Two years after the launch of the Latin America Fund I, Softbank Group Corp. has announced $3 billion more for the Latin America Fund II. This adds up to a total of $8 billion that the Japanese investing conglomerate has committed to the region.
Since the creation of the LatAm Fund I in 2019, Softbank has invested in 37 companies across different industries, including fintech, e-commerce, and blockchain.
Of those companies, 15 are now unicorns, including MadeiraMadeira, Gympass, Kavak, and Bitso.
One of the largest investment rounds from the LatAm Fund I was for Colombian delivery startup Rappi. It received $1 billion in April 2019. The latest company receiving funding was Gaia, a Mexican online furniture platform. It announced $50 million in a Series C financing round in early September.
Marcelo Claure, Corporate Officer, Executive Vice President & COO of Softbank, stated on his Twitter account that his “bet of $8 billion dollars towards Latin America is nothing but a vote of confidence on the great entrepreneurs and visionaries that already exists in our Latin countries.”
Softbank’s involvement in the region comes at an inflection point. There are currently over 70 companies that are valued at over $100 million, according to ALLVP Research.
VCs have invested $8.8 billion across nearly 400 deals in the region so far in 2021, per PitchBook data. That’s more capital than was committed in total between 2012 to 2018.