LatAm Venture Bulletin
LatAm Venture Bulletin November 25, 2020

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LatAm Venture Bulletin

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SoftBank Latin America Fund led a R$310m Series D in olist, a Brazilian ecommerce platform, with follow-on from Valor Capital, Peninsula, VELT Partners, FJ Labs, and angel investor Kevin Efrusy.

  • SoftBank led a R$190m in 2019, with follow-on from Redpoint eventures.
  • olist also announced the acquisition of Clickspace, a Brazilian SaaS for ecommerce marketplace management.
  • READ LAVCA’s interview with Founder and CEO Tiago Dalvi below.👇

#HEALTHTECH San Francisco-based VC Index Ventures led a US$19m Series A in Sofía, a Mexican digital health insurer and telemedicine platform, with participation from KaszeK Ventures and Ribbit Capital.

  • Sofía is the first Mexican digital health insurance to receive regulatory approval, according to Index Ventures.
  • Co-Founder and CEO Arturo Sanchez Correa on receiving regulatory approval from Mexican regulators: “We had to comply with the same requirements as any large 100-year-old institution, and there are no special provisions in the insurance market like the ones you can find for fintechs in Ley Fintech. The whole process took just shy of two years and required us to have a very robust team and significant capital requirements. On the flip side, now that we are a fully authorised insurance company and can operate without having to partner with an incumbent, we can move as fast as we want (and we intend to move very fast).”

Tribe Capital led a US$13.5m Series A in Mati, a Mexico-based identity verification technology provider, with follow-on from Spero Ventures, Amaranthine, Operator Partners, Aglae Ventures, and Comma VC.

  • In May 2020, Mati raised an undisclosed round from Spero Ventures, which spun out from Omidyar Network in 2019 with US$100m AUM.

monashees, ONEVC, and Y Combinator led a US$5m seed round in Facio, a Brazilian financial education and payroll advance platform, with participation from angels Gabriel Braga (QuintoAndar), Michael Seibel (Y Combinator), and Igor Marchesini (SumUp).

  • Facio recently launched a lending platform for employees to refinance debt obligations at cheaper rates.

> monashees and Qualcomm Ventures led an undisclosed Series A in Azion, a Brazilian developer of edge computing software applications. 

> Google for Startups Brasil selected six new companies to join its Black Founders Fund: Aoca Game Lab, a gaming company, LegAut, an aggregator of public residential real estate documentation, EasyJur, a software development platform for law firms, WeUse, an on-demand clothing rental service, Treinus, a sports training platform, and Wellbe, a platform for employee health data management.

  • Google for Startups launched the Brazilian Black Founders Fund in September, a R$5m investment fund to finance 30 early stage startups founded and run by afro-descendente entrepreneurs in Brazil. This follows a similar US$5m allocation for Black American founders.
  • Previous companies selected to participate include Afropolitan, a Brazilian ecommerce focused on trending products from afro-descendente culture, TrazFavela, a last-mile delivery platform for underserved communities in city peripheries, and CREATORS, a Brazilian on-demand marketplace for creative services. READ LAVCA’s interview with CREATOR’s CMO Nohoa Arcanjo.

> #MINING Brazilian venture builder Happy Capital led a R$3m round in Minery, a Brazilian B2B commodity marketplace connecting small mining companies to potential ore buyers.

> Michel Klein’s family office, which owns a controlling stake in Brazilian retail company Via Varejo, made an undisclosed investment in Pet Anjo, a Brazilian marketplace for pet goods and services.

> #CROWDFUNDING Flapper, a Brazilian on-demand aviation services provider, raised US$2.5m in equity crowdfunding through SMU Crowdfunding.

> #AGTECH The Yield Lab LatAm invested US$100k each in Botanical Solutions, a Chilean plant-based products manufacturer for crop pest control, @Tech, a Brazilian agtech monitoring platform for livestock feedlots, and VOA, a Brazilian air drone manufacturer for pesticide and nutrient crop application.

> #ANGEL GVAngels invested R$1.5m in DeÔnibus, a Brazilian bus ticketing platform.

> #HEALTHTECH #ANGEL TissueLabs, a Brazilian manufacturer of equipment for human organ and tissue development, raised R$1.5m from economist Eduardo Zylberstajn and others.

> GlooPay, a Brazilian payments startup focused on the underbanked, raised an undisclosed amount from unnamed investors.

  • GlooPay raised R$1.2m from North Star and Axen Capital in 2019.



