LatAm Venture Bulletin
LatAm Venture Bulletin October 28, 2020

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LatAm Venture Bulletin

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> ♀️ LAVCA is calling for nominations for its lists of Top Women Investors and Emerging Women Investors in Latin America.

ACCESS the form to nominate senior, mid, and junior-level female investment professionals on your radar committing capital to a PE, Real Assets, or VC fund, or deploying capital from a fund, and women angel investors committing over US$50k to LatAm tech startups. 

PARTICIPATE: Investors supporting gender diversity in the region, as well as female founders in STEM are invited to register for WeXchange 2020, taking place Nov. 11. Details here.




> LAVCA, SVB, and Atlantico Partners invite you to a discussion of the technology transformation that has taken over Latin America in recent years on October 29 at 5pm ET / 2pm PT

This webinar will begin with highlights and key findings of Atlantico's 200-page Digital Transformation Report, including recent investment and performance trends from the region.

The second half of the program will feature a panel discussion and Q&A with Julia Figueiredo (Director for LatAm at SVB), Julie Ruvolo (Managing Director of Venture Capital at EMPEA & LAVCA), and Julio Vasconcellos (Managing Partner of Atlantico, a new fund from Brazilian VC Canary).




#DEBT #PROPTECH Andreessen Horowitz led a US$48m Series A in Casai, a Mexico-based developer of boutique travel apartments, with participation from Andreessen Horowitz’s Cultural Leadership Fund, KaszeK Ventures, monashees, Global Founders Capital, Liquid 2 Ventures, and founders of Nova, Credit, Loft, Kavak, and Runa.

  • The round included US$25m in venture debt from TriplePoint Capital, in addition to US$23m in equity financing committed by the above investors.
  • KaszeK Ventures and monashees invested US$5m previously.
  • Co-Founder & CEO Nico Barawid: "With remote work trending, we’ll see more travelers with a higher standard of expectations when it comes to contact-free experiences, tech-savvy apartments, and smart home devices. We plan to keep growing within Mexico, exploring beach cities like Tulum and Puerto Vallarta, with our sights set on Brazil next.”

#HEALTHTECH Valor Capital and monashees led a R$86m Series A in Sami, a Brazilian healthcare plan management platform for SMEs, with follow-on from Redpoint eventures.

  • Redpoint eventures and Canary led a US$1.3m seed round in 2019; Paulo Veras (99) and Allan Warren (Oscar Health) are previous investors in the company.
  • Sami announced it will launch its own healthcare plan, while still providing management services for other healthcare providers.
  • Co-Founder and President Vitor Asseituno: “Today we find a market of difficult and bureaucratic hiring that offers expensive plans without quality, valuing more the quantity of procedures than the orientation and coordinated health care. Service providers usually only see a piece of the patient journey if they don't have help or information from a system. We want to keep helping companies to expand this knowledge and escope, but as a health insurance company, we believe we can provide more value faster.”

Prosus Ventures (formerly Naspers Ventures) and IFC led a US$15m Series A in Klar, a Mexican personal finance management and lending platform, with follow-on from Quona Capital, Mouro Capital (formerly Santander Innoventures), and FJ Labs.

  • Quona Capital led a US$7.5m seed round in 2019, with Arc Labs providing an additional US$50m in debt financing.
  • CEO Stefan Möller on Klar’s near-term goals: “We are exclusively focused on expanding our services within Mexico before thinking about international expansion.”

#INSURTECH monashees led a US$14.5m in Pier, a Brazilian insurtech for smartphones and vehicles, with participation from Canary, Mercado Libre’s MELI Fund, and BTG Pactual’s innovation hub BoostLAB.

  • Pier raised US$7.6m in 2019 from undisclosed investors, according to Exame.

#CVC KaszeK Ventures, monashees, and WIND Ventures, the CVC fund of Chilean energy company Copec, led a US$12m Series A in Chiper, a Colombian supplier management platform for independent merchants.

  • Chiper raised US$13m from friends and family prior to this round, according to Co-Founder and CEO José Jaír Bonilla.

> #CRYPTO Alameda Ventures, the VC fund of US-based trading firm Alameda Research, invested R$40m in Transfero Swiss, a Switzerland and Brazil-based digital assets and cryptocurrency investment platform.

#CVC Bradesco’s Inovabra Ventures led a R$37m round in Asaas, a Brazilian financial management platform for microentrepreneurs and SMEs, with follow-on from Parallax Ventures.

  • Cventures invested R$2m in 2015 and R$2.5m in 2017.

