This Week in Fintech Latam (15 Oct)
Hola Amig@s Fintech,
Espero que se encuentren de maravilla! I’m so pleased to share we’re already 200 subscribers strong. Thanks, friends! Below is your digest of fintech financings and exits from the first two weeks of October.
The Latam startup scene continues making mainstream headlines with fintechs leading the charge,
Brazil is in a fintech M&A frenzy,
The Mexican banking commission issued more yeas (19) and nays (7) regarding fintech license applications
Editor’s Note: If you’re an early-stage startup founder raising equity or debt, I may be able to help - email me at email@example.com
📊 Notable Stat
Mexican startups have raised nearly $3 billion this year, which is roughly as much as the last nine years combined, according to The Economist.
🔦Spotlight on Argentina: Q&A with Hanna Schiuma, VP of Wealth & Community at ank
Q) Three words to describe yourself? A) I’m a doer, I’m dynamic and I’m a sponge (open to learning more every day).
Q) Three fun facts about the fintech landscape in Argentina that everyone should know? A) The sector grew by 70% during the pandemic, fintechs employ more than 20,000 people, Ualá’s $350 million Series D in August this year is considered the most successful private raise ever in the history of Argentina
Q) What is one product that will make a huge difference for financial inclusion? A) Crypto assets
Q) What are you most excited about with regard to Latam fintech right now? A) The possibilities regarding interoperability and open banking, how decentralized finance (defi) and traditional finance is merging with traditional banks and institutions approaching crypto solutions
Q) One resource you would recommend for those interested in learning more? A) Sin Sucursal podcast and TWIF Latam (😊 thanks!)
💼 Job Opportunity
IDB Lab is looking for a Washington DC-based Senior Investment Officer for Latin America. The application deadline closes today (linked here).
💸 Venture Financing
Crabi, the first Mexican insurtech to receive a license from the insurance commission (CNSF), raised a $4 million Seed round led by Kaszek Ventures. Redwood Ventures and Tuesday Capital also participated in the round which will fund the continued build-out of the car insurance platform.
Nelo, the Mexico City-based buy-now-pay-later app raised $20 million Series A led by NYC-based Two Sigma Ventures, along with various notable angel investors such as Anthony Pompliano, Gokul Rajaram and Emilie Choi.
FinZi, a Colombian digital bank for teens, raised $350,000 in a Pre-seed round with participation from Innopact and First Check Ventures.
Trii, the Bogotá-based investment app, raised a $5.5 million Seed round led by Global Founders Capital with participation from Y Combinator and a group of Latam angels including Daniel and Andrés Bilbao, Fabián Gomez and Freddy Vega. The platform allows users to transact in the Colombian stock exchange and plans to expand its offerings to the US and Chilean exchanges as well as offering credit cards.
MOVii, the Colombian mobile wallet service, raised a $15 million Series B to develop a cryptocurrency-buying platform and grow its offerings for business customers. The round was co-led by Square and Hard Yaka. MOVii is the country’s first non-bank issuer and acquirer, as well as being a fully regulated depository and payments institution (Sedpe in Spanish).
🤝 M&A - Fintech
Dock (formerly Conductor), the São Paolo-based financial technology infrastructure provider, announced the acquisition of BPP (fka Brasil Pré-Pagos), a fully licensed payment institution.
🏦 M&A - Banks, Insurers & Incumbents
SuRed, the Colombian postal network, received authorization from Colombia banking regulators to acquire shares in Powwi, a regulated depository and payments institution (Sedpe). This will enable the MiCuenta-SuRed by Powwi product which would allow customers to process payments, transfers, deposits, and savings all via QR codes.
Porto Seguro, the São Paolo-based insurance company, signed an agreement to acquire 74.6% of Atar, a fintech that develops Banking as a Service (BaaS) solutions and banking infrastructure for companies.
Bradesco, Brazil’s third-largest bank, announced its purchase of a 49.99% stake in digital bank Digio for $113.2 million. Digio offers a bank account, credit card and personal loans to 2.7 million customers. The transaction is subject to approval by the Brazilian Central Bank and other authorities.
MEKA, the SPAC created by Mercado Libre and Kaszek, completed its IPO on Nasdaq, raising $287 million and launching its search for a Latam tech company to partner with and take public.
🚀 Product Launches
🏦 Financial Services & Banking
Superdigital, Banco Santander’s digital platform for economic inclusion, announced its debut of a new multi-currency product in Argentina. The free account can be opened by anyone over 18 years old with an ID via their cell phone and is linked to a Mastercard prepaid card.
📰 Other News
13 Latam fintechs were named in CB Insight’s 250 top fintech companies of 2021: Ualá, Creditas, EBANX, Hash, Loft, Nubank, QuintoAndar, Addi, Belvo, Bitso, Clip, Fondeadora, and Konfío.
The Mexican banking commission (CNBV) announced the rejection of several fintech licenses: Propeller, Cumplo, and Inverspot’s crowdfunding (IFC) applications were rejected as well as Flink, Mibo, and Cacao Paycard for the depository institution (IFPE) license.
Ualá is seeking a new partner for its Mexico operations after UnDosTres (aka Belanea)’s application for the IFPE was rejected.
Of 93 total applications for licenses under the Fintech Law created in 2018, so far Mexican regulators at the CNBV has fully approved 19, including NVIO Pagos (Bitso), BRX Payments (Broxel), STP, and Cuenca as IFPEs plus Likideo MX, Cien Ladrillos and Play Business as IFCs. Another 34 fintechs have received provisional approval.
📚 Deeper Reads
🌎 Fintech Around the World
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Y’all be good out there. ¡Saludos! Até a próxima!