Contxto – To boost Chile’s venture capital activity, Wayra Chile recently went to work and organized the nation’s first Co-Investment Day.
Eight startups and seven venture capital funds recently convened at the event’s first edition in Santiago. Its main goal was to strengthen and promote investment collaborations between local funds and companies.
For this reason, Wayra Chile, Génesis Ventures, Manutara Ventures, Chile Global Ventures, Dadneo, Chile Ventures and Beagle Ventures attended. Together, they analyzed a batch of eight promising startups in hopes of stoking collaboration.
For some startups, this was a rare opportunity to attract investments in Chile, which is still known for its fledgling VC industry.
“The possibility of joining two or more funds that invest in a startup is a powerful signal for entrepreneurs,” said Claudio Barahona, manager of Open Innovation of Movistar Chile and leader of Wayra.
“Not only because of the money committed but also because, little by little, we are building the Venture Capital industry that our startups (need) to scale their businesses.”
Eight participants sought to raise US$500 thousand funding rounds to scale operations. These included Easycancha, Izit, Boosmap, Soleit, Roombeast, Funx, Geti and Cosmic Go.
Efforts went into evaluating mature and growth-stage startups venturing into the IoT, Big Data, AI, cybersecurity and video industries. Certain VC officials felt a moral obligation to support these companies grow.
“This is collaboration and co-investment of truth,” said Felipe Matta of Chile Ventures. “At the end of the day, (there was) a lot of talk about the collaboration between the funds, but this really is what we have to do.”
During the event, founders pitched to venture capitalists about their startups for up to 25 minutes. Eventually, entrepreneurs also got the opportunity to rock investors’ world during the Q&A session. Participants were optimistic and hopeful for the future.
“I thought this was an excellent opportunity for entrepreneurs to present their companies in front of important Venture Capital,” said Francisco Contreras, Co-founder and Commercial Director of Geti. “The idea is that after this new meeting, requests can be generated with the interested funds.”
Here’s a few description of the chosen startups:
If you’re a sports club owner, you have most likely experienced inefficiencies of managing your facilities and courts, especially when it comes to scheduling.
You’re most likely not a sports club owner. Luckily for athletes and sports aficionados, too, Easycancha also helps them with booking space and managing their calendar in a more practical and efficient way.
Combining loyalty programs, gamification and geo-location, Izit makes living (and purchasing) as fun as playing a Pokemon Go. Digitally savvy, it tailors and customizes brands’ advertising campaigns.
To help partners attract new consumers, millennials specifically, Izit creates content relevant to the location. Users can also interact with the app, collect virtual tokens and redeem them for brand promotions.
Boosmap is a delivery company focusing on the company side of the spectrum. It outsources a partners’ delivery fleets and makes sure products reach clients easily and securely.
People can also apply to work as “Boosters” with the startup. Boosmap’s services are currently only available in the regions of Santiago, Valparaiso, as well as Coquimbo.
Soleit designs personalized orthopedic insoles via artificial intelligence. Specifically, it uses a foot scanner to analyze, process and design the product and voilà! You have a one-of-a-kind insole.
Advanced algorithms ensure high-quality precision, getting everything down to the very millimeter correct. The startup mostly works mostly with traumatologists, athletes and kinesiologists with feet matters.
This startup understands the complexities surrounding inventory distribution among hotels and wholesalers in Latin America. That’s why Roombeast has created a platform to ease the process for industry players.
Collaborating with hotels and wholesale buyers as well as sellers, the company allows closed B2B exchanges to be made at some of the most economic rates on the market.
According to Funx’s website, it is the only mobile technology platform developing end-to-end customer-user experiences. What this means is that it generates and gauges engagement.
Some of this startup’s participatory tools measure interaction, fan experience, data, and direct to fan engagement. All of this is measured in real-time.
Clients can maximize profitability and make better business decisions with Geti’s intelligent e-commerce platform. This startup specifically aids partners in monitoring prices, stocks, in addition to competitors’ promotions.
To do this, Geti performs comparative analysis in real-time. Some of the benefits include tracking competitors, making better decisions, decreasing sales losses, not to mention optimizing profits.
Shared mobility is what Cosmic Go is all about. The sole Colombian startup offers services to both operators as well as riders for more profitable and safer experiences.
To operators, Cosmic Go has designed its own e-scooter, the Cosmic Rover designed for sharing and logistics. With this also comes software as a service, AI-powered theft prevention, plus many other features.
I believe venture capital activity is crucial and a bit scarce in Chile’s ecosystem. At least compared to other Latin American countries. National startups many times have to appeal to international funds or agents to find their much-needed capital.
According to StartupBlink’s recent report, not to mention our coverage, Chile is actually the best place for startups to launch. It’s a pretty solid tech hub. Nevertheless, when it comes to funding opportunities, there is still a lot left to be desired.
In my opinion, events like this aiming to discuss and share deal flows are important for the correct development of Chile’s entrepreneurial finance industry.