Kiwibots startup office in Bogotá, Colombia

Latin American startups raised more than BRL 77 billion, and Brazil stands out

100 Open Startups
3 min readMay 18, 2022

Bruno Rondani, CEO of 100 Open Startups, talks about the platform’s expansion beyond the Brazilian market and the growth of startups in the region.

Latin America has been consolidating itself as one of the largest innovation hubs in the world, with twice the population of the United States, around 650 million people, and BRL 30 trillion in GDP. In 2021, Latin American startups attracted more than BRL 77 billion in investments according to the Association for Private Capital Investments in Latin America , or Lavca.

According to Bruno Rondani, CEO of 100 Open Startups , the large number of potential consumers combined with high rates of cell phone use and hours spent on the internet helped to surpass even the numbers of China or India. “This context makes the region one of the most digitally active in the world, opening up opportunities for startups in sectors such as fintech, retailtech and construction. Other areas with great potential include sectors such as: ICT, tourism, mobility, energy, health and agriculture.”

The 100 Open Startups, by the way, is expanding its main index, the 100 Open Startups, of open innovation, beyond Brazil. Applications for startups and corporations for the 2022 edition of the Ranking 100 Open Startups are open until June 15th. The list, which has been published since 2016 in Brazil and arrived in Colombia in the 2021 edition, focuses on the practice of open innovation and highlights the most attractive startups for the corporate market and the leading corporations in open innovation with startups.

Read more: Brazilian startups have already attracted BRL 6.8 billion in investments in 2022

“The initiative is part of the expansion process of 100 Open Startups, which wants to boost the practice of open innovation in more countries, as happened in Brazil and has also been the case in Colombia. Here in Brazil, we are a reference in open innovation and we want to be the world representatives of this theme”, comments Bruno Rondani. With the expansion and growth of the practice, the number of open innovation contracts is expected to double compared to 2021, when more than 26,000 relationships between corporations and startups were recorded.

In 2021, 18 unicorns appeared in Latin America , almost all startups that explore digital businesses, with an emphasis on countries such as Brazil, Argentina, Mexico and Colombia. “We look at Latin America, and even globally, where there is a global race where innovation has increasingly become an ecosystem product. Innovation has always had this nature, but in a way, there was an organizational effort by companies to focus innovation in their R&D centers. In parallel, we had Venture Capital funds betting on technologies that could generate startups. We move from a paradigm of innovation coming from investments in R&D and VC, to innovation built on ecosystems”, comments Bruno.

“We generate many startups that populate the ecosystem, guided by this initial relationship with corporations. This process of innovation with startups has spread all over the world and in Latin America (Brazil is very prominent). We saw in these other countries, with less intensity than in Brazil, however, an increasing interest and now yes, at a faster pace. Now we have managed to make a ranking in Colombia, with a high density of companies opening up to innovation. And then the region starts to interconnect, we start to have more and more open innovation programs or startups that we call open startups, looking for markets in the region and in that the pandemic helps a lot, because it became easier to enter countries using technology of innovation, open innovation platforms are starting to become popular and are becoming much more intense. Hence this moment of expansion”, reinforces Bruno.

Source: Forbes Tech