When I meet with US and European entrepreneurs and investors, they frequently want to know what startups are doing well in Latin America.
There are generally three types of startups that generally do well:
1. Latin America based startups solving problems for Latin American market
2. Startups that target the US/European market and have a Latin American back office
3. Brazilian startups that generally target the Brazilian market
Each niche has their own pros and cons, but at Magma, we invest in a subset of the first niche: B2B startups that are based in Latin America and serve Latin American companies and the second niche: startups that target the US/European market, but have their back office in Latin America.
I’ll leave Brazil’s burgeoning startup scene aside for now and focus on some of the most interesting startups I’m seeing in Spanish speaking Latin America. Post in the comments if there’s a startup you think I should include. (more…)
I’m just back from my third trip to Colombia since 2012. Before my first trip, I didn’t know what to expect and wrote a blog post about the experience. I came back in 2015 and 2016 and saw huge positive changes in Cartagena. I also went to Medellin, a beautiful city nesteled in a mountain valley for the first time. This post compares my experience from 2012 with 2016 and talks about why Medellin is a hidden gem that’s just starting to get its due both for tourism, but also as a potential tech hub in South America.
In 2012, a group of Chilean friends and I planned to go to Colombia’s north coast for two weeks and hang out on its beautiful tropical beaches.
I had studied a bit of Colombia in high school Spanish class, as my teacher was Colombian and wanted to share Colombia’s natural beauty with us. Being high schoolers, most of us only wanted to learn about Pablo Escobar, the drug gangs, movies, the violence, the civil war, how someone could murder a soccer star after scoring an own goal (watch the documentary, its really good)…pretty much the only news about Colombia we ever heard in the US. (more…)