Sebastián Vidal is new director at Start-Up Chile

Today is Horacio Melo’s last day as the Executive Director of Start Up Chile. He has served as the Executive Director for the past 3 years, after taking over the post held by Jean Boudeguer. Boudeguer left Start Up Chile to run Cumplo, a Peer 2 Peer lending service, founded by Start Up Chile founder Nicolás Shea. Continue reading

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Kudo!: Makes learning a second language easy for children

A recent report from Education First (EF) ranks the level of English spoken across 60 countries worldwide; in short, things don’t look good for Latin America, which is the worst-performing region worldwide in terms of proficiency. Of the 16 countries EF has designated to have a “Very Low Level” of English, an equal percentage (44%) were divided between Latin America (including Chile, Colombia, Venezuela, Guatemala) and the Middle East. Five Latin American countries (Peru, Mexico, Brazil, Costa Rica, and Uruguay) obtained a slightly higher distinction as having a “Low Level” of English. The only Latin American country that obtained a “Medium Level” of English proficiency within the report was Argentina. The report concludes: “A poor level of English is still one of the most important competitive weaknesses in Latin America.”

Luckily, there are a couple of entrepreneurs that are making strides in turning this all around.

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Smooth Scaling: How to Keep Your Startup Afloat

Editor’s note: This post comes courtesy of Mark Kirkpatrick, a writer and online entrepreneur living in Los Angeles. He often shares his passion for small business through his writing, and he hopes that this infographic offers some great tips for fellow entrepreneurs!

The Latin American market is growing stronger every day, spurred by not only multinational corporations but by the small businesses that crop up weekly and the owners of those businesses. To ensure that the market does actually grow over time and not just recycle new companies over closed ones, small businesses need to know how to scale their growth appropriately.

The following infographic from SmartTollFreeNumber.com will give you some idea of why having both a short-term and a long-term scaling strategy is important for the survival of small business, and will outline some of the benefits that such a plan carries with it.

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Early stage startup funding in Latin America

Editor’s note: This post comes courtesy of Adam Komarnicki. Adam is a Chief Customer Officer at Fundacity, a Santiago-based startup that provides tools connecting startups and investors, to help them select and grow the next big thing. You can contact him at [email protected].

If you are a startup founder based in Latin America and tend to read US tech websites such as TechCrunch or Venture Beat, you wonder if the news about startup valuations and rounds raised is for real. The amounts are sometimes enormous! The reality in Latin America is quite different; serious financing is both harder to get and usually much less smart if you succeed. Don’t lose your hope however, because the situation is improving, especially for early stage startups. Let’s look at the most common options of external funding for such startups – LatAm angels and accelerators.

However, before starting to think where to look for funding, early stage startups should be asking themselves these two questions:

  • How much money do I need in the next 8-10 months to grow my business?
  • How important it is for me to attract “smart money” i.e. additional benefits from my investor such as advice and contacts?

We will give you an overview of your options based on these criteria.

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Spain’s FancyBox set to raise capital via an IPO on SSX

Just in….

Editor’s Note: We’ve been following SSX (Startup Stock Exchange) since they first launched to the world. And today we have an important development to share out of Latin America. This official information comes courtesy of SSX Public Relations team.

SSX Ventures Launches Investment Offering in Latin eCommerce Beauty Platform

Investment Vehicle offers the opportunity to invest in leading Latin American ecommerce website FancyBox.com

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AndesBeat Startup Week in Review…

I’m baaaaack….! Sorry I have been M.I.A. over the past few months and posting intermittently. After 3 years of entirely too much work and little play, a cowboy cutie pie in midwestern USA has won my heart. So now I have someone with whom I can explore strange new worlds; talk about the concept of a university degree in ‘space ethics’; and share my crazy futuristic global business predictions. And to think my bit of eccentricity and randomness is all completely ‘normal’ to him. Imagine what a character he is!

Aside from that, life at AndesBeat has been busy, productive and definitively ALL GOOD DAYS! Our team is growing. Although we still consider media as our core, we have been expanding our consulting and value added services. As the first hint of forthcoming economic development in emerging economies is infrastructure development – we’re supporting prime contractors and their suppliers with raising funds ($50 million+) for infrastructure development in emerging economies. This also requires establishing first level G2G relations (government to government); early stage market research; and content creation.  Over the next weeks we will be introducing some of our awesome international consultants who support these companies in their early stage international market exploration and expansion. Continue reading

Reaching a Good Balance: Being Too Cautious or Taking Too Many Risks with Your Startup

Editor’s note: The post below is from Brian Flax, a freelance writer based outside of the Washington, D.C., area. 

Success doesn’t come without taking risks, whether you’re investing money in the stock market or creating your own startup business venture. It’s important to find a balance between being too cautious with your business decisions and taking too many risks. While it’s good to take risks, putting all your money in one pot could lead to failure, so making carefully calculated business decisions should be your number one priority. If you’re too cautious, your business many never grow to its full potential. Take too many risks, and you could end up closing shop before you’ve even had a chance to start.

Let’s take a look at how to reach a good balance between being too cautious with your startup venture, and taking too many risks.

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World Startup Wiki launches today

A year ago (March 2013) we announced Bowei Gai’s 29 country self-funded tour for his ‘World Startup Report’. We further supported his mission by hosting him in Chile and ultimately becoming World Startup Ambassadors reporting on insights and trends from Chile’s underground startup community.

Nearly one year to the date, we are proud to announce yet another great resource that was born from Bowei’s tour. From the team at World Startup Report comes World Startup Wiki – an interactive local guide to building a startup anywhere in the world.

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Chile innovates LatAm’s spirits industry with craft wines

Editor’s Note: Happy International Women’s History month! We would like to take this time to celebrate women around the world, including the 5 very awesome ones working at AndesBeat. Over recent months our team (consulting) has grown and we are now a team of 6 working on projects with U.S., European and Southeast Asian companies who are doing business in and with Latin America. From international business regulations and global infrastructure development to Design Thinking, over the next weeks, we’ll share their insights, commentary and experiences on the present (and future) of doing business in and with Latin America. We welcome your ideas and guest contributions.

 It’s not an overstatement to say that the very future of Chilean wine is being decided right now.

- Peter Richards, author of “The Wines of Chile”

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Lessons from women in Uganda: Chile, take note.

Mary is a small, slim woman no taller than 5 foot 3, but she speaks with a sincerity and conviction unparalleled among people two times her size, and when she does so, the world stops and listens. When you speak to her, her eye contact never wavers from yours as she carefully digests every word, consonant, and syllable that you say. She is a mother, a teacher, a leader, and an entrepreneur (in no particular order, she puts her heart into everything). Her laughter is contagious, her kindness infectious, her spirit uplifting, and her ambition inspiring. She embodies beauty and strength.

Mary (whose name has been changed for anonymity) is a woman that I met last April, who I had the pleasure of working alongside throughout 2013. Five years ago, Mary and her family were living in a mud shack. When a local organization offered to give her a microloan to start her own business, Mary wasn’t sure she was capable of becoming an entrepreneur, but she mustered up her confidence and began her own store, selling bottles of soda for around $0.20 USD in her small village. A few years later, Mary saved enough money from her small business to build a semi-permanent house. She and her family are healthy and financially stable; most of the money she makes now goes towards her children’s school fees to ensure that they receive a good education. Furthermore, she’s now an Assistant Director of the nonprofit organization that gave her the loan to start her business in the first place. She inspires women in three different countries to follow her lead. She is Ugandan, and she is the strongest woman I have ever met.

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