Since the 2011 launch of the Wayra spaces and the Telefonica Innovation funds (Axon Partners in Colombia, InvestTech in Brazil, and Scale Capital in Chile), Telefonica has emerged as one of the most active investors in Latin American startups, with almost €12 million invested across more than 20 deals in 2018.
From 2011 to the end of 2017, Telefonica invested an additional €72m+ in Latin American startups, including €16.6m invested in 350 startups by the Wayra accelerators, and €56.6m invested in 22 startups by the Telefonica Innovation funds. (See here for a round-up of 2017 investment activity.)
Notably, Wayra invested €1m in ♀️female entrepreneurs globally in 2018. About 25% of its historic portfolio includes female co-founders.
2018 Latin American Investment Highlights from Wayra and the Telefonica Innovation Funds
- Wayra Argentina invested in Rocketpin, a Chilean startup that provides point-of-sale auditing software, following an undisclosed investment by Alaya Capital Partners in 2018 to fuel expansion to Argentina. Wayra Chile invested in 2017.
- Wayra Argentina invested in cloud services provider Nubity. In 2016, ALLVP and LIV Capital led a US$2m Series A in Nubity, with participation from Capital Invent and Stella Maris.
- Wayra Argentina made an investment in Winclap, a mobile adtech startup that was accelerated at Wayra Argentina. In 2017, Winclap raised US$1.5m from undisclosed investors.
- Wayra Argentina made an investment in Decidata, a programmatic ad platform. ON VENTURES also invested US$250k in 2018. In 2017, Angels Nest led a US$1.1m seed investment in Decidata, with participation from Wayra México, Wayra Argentina, Wayra Perú, ON VENTURES, and others.
- Wayra Argentina partially exited edtech Acamica via secondary sale. Wayra Argentina invested in Acamica in 2013.
- Wayra Argentina exited small business management platform Colppy via a full acquisition by Nubox. Wayra Argentina invested in Colppy in 2014. Buenos Aires seed fund Trupa invested in Colppy in 2017.
- Wayra Brazil made investments in Pier, DB18, SocialMiner, Rankmyapp and GetupCloud.
2018 Follow-on Investments in Wayra Brasil Portfolio Companies:
- Pedralbes Partners and Aihuishou, a Chinese electronics recycle startup backed by Tiger Global, made a US$3m investment in Trocafone, a Brazil-based marketplace for used electronics, as an extension of its 2017 US$15m Series B from Callfort, MIT Castor Ventures Fund, FJ Labs, Rocketship, and Mercado Libre Fund.
- Existing investors include Wayra, Quasar Builders, NXTP Labs, South Ventures, Lumia Capital, and 500 Startups.
- READ LAVCA’s 2017 interview with Trocafone CO-Founder & CEO Guille Freire.
- Inseed made an undisclosed seed investment in data analytics startup Cinnecta.
- Criatec II made an undisclosed seed investment in data analytics startup Spumenews.
- Unnamed FOs made an undisclosed Series A investment in consumer debt fintech Quero Quitar.
- HR startup Gupy raised an undisclosed Series A from unnamed investors.
- Monkey, a digital trading platform for receivables, raised an undisclosed seed round from unnamed investors.
- Canary and angels made an undisclosed seed investment in digital telco Teravoz.
- monashees, Indicator Capital and angels made a US$730k seed investment in Back4App.
- Canary and angels made a US$700k seed investment in legaltech Mediação Online.
- Wayra Chile invested in legal/contract management platform Webdox as part of a $775k investment round.
- Wayra Chile portfolio company Simpliroute raised US$300k with Fondo CLIN.
Wayra Chile portfolio companies raised over US$850k in follow-on capital in 2018.
- Wayra Colombia made a seed investment in intelligent mobility platform Dashfleet. Co-founder Angela Pinzón was a Pitch finalist at WeXchange, a forum to connect high-growth entrepreneurs with mentors and investors, in Lima in 2018.
- Wayra Colombia made a follow-on investment in fintech ePayco as part of a US$500k round by an undisclosed investor. Wayra Colombia initially invested in 2016.
2018 Follow-on Investments in Wayra Colombia Portfolio Companies:
- DataGran, a New York based ad optimization startup, raised US$2.5m from York Capital Management and others. Wayra Colombia invested in 2017. Wayra Colombia and Quake Capital made an undisclosed investment in 2016.