> #CVC Meta, a Brazilian enterprise software developer, launched Meta Ventures, a R$20m CVC fund to invest in early stage startups in Brazil.

  • The fund will focus on SaaS companies and will provide up to R$1.5m in funding to selected startups.

> Brazilian fashion holding Arezzo & Co launched ZZ Ventures, a new fund to invest in accessory and retail brands in Brazil off their balance sheet.

  • ZZ Ventures recently acquired a 75% stake of Troc, a Brazilian on-demand digital store for second hand apparel.




                                                     olist's Founder and CEO Tiago Dalvi

olist, a Brazilian ecommerce platform for small retailers, recently raised a R$310m Series D led by SoftBank’s Latin America Fund, with follow-on from Valor Capital, Peninsula, VELT Partners, FJ Labs, and angel Kevin Efrusy. SoftBank led a R$190m round in 2019. Along with the financing announcement, olist confirmed the acquisition of Clickspace, a Brazilian ecommerce platform for small retailers to launch their own marketplaces.

olist, with over 90,000 clients in more than 165 countries, is capitalizing on the acceleration of ecommerce adoption caused by C19. LAVCA interviewed olist Founder and CEO Tiago Dalvi on the current state of local ecommerce and the opportunity for retailers in the space to further integrate fintech and logistics services into their value chain.

LAVCA: What is the origin story behind launching olist in 2014?

Tiago Dalvi: I started my entrepreneurial journey very early by managing a small brick-and-mortar retail store. During my time there, the first thing I realized was how hard it was to drive traffic to my shop. Demand generation wasn't something trivial, and most people were already used to shopping in large retailers like Walmart. With that in mind, I figured that the solution to my problems would be to have a physical space inside one of these high-traffic shopping centers.

After launching Solidarium, an online crafts marketplace, I realized that the issue wasn't creating a two-way marketplace or attempting to have the greatest variety of products available, but to generate the right exposure for the products already on the platform. That's when we pivoted and launched olist.

At that point, it became very clear that connecting a merchant to high-demand liquidity sources was only step one. The second step was making sure we had the highest exposure within these marketplaces. The third step was simplifying the very complex process for merchants to have access to our services with the push of a button, regardless of their size.

At that time, most merchants didn't know how to succeed online, nor did they know how to expand their businesses digitally. olist became the easiest and most effective way to grow their sales, and that put us on the map.

READ the full interview with Tiago Dalvi, including how he thinks about integrating fintech and logistics into olist’s offering.



> #M&A #PROPTECH QuintoAndar acquired SíndicoNet, a Brazilian real estate content and education platform focused on condominium management.

> #M&A #EXIT Ace Startups exited Real Valor, a Brazilian personal finance management platform, through a sale to Empiricus, a Brazilian personal investment education platform.

> RunaHR, a Mexican payroll automation platform, released a report analyzing the future of work in Latin America.

  • The report surveyed 365 professionals across 25 industries, including Didi, Nubank, Rappi, Conekta, and Liftit.
  • Key highlights include: Less than 5% of all companies surveyed are currently working in their office or plan to go back to their premises in the next 12 months; more than 59% of the companies have increased their benefits to employees during the pandemic; all companies implemented a new software product to cope with working from home.

> Ualá, an Argentine mobile banking app, partnered with Galileo, a US-based payment processor company focused on emerging markets, to provide real-time authorization for Ualá’s transactions in Mexico.

> Jooycar, a Chilean insurtech for real-time automotive data, expanded to the US through the launch of its subsidiary Fleetr.

> Manoela Mitchell of Pipo Saúde shared her view on the current state of the healthcare benefits landscape in Brazil and bringing David Velez (Nubank) on board as an angel investor in their last round.

  • monashees, KaszeK Ventures, and ONEVC invested US$4.6m in June 2020.

> Congratulations to Daniela Izquierdo of Colombian foodtech Foodology for winning Amazon’s Women Founders Represent Award.

> Check out LAVCA’s 2020 directory of 126 Latin American startups with at least US$1m in VC funding, verified by LAVCA (as of end-2019), our Unicorn Leaderboard, and our Inaugural Survey of Latin American Startups.



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> Mercado Libre launched MELI Air, its own aircraft fleet, to speed its logistic delivery network in Brazil.

  • Mercado Libre will also launch five new logistics hubs in the country to accommodate increased demand.

> WhatsApp will soon launch a peer-to-peer payment service in Brazil.

