Chile's national startup accelerator, Start-Up Chile, announced that it will make follow-on investments in nine of its top alumni startups. This is part of the accelerator's brand-new SCALE Program that help bridge the post-accelerator venture funding gap in Latin America, by raising further rounds of private venture capital.
Each company will receive $100K each in equity-free funding, but they company must stay in Chile for a full year to keep growing their businesses. The founders must also work as a Start-Up Chile mentor during the year, to help improve the entrepreneurial ecosystem.
“In Latin America there’s a lack of experts — you can count on your fingers the success stories that we have,” said Sebastian Vidal, director of Start-Up Chile, to TechCrunch. “So the solution, for now, is recruiting external talent to jump-start the local tech ecosystem through the accelerator, and provide incentives for entrepreneurs to stay in Chile after the program ends.”
Money is not the only incentive for founders to stay in Chile, it's also about the opportunities the region can bring to these startups. Start-Up Chile first launched in 2010, and founded the concept of Startup Nations, now an organization with 49 members. Start-Up Chile provides USD$40,000 of equity-free funding to early-stage, globally-scalable startups from around the world. The funding is accompanied by a one-year temporary visa that allows foreign entrepreneurs to execute business activities in the country. The follow-on fund called SCALE looked at 90 startups from 25 countries, who would fit the opportunity-opening program.
Start-Up Chile SCALE Companies
1. TeliportMe– Share the panoramas you take from your inbuilt panorama app to the largest panorama social network with over 4M registered users around the world.
2. Bureo– Bureo Skateboards designs and manufactures a unique line of sustainable skateboards by utilizing the growing amount of plastic pollution in Chilean communities and coastlines.
3. RETIDIAG– helps primary healthcare centers screen diabetic patients and detect risk for blindness at a low cost through its retinal picture and telemedicine evaluation software.
4. Recorrido.cl– A ticket search and booking platform for the South American interurban bus market that lets travelers compare bus prices, schedules and services on any device.
5. Guarnic– Essential tool for managing guards and security.
6. ZenHub– Project management solution for GitHub that displays real-time task boards, team analytics, and integrated file sharing.
7. GroupRaise.com– Online platform that helps users organize fundraisers where 20-200 people eat at a local restaurant that donates a percentage of the bill to a charitable cause
8. Uanbai– Trading hub, that allows anyone to buy or sell anything on Twitter and Facebook with a One Click solution.
9. themidgame– Helps brands advertise through social media influencers on YouTube, Instagram, blogs and other platforms.
According to Start-Up Chile, the most represented countries in this new generation are Chile (30%), USA (20%), Argentina (6%), Brazil (6%), and India (6%). The most represented industries from this batch are from IT & Enterprise Software (21%), Education (11%), Mobile & Wireless (10%), E-commerce (9%), and Healthcare & Biotechnology (7%) Regarding the gender of the founders, 16% are women compared to most of the accelerators in Silicon Valley.
Image Credit: Flickr/ BruceW