The Investment and Startup Community in Peru

Many travelers visit Peru to experience Machu Picchu, and though incredible, there is much more to this country than its wonder of the world. Known for its gastronomic sector, Peru has some of the most diverse (and delicious) food in the world. Through its long history of eating seafood, mixed with Spanish, Japanese and Chinese immigration, it’s always a pleasure to go to Peru, even if it’s only to eat, and entrepreneurial Peruvians have taken advantage.

Peru has diverse terrain, from the steeply sloping Andes and dense jungles to the cerulean coastline. About one-third of Peruvian residents live near or close to the ocean. The population is just shy of 32 million, surpassing Chile but falling below Colombia. Monthly wages are on the upswing at 1680.67 Peruvian Sol (roughly US$519), with a minimum wage of 850 Peruvian Sol.

The capital city, Lima, is experiencing rapid growth and the government is allocating investment towards more infrastructure and improving public transportation. Foreign investors are paying close attention to the new Cuzco airport which offers easier access to Machu Picchu, though has caught some local scrutiny. Peru offers multiple visas for foreigners interested in the business sector, but these visas can come with an unwanted amount of red tape. Continue reading…

Ep 24 Jonathan Nelson, How the Serving Leader Empowers Startups and Changes Communities

There are many roads to Silicon Valley, but you’ll likely not hear one as unusual as the one my guest today took. Jonathan Nelson started out as the son of missionaries in Honduras and Costa Rica and learned the role of a serving leader by watching his Dad lead a mission organization. But he left Central America for nursing school, a computer science education, and finally headed to Silicon Valley.

Today, Jonathan runs Hackers and Founders, the largest network of entrepreneurs in the world. In this conversation we walk through the steps that led him from nursing school to startup founder, how he created an entrepreneurial meetup in a bar that led to an acceleration co-op, and the ways he’s iterating to bring more funding and more improvement to the cultures of Latin America through his company, Hackers and Founders.

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Doing Business in Ecuador: What You Need to Know

Ecuador is a geographically small, Andean country rich in history and home to 16.1 million people, which makes it nearly the same size as Chile by population. The capital city, Quito, is officially recognized as a world heritage site by the United Nations. In recent years, Ecuador has transformed into a much more stable place to do business with one of the best performing economies in Latin America.

With relatively easy access to the US, many companies are coming to Ecuador to take advantage of its excellent trade routes, sometimes friendly trade agreements, and dynamic workforce. The minimum wage raised to $375 USD this year, ranking as one of the highest in South America. Ecuador’s close proximity to bordering countries, Colombia and Peru, make it a prime location for trade and a source for cheaper materials. Continue reading…

Ep 23 Marco DeMello, Building a Digital Security Company in Brazil that Serves The World

marco-de-mello-digital security

Digital security is a problem globally, not just in the more highly developed countries of the world. My guest today is Marco DeMello, a startup founder from Brazil who has built one of the most successful mobile app security companies in the world. His story is incredible, from his experience at Microsoft to startup founder, and you can hear his entire Journey on this episode.

Marco’s company, Psafe has produced one of the top 5 apps in Brazil and continues to pave the way when it comes to digital security. In this conversation, the two of us chat about digital security in general, Marco gives his advice for Latin American founders launching in the U.S., tells why U.S. based VCs should take a closer look at Latin America, and shares what he learned reporting to Bill Gates during his time at Microsoft.

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