Chilean startups: Are you ready for MIT Media Lab’s Aji Challenge?

Startups, developers, researchers and inventors in Chile, Encuentros is looking for you!  Applications for the Aji Challenge, sponsored by MIT Media Lab are now open. Apply before 31 March 2013 to qualify for a chance to win an all-expense paid trip to USA to pitch your idea.

MIT Media Lab recently kicked off the ‘Ají Challenge’ innovation and entrepreneurship contest, an initiative organized by ‘Encuentros 2013’ who reunites hundreds of professionals, professors, researchers and Chilean entrepreneurs abroad every year. Continue reading

Fortify.VC invites you to startup in Washington, DC with investment and mentorship

From the international startup media hustlers who brought you the first news of Riverwood Capital’s $100k LatAm Startup Challenge and also organized Chile’s Startup Pavillion in TechCrunch Disrupt  SF, we thought we would share some east coast U.S.A. love today.

Our big news of the day comes from our founders funding founders friends at Fortify.VC who are based in my very awesome hometown of Washington, DC (and yes, of course, we personally know them).

Their second annual pitch competition, Distilled Intelligence 2.0, is now open for submissions.

Start your application now

10 startups are going to each receive $100k in seed capital and hands-on support directly from the Fortify.VC co-founders in their 6 month accelerator ‘The Fort‘ in downtown Washington, DC. To understand the value of this, let me give you a little perspective – last year’s inaugural group of Distilled Intelligence 1.0 winners have raised $27 million USD since October 2011!!!

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Jump Chile – the first national university business competition

With this new youth contest Jump Chile and its motto “Boosting your idea”, EmprendeUC made a huge leap!

After 5 successful versions of this contest, the Pontificia Universidad Católica of Chile, in cooperation with EmprendeUC and SURA Chile and presented by the newspaper El Mercurio, organized the contest “Jump Chile”, which aims at motivating all the young entrepreneurs (pre and post graduates) to apply their business ideas, thesis, researches and projects in categories such as applications and mobile, products and services, health, education and social entrepreneurship.

Last Monday Jump Chile was launched, among others with the presence of the Minister of Economy, Pablo Longueira, who in his speech stressed the necessity of competitions like that for our country and that this step towards innovation is so significant and necessary to achieve development. Continue reading

Brazil’s Spotwish Go! ready to show DevCup why they are the people’s choice!

DevCup’ is an annual competition hosted by Evernote, a U.S. founded company, which allows users to capture, organize, and find information across multiple platforms.

Recently their 2nd annual competition was launched, aimed at discovering developers and inspiring new apps based on Evernote software and supporting new features within the Evernote platform.

One of the winners in this competition was Spotwish Go! from Brazil. Unlike the other 5 winners, this team was actually voted for by the public, meaning the public already loves Spotwish Go!

And they hope, so will you!

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Are you ready to face the “Key Challenge”?

The “Desafío Clave” (Key Challenge) is a development of the platform Socialab, an independent initiative of TECHO Chile.

It seeks to support products, services and business models which provide an efficient solution for solving the problems of all the people who are permanently excluded by the society, be it due to the lack of opportunities or resources.

It aims at motivating specifically young people to contribute their creative ideas in order to overcome poverty in Chile.

What is so striking about Desafío Clave is that unlike other competitive funds, this one actually monitors and follows up with each one of the ideas contributed to the contest.

It all starts with basic concepts, but with the help of professionals and the community, the ideas will develop until they finally, over time, convert to sustainable projects.

The second version of this contest was launched last Friday, August 17th, 2012 by INJUV with a public opening ceremony in Santiago de Chile. Continue reading

Ventanilla Abierta – What’s the alternative from now on?

UDD Ventures, the first private university incubator and 3rd incubator in Santiago, as well as the 5th incubator in Chile as a whole, is proud to announce they are now an approved partner for the Subsidio Semilla de Asignación Flexible (SSAF), a fund of Innova Chile – CORFO.

The SSAF fund was created to support entrepreneurs to increase access to networks, knowledge and ways of financing at their early stage as well as provide the tools for accelerating their growth.

