Investment Thesis: Technology adoption and middle class growth

Latin American consumers will evolve over the next 5-10 years, driven by an increase in technology penetration and raise in middle class affluence.  These changes will uncover unmet needs for the at-large population across multiple verticals, and agile start-ups are best positioned to take advantage of these opportunities.

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To date, the amount of seed capital available in Latin America has been constrained, to a large extent due to a very limited amount of previous success stories and the significant cost of scaling up businesses across the regions.

With the advent of low cost infrastructure (cloud computing) and higher penetration of internet media (social networks), growing businesses regionally or expanding to more developed markets has become a viable strategy for startups.

Combined with the advent of venture capital funds like Escala.vc that are focused on providing seed capital for entrepreneurs, we expect to develop a new batch of startups that have successful Latin American or global platforms, and are able to create and capture significantly more value than previous generations of entrepreneurs.

Technology adoption:

  • Mobile Broadband Connections to reach 500mm in 2017 from 100mm in 2012
  • Smartphone penetration to reach 45% in 2017, from 20% in 2012

Middle Class growth

  • Affluent and middle class expected to double to 100mm by 2020 from 2010