Imagine a world in which Peru startup Manzana Verde raises from FJ Labs, Fitia gets into Y Combinator, Fitco gets into Techstars, venture capital analyst Enzo Cavalie lands a job at a top US venture firm, and serial founder Amparo Nalvarte begins investing in startups. This is the world we imagined for the Peru startup community. This is the world we live in now.
The list of tangible results that Peruvian startup founders, and the Peru ecosystem, are achieving is impressive and growing longer. A dynamic combination of local funding and global disruption is democratizing capital, making it easier for startup founders to find a way to achieve regional and global success.
Después de un año y medio, hoy me despido de Innóvate Perú, programa que no solamente viene impulsando la generación de proyectos innovadores a nivel nacional, sino que una de sus mayores riquezas consiste en fortalecer, tejer e impulsar a los diferentes actores del sistema nacional de innovación en el país.
Me tocó la suerte de acompañar y dar soporte a la muy buena gestión de Rosmary Cornejo, quién acompañada de un gran equipo técnico y administrativo, cierra la exitosa etapa del programa Innóvate Perú antes de convertirse en ProInnóvate. Toda esta gestión siempre acompañada desde el 2006 de un gran socio como es el BID, el cuál desde la creación de Innóvate, crean el primer mecanismo en el Perú de asignación competitiva de recursos públicos para investigación e innovación.
The recent mega rounds in Mexico, Flink ($12 million), Justo ($65 million) and Valoreo ($50 million), occurred within a few weeks. The size of these rounds marked new highs for Seed and Series A rounds in Mexico.
Let’s face it, this is way beyond the scope of what is happening in Peru. These rounds indicate the gap between Mexico’s startup ecosystem and the rest of Spanish-speaking Latin America may be widending, not shrinking.
Startups have a lot of metrics. It is easy to get lost. The North Star Metric may be the most important, but don’t forget about active paying users, unit economics, MRR, NPS, all while you grow 10% a month.
For founders, measuring everything can be overwhelming, and makes it difficult to manage pitch meetings with potential investors. Venture capitalists want you to know your numbers, and expect you to determine which are the right ones to measure for your business model and stage of growth.
Here are some ideas for how to organize your metrics, and thought process:
Recently, IBD Lab announced its first commitment to a Peru-based venture capital fund, Salkantay Ventures. Given the IDB Lab’s history as a first mover in backing early stage funds in the region, this is a strong message of support for the Salkantay team as well as the wider Peru startup community. Peru has reached a critical mass of capabilities in both building startups and investing in them.
When you meet startup founder Tomás Vega, you won’t get too far into the conversation before he tells you that he wants to become a Cyborg!
What Tomás is doing is crazy. The good type of crazy. The break-boundaries-of-science type of crazy. The type of crazy Linda Rottenberg, founder of Endeavor, talks about in her book Crazy is a Compliment.
Marcos Brujis was a loyal Peruvian whose embrace of humanity expanded from Latin America across all emerging markets. Over his long career as an investor, he inspired billions of dollars in capital to support projects, companies, and entrepreneurs all over the world.
Marcos was born in Lima in 1952. After studying at McGill, he worked at HSBC, then joined the IFC where he spent the better part of many years traveling the world persuading asset managers to dedicate funds to Latin America and other emerging markets.
More and more startups in Peru are receiving investment from U.S. investors. Many of these startups have reached product-market fit and some have already scaled across multiple countries in Latin America.
This trend is partly due to the growing tendency for Peru startups to set up U.S.-based entities as holding companies. Founders are using Simple Agreement for Future Equity (SAFE) financing documents, the standard document for early stage U.S. startups, allowing them to raise money from a wide variety of investors.
La novela que empezó en 2017, tuvo un final feliz el pasado 2 de diciembre con la publicación del Decreto Supremo 375-2020-EF, mejor conocido como el reglamento del Fondo de Capital para Emprendimientos Innovadores (FCEI). Como toda buena historia, tuvo momentos muy gratos como la inclusión del FCEI en el Plan Nacional de Competitividad y Productividad en 2019 y la aprobación de recursos por S/ 70 millones en enero de este año a través del Decreto de Urgencia 013-2020. Pero la sazón de la historia vino por los momentos de incertidumbre. En especial, por aquella generada en el ámbito político que incluyó que Perú no tenga poder legislativo (Congreso) durante algunos meses de 2019 y 2020, el proceso de vacancia presidencial del segundo semestre 2020 y -una no política, pero no menor-, pandemia mundial.
A continuación, voy a compartir una parte del análisis que realizamos en PECAP sobre el FCEI. El informe completo está disponible en la sub-sección “recursos” de este enlace: https://www.pecap.pe/data-y-recursos.
Peru’s young people took to the streets last week and made their voices heard. Peaceful protests were met with police aggression and two people, Inti Sotelo Camargo and Jack Brian Pintado Sánchez, were killed. By Monday of this week, a new President, Francisco Sagasti, was chosen by congress to lead the country. President Sagasti has held many roles in his career, including leading FINCyT, a government fund to support initiatives in science and innovation.
Women in Peru have been breaking paradigms for thousands of years. Literally.
This week, archaeologists concluded that 9,000 year-old skeleton of a woman found in the Andean highlands in Peru indicated that she was a hunter, rather than a gatherer. She was buried with a “big-game hunting kit,” according to the New York Times. While this finding was surprising to some scientists, it won’t be to the many female startup founders currently living in Peru today.
In fact, also this week, three Peruvian women were selected as finalists for the WeXchange Pitch Competition as part of the WeXchange forum, the largest forum for female technology entrepreneurs in Latin America.
Most conferences in Peru have themes that are variations of “How can we build a better future?” Well, next week’s Innovate Peru Summit shows that the future is here and is being built by tech entrepreneurs.
With speakers like David Velez, CEO of Nubank, Mariana Costa, CEO of Laboratoria, and Simon Borreo, CEO of Rappi, it isn’t exaggeration to say this is the most significant conference of the year in Peru.
We are experiencing accelerating changes in food consumption in Latin America, and it is essential to tackle the sustainability issue now. Peru startup Sinba does just that, and investors have taken notice.
While well-known tech startups aim to get food to the end consumer, Sinba ensures the food waste is dealt with properly. Founders Pipo Reiser and Andrea Rivera recently raised an investment round that included participation from local individual investors and IDB Lab.
This week I’m sharing an article I recently wrote for Crunchbase. Many startups have found innovative ways to adapt and thrive through the current crisis. There are great examples from across Latin America, including a few startups with presence in Peru: Fitco, Poliglota and Joinnus.