Launch of new funding option for Latin American startups
For a number of months, I’ve had the pleasure to converse with Ian Haet, CEO of Startup Stock Exchange, about his progress in creating a marketplace where startups from around the world can more easily receive investment. Now, the company announced that a couple weeks after launching with an initial startup, VIP Only, they have more than 97 applications from startups all around the world with one region leading the pack: Latin America.
Although deal flow is still an issue in many countries in Latin America having more options on the investment side of the equation certainly is welcome news. Ian understands this and, it’s for this reason that he’s been working so hard at making his vision a reality. He understands the need for such an offering and is extremely open to any advice or suggestions I’ve been presumptuous enough to offer. He has obtain angel investment from none other than Greg Kidd, who advises Square and was an early investor in Twitter.
According to the company, the region with the most applications is Latin America 21.6%), followed by Europe (17.5%), India (16.5%), Africa (14.4%), South East Asia/ Australia (13.4%), the Caribbean (8.2%) and the MENA-region (4.1%). “We are very satisfied with the amount of companies that have registered and the geographical distribution”, says Mr. Haet. Talking about the potential for this type of platform, he goes on to state that, “We estimate that until now only 1% of the startups worldwide have had access to funding.”
As I’ve written in the past, my goal own is to create a Latin American seed fund called Tayrona Ventures. In the meantime, having more funding options available in the region will help convince more and more talented potential entrepreneurs to create their own startups (improving the deal flow situation in the process). While “top of the pyramid” startups can currently also make use of AngelList for their funding needs, I think the Startup Stock Exchange is something that solid startups in the region should take a look at.
What do you think of about this type of option for startups in the region? Please feel free to leave a comment below and I’ll respond.