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Riverwood Capital $200,000 competition: Frequently asked questions

Editor’s Note: Sorry about the long delay since our last post but on 3 June 2012 I completely lost feeling in my entire left leg and have not regained it yet. So co-founder boy has been doing it all from carrying my business workload to serving as my personal caretaker and reminding me everyday why he truly is ‘the best co-founder ever’.

At the same time, we have been getting a steady flow of new (and uber awesome) clients and contracts from Chile to Asia and everywhere in between. We would like to thank everyone for your support, generosity, referrals and patience!!!

About 3 weeks ago AndesBeat published a post to officially announce a $200,000 USD Latin America Start-Up Challenge that had just launched by private equity firm, Riverwood Capital (headquartered in Menlo Park, California, USA).

As the only official media partner in Chile at the time of the launch; one of the first media outlets in Latin America to cover the story; and the designated national curator (Chile) for early feedback sessions with Riverwood Capital partners, we started getting a lot of traction out of the gate very quickly (not only from Chile, but also from other countries in Latin America)!

To date, nearly 100 startups (mostly in Chile) have requested to receive AndesBeat support. And many of the start-ups who contacted us, were off the radar so to speak, with no affiliation to incubators/accelerators and this was their first time applying to a start-up competition. As a result, this whole experience was new to them and we ended up getting a bunch of questions and challenges related to both the application process and positioning their specific product or service offering.

Start your application now or request AndesBeat Support

So in this post, we are going to share some of those questions along with a few tips that highlight the common mistakes we have seen in our initial one-on-one consulting sessions and hope that the information will be useful to others applying to the competition.

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Start-Up Chile ‘Demo Battle’: Take 1

In the world of startups, there is NO TIME, like SHOW TIME, when all that you live and die for day in and day out has to be summed up in about ‘5 minutes’.

For many startup founders, the live ‘Pitch’ is one of the most anticipated but scariest moments in their startup life span whether it is to a future client or a potential investor.

So Start-Up Chile’s newest initiative, Demo Battle, hopes to make this experience a little more comfortable for startups to truly shine when it matters most.  And in the process, strengthen the skill that many entrepreneurs in Chile (and the world over) struggle with – refining and mastering their pitch!

An original creation born out of the offices of Start-Up Chile, Demo Battle will showcase two startups in a 3 round competition.

In the inaugural competition to be hosted at Centro Cultural Amanda, on Wednesday, June 6, 2012 at 7:30 pm, Backyard Brains will face off against Motion Displays. Continue reading

7 days left to apply for NYCEDC ‘LatAm to NYC’ program

There are many cultural differences between New York and Silicon Valley (each place has their own pros and cons), and after reading Chris Dixon‘s thoughts – NYC needs enough tech critical mass that the next Mark Zuckerberg seriously considers relocating to NYC –  is easy to understand why the New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) originally launched a program last year called “World to NYC” as a way to ‘help global entrepreneurs and businesses leverage New York City’s resources and economic opportunities‘.

However, ‘LatAm to NYC‘ program was naturally born after Patricia Bayley’s (Project Manager at NYCEDC) request to Alex Torrenegra (in promoting the program within his networks in Latin America) when they discovered that half of the entrepreneurs that attended to ‘World to NYC’ came from LatAm. Continue reading

Riverwood Capital launches $200,000 Latin America Start-Up Challenge

Earlier today Riverwood Capital announced a Latin America Mobile, Web & Cloud Start-Up Challenge aimed at discovering and showcasing the next wave of highly successful technology startups they believe will be born in the region.

With their average investment check size ranging from US $20-70 million, you can imagine how ‘uber excited’ co-founder boy and I were when we received news that Riverwood Capital was expanding into the Latin America startup scene!

Furthermore, they generously extended an invitation for AndesBeat to be among their distinguished partners to help introduce and personally connect them with Chile’s startup community.

Alas, it is with great honor that we welcome and present to Chile’s startup community, Riverwood Capital, a globally-focused private equity firm that invests in high-growth businesses in the technology and services industries, across a variety of verticals and geographies.

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