT group Grupo Coasin.



> Oikocredit, Fiinlab, and Vox Capital made an undisclosed Series C investment in Avante, a Brazilian fintech offering microcredit and mobile point of sale to micro-entrepreneurs in over 1,100 Brazilian cities. Vox and Fiinlab invested R$38m in 2017.

> The GIIN’s latest report, Financing the Sustainable Development Goals: Impact Investing in Action, reiterates the need for impact investors to raise and direct new capital to help meet the SDGs by 2030 and showcases how select impact investors are taking action.

> Echoing Green hosts the All Fellows Conference in Medellin, Oct 15-19. Social/impact entrepreneurs are encouraged to register here to join.

> Save the date for the GIIN Investor Forum, October 30-31 in Paris France.

> Save the date for FLII Central America and the Caribbean on November 7-8 in Guatemala.



> Kroton inaugurated an edtech workspace at Cubo, a not-for-profit co-working venture between Redpoint eventures and Itaú. Cubo’s new location in São Paulo has over 1,200 residents. 

> Google is investing US$140m to expand its data center in Chile, which runs 100% on solar power from the Atacama region.

> Facebook is building an under-ocean cable to boost internet speeds in Argentina.

> Apple is investing in protecting mangrove forests in Colombia.



> Bloomberg says Cabify is looking to raise US$300m. Parent company Max Mobility raised a US$160m Series E earlier this year from Rakuten Capital, TheVentureCity, Endeavor Catalyst, GAT Investments, Liil Ventures, WTI, and others, at a reported US$1.4b valuation.

> Brazilian parcel logistics startup Mandaê launched a shipment tracking product called Rastreaê that has reduced tracking-related support tickets by over 20%.

> Six startups from Latin America participated in Y Combinator’s most recent Demo Day: 

Mexico: Grin (e-scooter rideshare), Higia (cancer detection), SkyDrop (ecommerce logistics)
Colombia: UBits (professional edtech)
Chile: Fintual (robo-advisor)
Puerto Rico: BrainHi (medtech AI)

> Six startups join BTG Pactual’s second boostLAB accelerator cohort: BxBlue, Digesto, Ewally, Nexoos, Omie, Virtus. BxBlue is using Banco do Brasil’s new credit API.

> WeWork has distributed R$2.5m to Latin American startups via the WeWork Creator Awards, including Malalai, OrienteMe, Raízs, and Someone Somewhere.

> Two non-profit apps, Fogo Cruzado and Onde Tem Tiroteio, have launched in Rio de Janeiro to help people get around the city safely by crowdsourcing real-time information about shootings.

> Check out LAVCA’s list of 256 Latin American startups with at least US$1m in VC funding, verified by LAVCA. Sort by geo, sector, and stage of investment. 



> iupana reports Brazilian banks could lose their large share of the market for credit card receivables lending under a planned rule change by Brazil’s Central Bank which wants banks and other card issuers to facilitate small businesses borrowing against their receivables.


> LAVCA President Cate Ambrose is moderating a discussion on investment opportunities in Latin America with Qualcomm Ventures, Angel Ventures Mexico, Innova Capital Fund, and Clip at the IFC 4th Annual Emerging Markets Venture Forum on October 4th. 

> Finnosummit Miami is Oct. 4-5. LAVCA members and network have access to a 20% discount using code LAVCA20.

> SAVE THE DATE for Scotiabank’s first LatAm Ecommerce and Technology Forum on November 6 in Mexico City to connect its investment clients with leading FOs, VCs and startups in Mexico and across the region. Email Marcela Villarreal ( to request an invitation. 

> SAVE THE DATE for WeXchange, a forum to connect high-growth entrepreneurs with mentors and investors, November 6-7 in Lima, Peru.

> 🚩 LAVCA is seeking nominations of female partners, associates, principals, and angels actively investing in Latin American startups for our Top Women Investors list. Know someone who qualifies? FILL OUT this very short form.

> Civic tech accelerator BrazilLAB is accepting applications from startups targeting public sector innovation in public security, cybersecurity, health, social inclusion, environment and other sectors.

> Jéssica Silva Rios was promoted to Partner and Head of Social Impact Measurement at Vox Capital.  



🎤 LAVCA sat down with with Cumplo co-founder Guillermo Acuña in Mexico City to talk about the crowdlending platform’s traction in Chile and expansion into Mexico.

(Co-founders Maria Jose, Mariana Castillo, Eduardo Paulsen)

Cumplo is a Chilean crowdlending platform founded by Nicolas Shea and Guillermo Acuña to provide credit for pymes. ALLVP led an undisclosed round of investment this year, with the participation of Ripple Labs founder and angel investor Chris Larsen.

Small businesses have raised over US$400m on the platform since it launched in Chile in 2012, and are currently raising about US$20m per month in collaborative funding.

Acuña says the financing/lending market for small businesses in Latin America is a US$1t annual market (US$25b in Chile); Cumplo, by comparison, captured US$100m of that amount in 2017. In Mexico, the opportunity is in the large informal lending market. Acuña says he even sees opportunity in the US, noting that the average APR via Cabbage, a referential platform that’s facilitated over US$4b in loans to small businesses, is more than Cumplo charges.

Cumplo is a B Corp, focused on bringing transparency to credit for small businesses. Acuña explains that anyone can invest, or lend money, using Cumplo; the lender profile includes institutional funds, investors diversifying their portfolios, and millennials exploring crowdfunding as an investment platform.


> Flavio Zaclis of Barn Investimentos tells Valor that the Brazilian tech opportunity is about solving structural problems, not “changing the world”:

Lá fora existe essa noção de se buscar uma empresa nascente que vai mudar tudo, mas o Brasil é um poço de ineficiências e, por isso, existe um grande mercado para startups que resolvam problemas estruturais.

> Silicon Valley investors invested half their capital in startups outside the Bay Area in 2013; now, it’s closer to two-thirds, according to The Economist.



> Reuters says Venezuela’s new cryptocurrency is nowhere to be found. Jalak Jobanputra of Future\Perfect Ventures says Venezuelans prefer Bitcoins.


The LatAm Venture Bulletin is the VC/tech newsletter and content platform of the Latin American Private Capital Association.

Have news we should include? Please email

Cvent - Web-based Software Solutions