LatAm Venture Bulletin - July 6, 2016

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LatAm Venture Bulletin


Oi, the leading Brazilian fixed-line phone carrier, has filed for Brazil’s largest ever bankruptcy protection. Reuters cites “Oi’s struggle with mounting competition in mobile and data, spiraling debt, and its burden of mandatory fixed-line expansion goals after its state-sponsored merger eight years ago.”

Brazilian courts have found a new way to hold WhatsApp hostage, blocking over US$6m of Facebook’s money last week. It’s the latest move in an ongoing drug case to force WhatsApp to release data they maintain they do not have access to—court-ordered service blackouts held nearly 100M Brazilian users hostage in December and May.

> Hacker collective Anonymous is holding Brazil's National Telecommunications Agency, Anatel hostage with ransomware until they promise unlimited fixed line bandwidth.



> Naspers Ventures made a US$40m Series F investment in Movile, with participation from Innova Capital. Movile is in turn investing US$3m in Sympla, a Brazilian ticketing and event management platform.

Península Participações acquired a minority stake in, a wine retailer controlled by e.Bricks Digital. Abilio Diniz was named as a new partner in the firm.

> BNDES invested R$1.5m in Brazilian digital game maker Aquiris Games Studio.



Vinci Partners is targeting US$100m in commitments for its debut VC fund, which will make both direct and indirect investments in technology startups in the US, Europe, Israel, and Brazil.

Monsanto invested in BR Startups, a R$300m fund for Brazilian agtech startups launched by Microsoft Participações in 2012 in collaboration with Qualcomm Ventures, ES Ventures (Portugal) and AgeRio (Agência de Fomento do Estado do Rio de Janeiro). The fund is managed by Moises Swirski at MSW Capital; Acelera Partners will help select new investments.



> BR Startups is accepting applications for new agtech investments. Agtech startups with R$300k-R$10m in annual revenue can apply for funding by August 7.

Qualcomm Ventures has partnered with KaszeK Ventures to host QPrize Latin America 2016, an early stage startup competition for US$350k in convertible note funding. Early stage startups based in LatAm with less than US$2m in funding can apply here by July 10. 

> Bloomberg Philanthropies is handing out US$9m in funding to LatAm startups improving city life. Check out the 20 finalists, from Ecuador to Chile.

> The Stanford Latino Entrepreneur Leaders Program is looking for mentors and capital advisors with experience in starting, growing, or running a company, or experts in team operations and growth who are passionate about helping entrepreneurs grow. If you are interested in becoming a Mentor or Capital Advisor, please contact Tiq Chapa at for more information.

Real estate marketplace VivaReal has named Lucas Vargas as CEO. Founder Brian Requarth remains on board as Executive Chairman. VivaReal has raised over US$70m to date from KaszeK Ventures, Monashees, 500 Startups, Spark Capital, and others. 



Anjos do Brasil has launched a Guide to Angel Investing and Legal Documents for Brazilian startups. With collaboration from Intel Capital, Baptista Luz, Derraik & Menezes, Neolaw, and FGV-direito, the guide is designed to serve as a reference for contract best practices and is free to access.



Estaban Mancuso of Velum Ventures presents a deep dive into challenges of running an early-stage VC fund in Colombia, and invites a discussion on proposed next steps, including a law of "Capital Emprendedor" to regulate early-stage funds, a government fund-matching mechanism, and fiscal incentives for LPs. 

Romero Rodrigues of Redpoint eventures walks through mobile e-commerce in Brazil and points to opportunities to gain efficiencies in last-mile logistics and on-demand delivery, in a guest post for TechCrunch.


The LatAm Venture Bulletin is a news platform of the Latin American Private Equity and Venture Capital Association.

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