Yesterday, I had an excellent conversation with the impressive group of guys behind Brazilian real estate and automotive aggregator service Fisgo. Brazil has been experiencing more than 20% growth in both markets and the World Cup and Olympics are sure make things even more interesting.
The team, based out of Rio de Janeiro, includes Federico Alves as CEO as well as Eduardo Rodrigues and Helio Lemos. This group has previously worked at Buscapé, QueBarato and other Internet sites. As mathematicians and experienced developers, they definitely have the chops to give Fisgo the technological tools (e.g., cloud computing, etc.) necessary to have a high performing site.
The big challenge in my mind is marketing and branding. Although, they mentioned that new traffic is increasing by over 80% in monthly visitors, they definitely have a substantial hill to climb to get users to go to their site first instead of established players such as Zap in real estate (or new players such as VivaReal).
However, if they are able to establish their brand, the aforementioned companies in addition to Mercado Libre and others will most likely become Fisgo customers looking to get quality lead traffic driven to their sites. The real competitors are companies such as TrovitBrasil, a division of Trovit, an aggregator in a number of countries.
The performance of the site is quite fast and the user interface is well designed although the choice of including banner ads is interesting as it could detract from the focus of getting users to other sites. Needless to say, I’m sure a savvy investor (or investors) will see great potential in this business when they dig further.
Since it just launched a few months ago, this phase is more focused on proving the model and they seem to have good data to show this. With investment and guidance, I wouldn’t be surprised to see someone take advantage of the platform that this team has built to expand into new geographic markets, new segments such as group deals and other areas.
The company plans on talking with investors in a few months and I’m sure we’ll be hearing more about them in the near future.