- READ LAVCA’s 2017 interview with Founder & CEO Carlos Mendez.
- The Venture City, Velum Ventures, and Grupo Cisneros led a US$4.5m Series A in Fluvip, a Colombian influencer marketing platform with offices in Argentina, Mexico, Brazil, the US, and Spain. Fluvip was founded by Sebastián Jasminoy in Bogotá in 2012. Wayra Colombia invested in 2014.
- Tarefa raised US$350k from undisclosed investors. Wayra Colombia invested in 2016.
- Tiendapp raised US$350k from undisclosed investors. Wayra Colombia invested in 2017.
- Travel startup Viajala raised US$345k from undisclosed investors.
- Wayra México made a follow-on investment in SaaS startup SinCola.
- Wayra México made an investment in IoT SaaS startup Pulpomatic.
2018 Follow-on Investments in Wayra México Portfolio Companies:
- GC Capital and others made a US$570k investment in marketing platform Atlantia Search.
- Trebol Capital and an unnamed American angel made a US$400k investment in marketing platform Synapbox.
- Unnamed angels made an investment in digital education platform Boxies Toys, invested by Wayra México in 2017.
- ON VENTURES and Wayra Argentina made a follow-on investment in Decidata, a programmatic ad platform. In 2017, Angels Nest led a US$1.1m seed investment in the company, with participation from Wayra México, Wayra Argentina, Wayra Perú, ON VENTURES, and others.
- Room/apartment sharing platform Dada Room was acquired by Roomi.
- Wayra Perú invested in Fitco, a Peruvian gym management startup that also operates in Mexico, Chile, and Colombia.
- Wayra Perú invested in Decidata as part of a round with Wayra Argentina and Wayra Mexico and ON VENTURES.
- Wayra Perú invested in edtech Aprendiendo.la, as part of a US$250k seed round.
- Wayra Perú invested in business services platform Quantum Talent.
- Wayra Perú invested in IoT agtech Robotic Air Systems.
2018 Follow-on Investments in Wayra Perú Portfolio Companies:
- Peruvian gym management startup Fitco raised US$350k led by Angel Ventures Peru. CEO Andrea Baba says she plans to use the funding to grow revenue in these markets and expand to Argentina. Fitco was also accelerated at 500 Startups Mexico City in 2018.
- Peruvian payments processor Culqi raised US$500k from Angel Ventures Peru and others. Wayra Peru invested in Culqi in 2014.
- Amparo Nalvarte, CEO and Co-founder of Peruvian payments platform Culqi, was a pitch competition finalist at WeXchange, a forum to connect high-growth entrepreneurs with mentors and investors.
- UPDATE: In January 2019, Krealo, Credicorp’s open innovation arm, made an undisclosed investment in Culqi. Nalvarte said it’s the first time in Peru that a financial industry corporation has invested in a fintech:
“Esto es una muestra de cooperación en la que, la agilidad y sensibilidad de Culqi para crear productos simples y, el respaldo financiero y la llegada al mercado de las empresas del grupo Credicorp, harán que Culqi este presente en cada negocio, simplificándoles la vida.”
AXON PARTNERS GROUP
- Axon Partners made its first Peru investment in Mi Media Manzana, a dating platform operating in Peru, Colombia, Mexico, and Chile, investing US$750k. Previous investors include Sparklabs Global Ventures and Willowtree Ventures.
- Axon Partners and Top Seeds Lab made an undisclosed investment in Turismoi, a Peruvian tourism platform operating in Peru, Colombia, Ecuador, and Spain.
2018 Follow-on Investments in Axon Portfolio Companies:
- Movile made a US$9m Series A investment in Colombian grocery delivery platform Mercadoni. Axon Partners and Grupo Pegasus invested previously. Mercadoni is Movile’s first investment outside of Brazil.
- READ LAVCA’s 2017 interview with CEO Pedro Freire on why LatAm is an ideal market for grocery delivery.
- Scale Capital made a US$500k follow-on seed investment in 46 Degrees Technologies Inc. in Chile.
- Scale Capital made a US$2m investment in Fracttal, an IoT asset management platform. Fracttal has offices in Chile, Brazil, and Colombia with plans to expand to Mexico.
- Scale Capital led a US$5m investment in U-Planner, a Chilean edtech platform for higher education.
2018 Follow-on Investments in Scale Capital Portfolio Companies:
- Design/viz platform Inbenta raised US$6.5m form undisclosed investors.