Latin America is quickly becoming a major hub for entrepreneurship and startups. Not only buoyed by a vast, young population, Latin American economies are growing at a fast pace. This has made entrepreneurship attractive to direct investment and a deep talent pool of professionals in the area.
While many of the most popular startups have exited or have listed on a stock exchange, there are still many Latin American startups, known in the community as “Latin-X,” to get excited about. With input from 500 Startups, Draper University, Fownders and Make in LA, below are CIO’s list of Latin-X startups watch for in 2017.
Getting on board with the startup scene, Konfio is a startup that offers funding to other startups. The process is made much simpler than getting a loan from a bank, and it’s proving to be an effective business model.
Those that want to start an online business can have trouble receiving payments for any good or service they sell. Conekta is bridging that gap, simplifying the process for business owners.
Clip is a mobile payment service based out of Mexico. The aim of the startup is to facilitate the process of making payments among Spanish-speakers.
Designed to help entrepreneurs learn the skills they need to start their own business, Platzi is an education site that offers multiples courses on design, programming, marketing and more. While it was started in Latin America, it offers courses in multiple languages.
Education isn’t just important for entrepreneurs. Yogome is a startup that uses hundreds of mini-games to teach children different skills that are bound to help them throughout their lives. Children will be engaged while also learning anything from spelling to mathematics.
Nubank is a mobile-based banking app that aims to simplify financial dealings for everyone. While the company is based out of Brazil, Nubank’s goal is to make a global impact over the coming years.
Sometimes there just isn’t enough time in the day to get groceries. Cornershop is the solution, offering groceries within 90 minutes of your order. They only serve a few supermarkets right now, but they should continue to grow and expand to different countries.
Kubo Financiero is a one-stop lender and investor. They began as a lender, offering quick and affordable loans. They’ve since expanded to investment as well where they take invested money and use it to create loans for others.
The global traveler is becoming more common, particularly when it comes to entrepreneurship. To meet this rise in travel, Bluesmart has created the ultimate luggage – able to charge your phone, lock remotely and weigh itself before you arrive at the airport.
Many startups and small businesses have products, but they aren’t easily able to find out where the best place to sell their product is. InfoPrice connects sellers with the right markets and stores to improve margins and increase sales.
Cybersecurity is a growing concern, leading to the success of startups like Auth0. Auth0 provides a platform that guarantees secure login and communication, and it can be used for anything from private accounts to employee web pages.
InstaCarro is an app that provides a high-quality, and efficient, way of selling used cars. After your car is evaluated by the app, they have over 1,000 dealers compete for the car, ensuring that you get the best price on your used vehicle.
Pets have always been important to people, but they are sometimes hard to travel around. One solution is Brazil-based DogHero which offers your dog a friendly home to stay in while you’re away. You can be safe knowing your dog is with a loving and caring host – or hero, as they call it.
14. Beauty Date
Beauty Date is a one-stop app for all things beauty. Whether you’re looking to get your hair done, want to get a massage or are looking for another beauty service, Beauty Date connects you with all options, helps you set a time and then schedules your appointment.
Farming and growing livestock are still a huge part of business in many Latin American countries, but that doesn’t mean that its agricultural sector is without internet or technology. BovControl collects data on your products, whether it be milk, meat or something else, and helps you improve your sales and growth.
UpPoints is another app that aims to track and analyze data on how efficiently certain products are selling in certain locations. This data is then used so retailers can maximize their efficiency, selling more products are the right price.
Pinmypet is exactly what it sounds like – an app and site that lets you know exactly where your pet is through a special Pinmypet tag. But it doesn’t stop there – they have a social network where you and your pet can meet others.
Grubster is a restaurant and bar rating app that has grown in popularity in Brazil. Users can also reserve tables, browse menus and find other restaurants in their area.
19. Easy Taxi
Easy Taxi may sound like Uber, but get this – it is much bigger than any other taxi app and is present in just about every Latin American country.
You can control everything about your car through Nexer. Nexer tracks your car’s location, keeps you in touch with a mechanic online and keeps track of your car’s computer at all times.
The startup Remediocerto connects people to their contraceptives without having to visit the pharmacy, making the entire process easier and safer.
A little bit meta as far as apps go, RankMyApp does exactly that – it ranks apps. However, it goes a little beyond a review and improves your app’s visibility, SEO and other optimizations.
23. Exact Sales
Exact Sales is a sales software firm that tracks all your businesses data to improve total sales. It might sound like a typical startup, but they’ve received well over $1 million in funding.
Netshow.me is a live-streaming hosting service. Since livestreaming is quickly becoming an important marketing tool, they’ve made sure that their platform is accessible on both mobile and desktop.
An app that makes global connectivity even cooler, Worldpackers connects professionals of any field with the perfect position – in a different country entirely. Teach your skill and enjoy an experience unlike any other!
Many startups need apps created to support their marketing, but they can’t afford an in-house developer. Enter Koder, a developer-for-hire site that allows entrepreneurs to hire a coder as needed.
Atipica, founded by a female entrepreneur, is a data crunching business that connects business with the right employees. They go beyond simple recruiting, using algorithms to find the perfect match.
One of the cooler inventions that’s come out, Emerge and Mid-Air-Touch are offering a virtual experience unlike any other: the ability to touch something that isn’t there. The ultrasound speakers generate the sense of touch - even though nothing is there.
Sabio offers one of the best software engineering instructional courses possible. They have only hired the best engineers, ensuring that every class taught is more valuable than almost anything else you’d find.
My Money My Future (Mi Dinero Mi Futuro) is a platform that helps millennials budget, save and plan for their economic futures. They are targeting millennials specifically, so they generate both long and short-term plans.
Customizable healthcare is available through Impacthealth, a company that offers health insurance at a reasonable price. Just put in your information and it will come up with a “best fit” plan for you, saving you time and money.
Sports safety is becoming more important each year, and FITGuard is the newest revolution in preventing head injuries. The mouthguard keeps track of your health and can detect any problems that might occur.
InSpirit is simplifying the way you make craft cocktails. Unless you’re going to a cocktail bar, it’s hard to get a high quality drink. InSpirite combines all the ingredients to make a consistently great cocktail.
34. Ix Style
Started by Francesca Kennedy, Ix Style designs and sells unique sandals. Each purchase goes on to provide potable drinking water for women and children, and the company supports female artisans.
Do you think we missed any names for Latin-X? If so, comment below.
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