SoftBank in Latin America and the new fund for regional startups

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The SoftBank capital investment fund in Latin America marks a new strategy for the business group in the region and will boost startups in the region

SoftBank in Latin America and the new fund for regional startups

SoftBank has been recognized in the global market as one of the largest telecommunications providers in Japan. In addition, it has also ventured into the investment and presence in other markets worldwide in companies such as Sprint Corporation, Vector, and Alibaba Group, estimating his earnings in USD $ 9,158,765 million for the closing of 2018, according to figures from Bloomberg.

Leer en español: SoftBank en América Latina y el nuevo fondo para startups regionales

Considering that the business group has established a new global presence strategy, it announced the opening of an investment fund to technology companies in Latin America, with an allocation of USD $ 5000 million.

Through the investment line called SoftBank Innovation Fund, the largest regional economic support fund will be consolidated for startups in areas specializing in e-commerce, digital financial services, medical services, mobility, and insurance.

In addition, the SoftBank Latin America Local Hub group is also established, which will be in charge of positioning the companies that already receive investments from the business group in the region, the existing portfolio of companies includes WeWork and Uber. The countries benefiting from the investment program will be Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, and Mexico, under the leadership of the newly appointed CEO Marcelo Claure, Bolivian-American who was in charge of Sprint Corporation.

According to an interview conducted by the Republic, Claure mentions that the importance of creating an investment fund in Latin America reflects that "the time has come for the region to create this new type of entrepreneur who knows how to use technology to attract disruptive models. and change the way people live in the region".

In the next 20 years, the investment fund will support regional companies through the initial capital needed to promote the various projects towards an initial public offering (IPO). With the implementation of a guided vision towards innovation in artificial technology and 5G networks, it is expected that a strengthening in the competitive advantage of these sectors in Latin America will be visible.

High expectations for Latin America

In an official statement of SoftBank, it is emphasized that the importance of the incursion in the Latin American market, consists in the opportunities it offers in that it represents 10% of the world population and 8% of the world GDP (twice the GDP of India and half of China), facilitating growth for the accelerated deployment of technology and innovation. With offices in Sao Paulo, Mexico City, Bogotá, and Buenos Aires, entrepreneurs can receive support to venture into the markets of the region. Companies like Rappi in Colombia, with a valuation that exceeds USD $ 1,000 million, could get to benefit from this type of programs to venture into new regional markets.

Read also: SoftBank: the new player in the technology world

Simón Borrero, CEO of Rappi, clarifies in an interview his perception regarding SoftBank and its regional presence, affirming that "the region is ready to transform itself technologically, SoftBank is making a visionary bet and many investors will want to accompany them".

LAVCA (The Association for Private Capital Investment in Latin America) shows that investments in capital in the region increased from USD $ 500 million in 2017 to USD $ 1,141 million in 2018. This would be explained by Julie Ruvolo, director of the organization, based on that "the region has arrived at a momentum of innovation that has attracted foreign investment to potentiate the growth projections for technological undertakings". In this order of ideas, the features of the region will contribute to the scope of the investment program to create an environment that will benefit regional startups and large investors.


LatinAmerican Post | Alejandra Caballero

Translated from "SoftBank en América Latina y el nuevo fondo para startups regionales"