> #IMPACT Vox Capital led a R$23m round in Celcoin, a Brazilian payment infrastructure developer for microentrepreneurs and fintechs targeting the underbanked, with participation from BTG Pactual’s innovation hub BoostLAB.

  • Vox Capital invested R$6m in 2019.
  • Celcoin was featured in LAVCA’s 2020 Startup Directory, among 125 Latin American startups that raised US$1m+ in VC funding in 2019. 

> #IMPACT Oikocredit invested an additional ~US$4m in a Series B in BizCapital, a Brazilian lending fintech providing credit for SMEs, bringing the total round to ~US$16m.

  • German bank KfW Group’s subsidiary DEG led the US$12m Series B in June 2020.
  • Quona Capital, monashees, and Chromo Invest made a R$15m investment in January 2018 and a R$20m investment in October 2018.

> KaszeK Ventures led a US$2.1m round in ChatPay, a Brazilian platform for online fitness and executive coaches that runs on WhatsApp and Telegram.

> alpha4 Ventures, Amador Holdings, Polymath Ventures, and Meesho invested US$2m in Elenas, a Colombian ecommerce platform enabling women to launch online businesses on Facebook and WhatsApp.

> DOMO Invest invested R$4m in Even3, a Brazilian platform for hosting science and technology-focused events online.

> Invest Tech, KPTL, Garan Ventures, and GVAngels led a R$4m round in Configr, a Brazilian cloud and website management platform for SMEs.

> Pagolivre, a Brazilian payment infrastructure provider for SMEs, invested R$3m in Joinkey, a Brazilian receivables management platform.

> #HEALTHTECH MedPass, a Brazilian employee healthcare management platform for SMEs, raised US$6m from undisclosed investors.

  • MedPass raised US$1.5m in 2016 from Brazilian private equity firm OSF Merchant Banking.

> #MINING KPTL and Wayra made an undisclosed investment in ATIVA Soluções, a Brazilian IoT and remote connectivity system for mining infrastructure.

#CVC Platanus Ventures, the CVC arm of Chilean software development agency Platanus, led a US$160k round in Reversso, a Chilean ecommerce management platform for large retailers.

> #HEALTTECH Ness Health, a spin-off of Brazilian medical equipment manufacturer Ness Processos e Tecnologia, invested R$2m in Iara Health, a Brazilian voice recognition system for medical report transcription.

> #LOGISTICS Parnity, a Brazilian platform for independent freight forwarders, raised US$250k from undisclosed investors.

> #CROWDFUNDING Grana Capital, a Brazilian tax automation platform for retail traders, raised R$700k in equity crowdfunding.



GVAngels led a R$1m round in Diário Escola, a Brazilian communication and student monitoring platform for schools.

> #CROWDFUNDING GVAngels also led a R$1m round in Amyi, a Brazilian perfumery startup, with participation from Wishe Women Capital, a Brazilian equity crowdfunding platform for women-led businesses.

> Urca Angels, a Brazilian angel network formed by alumni of Instituto Militar de Engenharia, invested R$1.4m in Bitfy, a Brazilian fintech providing digital wallet services.

> Angels Gustavo Roxo (BTG Pactual), Paula Nader (Santander), Luis Hartman (BeiT Recruitment), and Marcos Angelini (RedBull Latin America) invested R$3m in YVY, a Brazilian DTC subscription service for eco-friendly cleaning products.

> Vivant, a Brazilian manufacturer of canned wine, raised a R$5m Series A from angels including Luiz Fernando Nogueira (Brookfield Energia) and Nelson Teich (Ministério da Saúde). 



> MAYA Capital reached a US$15m second close for a total of US$40m for a vehicle to invest in early stage startups in Latin America.



> SoftBank exited iClinic, a Brazilian healthtech platform providing electronic health records, marketing, and billing services to independent medical practices, through a R$182.7m sale to Afya Limited, a Brazilian medical education group listed on the Nasdaq.

  • SoftBank made an undisclosed Series B investment in iClinic in July 2020.
  • Afya Limited also acquired PEBMED, a Brazilian clinical diagnostics software platform for medical practitioners and students, in July 2020.

> ACE Startups, Distrito Ventures, and Bossa Nova Investimentos exited easyQasa, a Brazilian facilities cleaning management platform for SMEs, through an undisclosed sale to Group Limpeza com Zelo, a Brazilian franchise group for cleaning products and services.




                             CREATORS' CMO Nohoa Arcanjo and CEO Rodrigo Allgayer

Google for Startups Brasil launched 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.