  • Central Bank’s President Roberto Campos Neto: “Our only concern is that we must go through all the approval criteria and that we have a system that fosters competition.”

> Banco Itaú launched vec, an electric car sharing platform. vec is expected to begin operating in São Paulo in February 2021. 

> Franciso Sagasti was elected as the new Peruvian President by Congress on Monday November 16 after interim President Manuel Merino resigned from office, and former President Martín Vizcarra was impeached and removed on accounts of corruption.

  • The current presidential term ends on July 28, 2021.

> Zelle, a US-based peer-to-peer payments application, has gained unexpected popularity in Venezuela, according to Bloomberg.

  • “It works for impulse buys, like a candy bar or a new pair of sneakers, as well as for more essential needs. 'Without Zelle, we would have fewer patients,' says Dr. Antonio Farfán, a surgeon at a private clinic in Caracas. 'I know it’s meant for occasional payments, but here it’s everything'."

> #C19 Americas Quarterly reviews how local authorities across Latin America have established partnerships and bypassed national governments in an attempt to navigate the current C19 crisis.

  • “Local governments have offered themselves a leading role in international relations… C19 is giving Latin American mayors a springboard to fast track the long-awaited transition into more compact cities, ensuring wider access to basic services like affordable housing, reliable public health, free education, and decent employment.”


> Hector Shibata of AC Ventures shares his view on the current state of the VC fundraising landscape in The Hidden Truth About Venture Capital Funds.

> Paulo Passoni of SoftBank announced the firm’s Latin American Fund is set to accelerate the deployment of the remaining US$3b in capital commitments to “take advantage of post-pandemic deal opportunities”.

  • SoftBank posted a ~US$6b net profit in Q3 and recently removed Rajeev Misra and Marcelo Claure from the board, according to the FT.

 Camila Farani of G2 Capital launched #ElaVence, a platform to foster training and networking opportunities between women entrepreneurs in Brazil.


> #WATCH #TODAY ACVC, ARCAP, and Uruguayan Promoción de Exportaciones e Inversiones host the first Southern Cone Investment Forum on November 25 and 26.

> ALLVP is looking for a Senior Investment Associate to expand its team. Candidates with expertise on the Colombian market are encouraged to apply.

> NXTP is looking for an Investment Associate to expand its team. The candidate can be based in either Mexico City, São Paulo, or Buenos Aires. Applications close November 27.

> Wayra Hispam is hosting a Corporate Venturing Summit discussion on November 26 with participation from Agustina Palmai, Corporate Development Lead at MELI Fund, Vivianne Bernardes-Cibils, Co-Founder at Cibersons, Guillermo Diaz, Head of BICE Ventures, and Felipe Ortega, Entrepreneurship Manager at Corfo. Register here.

 Canary launched Canary Takeoff, a free virtual acceleration program for early stage startups in Brazil. Applications close November 30. 

> PECAP and ESAN will host "Fundamentos de Venture Capital", an introduction to key concepts in VC contextualized to the Peruvian market, starting on December 1. Registration is now open.

> The Colombian American Association is hosting a virtual conference on December 2 and 3 to discuss the role of technology in reactivating the Colombian economy. Registration is now open.

 Congratulations to the 15 Latin American startups selected to participate in Facebook’s Commerce Accelerator:

  • Argentina: Cliengo, FullJaus
  • Brazil: Bling, Digitalk, Kyte, MarketUp, olist, OmniChat,, ShowKase,Unbox, VendaMaisM
  • Colombia:
  • Mexico: Vendora
  • Panama: Cuanto

> BayBrazil is looking for mentors to support the selection and growth of three startups focused on promoting education, health, and diversity as part of its Social Impact Initiative. Applications are now open.

> 500 Startups partnered with CEmprende, a Colombian government-led campus for startup innovation backed by INNPulsa, to launch CEmprende’s new campus in Barranquilla and strengthen the startup accelerator programs in the country.



The World Bank examines the impact of the current C19 crisis on the implementation of carbon pricing initiatives and the long-term effect on climate action.

  • “2020 marked the start of the pilot phase of Mexico’s national carbon market, representing the first emissions trading system (ETS) in Latin America.”

ProPublica: Where Will Everyone Go?

  • “ProPublica and The New York Times Magazine, with support from the Pulitzer Center, have for the first time modeled how climate refugees might move across international borders. This is what we found.”

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The Association for Private Capital Investment in Latin America.

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