I am a big believer in the capacity of the founders currently leading Peru’s startup community. I also am optimistic about the future due to the emergence of Peruvians who have earned leadership positions in top tech companies.
Daniel Barreto, may be a lesser known actor in the Lima startup community, but his impact is huge.
Daniel is CEO and co-founder of Haystack News, a U.S.-based startup that offers a better way to consume digital news content. Daniel is also a mentor at StartX, a top accelerator program in the U.S. where Haytack News is a portfolio company. Haystack is described in the App Store as “your go-to for hyper-relevant news, from local coverage to global current events. It’s the best way to watch a variety of coverage, all in one place, and absolutely free.”
The most important event for venture capital in Peru has teamed up with PECAP to put on the 2020 edition. The series will occur over a five day period in August and a diverse list of speakers has already been announced.
Startup founders are always the highlight of the event and this year Diego Olcese, Gonzalo Begazo, and Tatiana Guichard are already confirmed as speakers. More great founders are sure to particpate as well.
The organizing commitee, led by Jaime Sotomayor, has done an impressive job of organizing a full agenda that includes keynotes, panels, and workshops on a wide variety of issues.
The startup ecosystem in Peru and other smaller markets in LatAm have come a long way over the last five years. We still have a long way to go. Maintaining support of entrepreneurs in Peru and other emerging tech hubs is vital to Latin America’s future.
UTEC Ventures has set itself apart as the top startup accelerator in Peru. The program is on par with peers across Latin America and continues to attract promising startup founders from Peru and abroad. UTEC Ventures recently opened applications for its latest cohort which is aimed to support fintech and post-covid solutions.
A long, consistent, approach is paying off and the results speak for themselves.
Last year, I wrote about some of the best newsletters and websites that share information on the Peru and Latin America startup communities.
This year, more people are sharing. The new content goes beyond news. Fresh voices are both providing deeper insights into how to launch startups and building broad platforms for startups founders to share their stories.
Positive actions have been taken by traditional actors to mitigate the effects of Covid-19 in Peru. The government has taken strong steps to enforce a quarantine and implement fiscal stimulus. Many corporations are working overtime provide basic needs, including food, health and financial services.
However, opening up effectively poses an entirely different set of challenges. This is where startup founders come in. Peru’s startup founders have been thought leaders in analyzing the effects of the crisis and offering solutions.
I was recently reminded of the Stockdale Paradox, which highlights the benefits of balancing optimism with reality when faced with extreme challenges. James Stockdale was a Prisoner of War in Vietnam. He said the following:
The members of PECAP have chosen new leaders to set the course for the coming year and continue to build the venture capital asset class in Peru.
Maria Pia Morante, of Acumen LatAm Capital Partners, and Meghan Stevenson-Krausz of INCA Ventures became new members of the PECAP Board and continuity was achieved as Alain Elias, of PAD – Red de Inversionistas Ángeles , Martin Aspillaga, of Salkantay, and Jose Deutsua of UTEC Ventures will continue another year. Jose Deustua takes the helm as President, after the very successful leadership of Alain Elias that culminated in the recent publication of the 2019 Report.
Each startup in Latin America is affected by the repercussions of Covid-19 in a unique way. The impact often depends on how the startup entered the crisis and the sector in which they operate.
At the onsite of the crisis, forward-looking startup investors were quick to present action plans and decision matrices that stressed cost-cutting, hiring freezes and doing everything possible to extend runway. The Sequoia Matrix and the Kaszek Survival Guide have been great resources founders in Latin America.
The precise measures to be taken are a bit more nuanced and there is no one-size fits all aproach.
Startup founders are used to thinking big and building projections of exponential growth based on highly scalable business models. Weekly, monthly, and annual projections are the typical guideposts for determining whether execution is on plan. Unfortunately, the Covid-19 pandemic has caused projections to go out the window.
Today, some much remains uncertain that it is impossible to accurately project what will happen. Startups need a new set of guideposts to determine what is happening and make crucial decisions on what need to be done.
Last month the Peruvian Seed and Venture Capital Association, PECAP, published its Directorio de Miembros PECAP 2020. This is a great step to provide access to information on active early stage investors in Peru.