CREATORS, a Brazilian on-demand marketplace for creative services, was one of the first companies selected to participate as part of the program. CREATORS is founded by Nohoa Arcanjo, former Communications Coordinator at Pandora and Coca Cola Clothing, and Rodrigo Allgayer, former Art and Creative Director for companies such as Fiat, McDonald’s, Unilever, Ambev, Pepsico, and RedBull, and was bootstrapped until receiving the new funding from Google.

LAVCA interviewed Co-Founder and CMO Nohoa Arcanjo to better understand the platform’s history and its own commitment to diversity within the industry.

LAVCA: Why did you launch CREATORS in 2017, and what problem is the platform trying to solve?

Nohoa Arcanjo: The idea came from Rodrigo Allgayer, our founder, who, after working for national and multinational advertising agencies, tried to work more independently and lead projects where he hired other freelancers. Realizing that the market had a lot of quality professionals and a lot of projects on-demand, he decided to invest in the idea of a network that connects both sides in a trusted and agile way.

During my previous experience at Pandora, I also detected these noises when I used to request services on demand, so in 2019, I decided to co-found CREATORS, with the mission to transform the on-demand talent hiring model in the creative space. In less than 24 hours, CREATORS matches talent with creative opportunities. We bring together qualified creatives and renowned companies on a single platform.

Finding and hiring freelancers can be a long and exhausting task. CREATORS streamlines this process and facilitates the comparison between profiles, in addition to taking care of contract editing, payment scheduling and email exchanges.

How have you financed your operations, and are you looking to raise capital in the coming year?

CREATORS was initially funded with US$10k out of pocket from the company’s founders. Two years later, we received our first angel investment, which helped us further improve our product offering.

We are currently fundraising and are thrilled to have Google for Startups as our first investor. With this new capital, we intend to better structure our sales processes and pipeline in order to expand our commercial reach and offer even more robust resources on the platform to continue with our mission of serving large companies and creators.

READ more about CREATORS’ challenges and approach to diversity within their platform.



> Santiago Sosa, CEO of Tiendanube/Nuvemshop, an Argentine ecommerce platform with operations in Brazil and Mexico, talks about building a merchant-first ecommerce model: “The ecommerce landscape has evolved much in the marketplace space, particularly in Brazil, but marketplaces are 'buyer first businesses'. Everything they do is about trying to control and intermediate the relationship between buyers and sellers, imposing rules that usually improves buyers' lives while putting pressure on merchants. Our approach is different: our model is merchant first, we give merchants technology and education, and we facilitate the development of their businesses, so then the market can come in at a second stage and regulate.”

  • Tiendanube recently raised a US$30m Series C led by KaszeK Ventures and Qualcomm Ventures.
  • Tiendanube has more than 65k merchants, transacting over US$1b in annual Gross Market Value (GMV), and growing at triple digits, according to Sosa.

> Rappi announced all of its corporate employees will be permanently working remotely.

  • Rappi is not the only company in the region instituting these policies: Edtech startup Platzi also announced its intention to become a remote-first company, following the steps of tech giants such as Twitter and Microsoft.

> Peruvian urban delivery platform Chazki partnered with retailer Falabella to optimize its delivery operations and reduce delivery times.

  • Chazki acquired Chilean last-mile delivery startup TodoVa in May 2020.

> Satellogic announced its participation in the newly formed Global Consortium of Geospatial Imagery, an initiative with European Space Imaging, Eartheye, and Brazil and Colombia-based 5C1 to increase the efficiency of information flow from geospatial stations to governments and business leaders in Europe, Asia Pacific, and Latin America.

> MAT, a ride-hailing platform that allows drivers to become shareholders in the company, launched operations in Colombia.

> #C19 Sabrina Sepúlveda, a Chilean nanotechnology researcher, launched eHealth Care, a mobile application that leverages smartphone sensors to perform rapid C19 tests and rule out potential infections without requiring patients to visit the hospital.

> 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.




> READ the latest in a series of deal cases featuring LAVCA member investor Oria Capital's investment in Brazilian software/CPaaS company Zenvia.

The case study includes the transaction details, sector and consolidation opportunities, deal execution, and ESG considerations, as well as COVID-19 efforts from the last several months.

Oria assisted in the creation of a dedicated M&A team, resulting in the acquisition of four companies over a two-year period. In July 2020, Zenvia announced the acquisition of Sirena, a WhatsApp communication solutions platform based in Argentina and with presence in Mexico and the US. WhatsApp’s penetration in the region stood at 64% in 2018, so the acquisition of Sirena is set to further strengthen Zenvia’s product portfolio and international reach. In Mexico alone, 77 million people—more than half of the country’s 126 million people—are active monthly users of WhatsApp.

DOWNLOAD the full deal case here.



> SIGN UP for a bi-weekly newsletter covering cross-border tech transactions and innovations with cross-border applications in a rapidly changing world. Geographies will include Latin America, Africa, India, Southeast Asia, the Middle East, and other emerging VC markets. 

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> #POLICY PIX, Brazil’s instant payment system supported by Banco Central will officially launch on November 16 at 6:30am BRT.

  • PIX will be available to 688 institutions that have been pre-approved by Banco Central to test connectivity, registration and settlement operations.
  • João Manoel Pinho de Mello, Banco Central’s Financial System Director, hinted at current efforts to adapt PIX for international use cases by 2022.

> Uber Eats announced it will exit Argentina and Colombia by the end of November, after ceasing operations in Uruguay and Honduras in May of this year. 

> Users can now request a ride on the Didi-owned 99 platform through WhatsApp, without having the ride-hailing app installed on their phones. 

> Amazon announced a US$100m investment to open two additional fulfilment and distribution centers in Mexico.

 Facebook partnered with the Mexican Entrepreneurs Association (ASEM) and with Endeavor Colombia to launch a digital training and education initiative for SMEs to enable local business owners to get online and adapt to the current C19 landscape.

> Mercado Libre launched “Pongamos la economía en marcha”, a campaign native to their platform showcasing the impact of online purchases in the local economies across Latin America.

> PECAP partnered with Amazon Web Services to issue a report on the effect of C19 on the venture capital and entrepreneurial ecosystem in Peru.

> Reuters profiles Mercado Pago in Latin American payment giant rises amid pandemic, with an eye on China’s Ant.

> TechCrunch: Brazil’s Black Silicon Valley could be an epicenter of innovation in Latin America.

> Quartz reviews strategies from the Colombian and Chilean government to navigate the current C19 crisis in What developing countries can teach rich countries about how to respond to a pandemic.

> Americas Quarterly: The “Laboratory” Closing Latin America’s Tech Gender Divide.



> ♀️ Susana García-Robles, Executive Advisor at LAVCA and Partner at Capria, was featured in Americas Quarterly as  a "Top 5 Champions of Gender Equality" in the LatAm VC investment ecosystem.

> Ramiro Lauzan of L Catterton shares his view on the current investment landscape in the region and L Catterton’s experience participating in NotCo’s latest US$85m round.

 Greg Mitchell of Angel Ventures Peru examines how Latin American startups have repositioned their value proposition amid the current C19 crisis.

Ilse Calderón of US-based OVO Fund shares her view on the importance of targeting the Latinx demographic to successfully reach scale for software-centric businesses.


> Congratulations to the Latin American startups selected for the 2020 Inclusive Tech 50 cohort: Aflore, Akiba, Alfi, Bamba, Coink, Grupo R5, Siembro, and TiendaPago.

> Former Folhamatic Founder and CEO of Qyon Tecnologia Mauricio Frizzarin launched Qyon Engine, a R$10m Brazilian accelerator to invest in 20 companies during the next two years in the country. Information and additional resources can be found here.

> TOMORROW: LatAm Leaders in Investment, a global virtual summit in support of UNICEF and ALPINE Capital Advisors, will take place Oct 29-30. Details here

> Wayra Hispam will host an initiative to bring visibility to regional startups currently in the process of fundraising and foster connections between local fund managers on October 29. Investors can register here.

> Globant opened nominations for the Globant Awards, an award recognizing women leaders in the technology ecosystem. Categories include: Technology Executive, Game Changer, and Rising Star. Nominations can be submitted until November 4.

> ColCapital and Universidad EAFIT will host an educational program focused on the private capital markets from November 5 to February 10. Registration is now open.

 REGISTER for WeXchange 2020, hosted by IDB Lab on November 10-11. Details here.

 LAVCA CEO Ivonne Cuello will participate in the FT Global Boardroom Virtual Summit alongside Mercado Libre Founder Marcos Galperin in the panel "LatAm Tech in the Spotlight: Opportunities for Growth, Leapfrogging and Social Impact" on November 11-13. Register for free here.

> ACVC, ARCAP, and Uruguayan Promoción de Exportaciones e Inversiones (Uruguay XXI) will host the first Southern Cone Investment Forum on November 25 and 26.


The LatAm Venture Bulletin is the VC/tech newsletter and content platform of
The Association for Private Capital Investment in Latin America.

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