In our monthly analysis of LatAm fintech news, Thiago Paiva looks at M&A, investments, trends, partnerships for the region’s startups.
In February, competition stepped up among neobanks in Latin America, while QED and Kaszek invested in Argentina
The year still doesn’t seem to have started for the fintech ecosystem in the region. In February, there were only 6 fintech investments worth $5.8 million in Latin America. Only three of them disclosed the amount invested, with the total disclosed less than a quarter of the previous month investments (check out what happened in January in this post).
Surprisingly, Mexico not only took the lead this month on the investment volume ($3.3 million – 56% of the total) but also had the first fintech exit of the year involving one of the unicorns in the region, Rappi.
An Argentinian fintech received an investment from nothing less than QED and Kaszek, two of the best funds that invest in the region. This deal would probably be the largest investment of the month, considering the investors involved – however, the amount wasn’t disclosed.
Also, the neobank battle in the region seems to be heating up quite fast, with N26, from Germany, announcing that will enter the Brazilian market while Nubank is not only hiring 400 employees but also is said to be entering the Mexican market.
February, the shortest month of the year, is usually a quiet month, and this year wasn’t much different. Don’t get me wrong, the ecosystem feels like it is getting momentum but it seems like it will only take-off after the Carnival.
Well, let’s jump into the relevant fintech deals and news of February, and stay tuned to the next Fintech Snapshot next month!
Special thanks to Denisse Cuellar from BCP for helping with this snapshot.
LatAm Fintech Investments
- Brazil – The factoring fintech Adianta received around $2.3 million of investment from DGF Investimentos, 42K Investimentos, and Chrono Investimentos in addition to the earlier investors Yellow Ventures and OsherTech
- Brazil – Finpass, formerly F(X) and also in the lending space, received an undisclosed investment from BTG Pactual. The Brazilian bank invested a total of $2.7 million in 2 non-fintech startups together with Finpass
- Brazil – The AI-based financial advisor, Olivia, received two round of investments, the first one from XP Investimentos with undisclosed value, and the second from BR Startups in a $400,000 round
- Argentina – The Argentinian mortgage fintech Agilis received an undisclosed investment from QED and Kaszek
- Mexico – OikoCredit made the largest disclosed round of the month in Laudex, a student loan fintech, investing $3.3 million
LatAm Fintech M&A
- Mexico – The Latin American unicorn Rappi acquired the fintech Payit, the Mexican Venmo, for an undisclosed amount to focus on growing its e-wallet. This was the first announced fintech acquisition of the year
- Chile – Chile’s regulator has set out its views on collective financing operations and how they should be legally supervised
- Mexico – M2Crowd became the first company to request authorization under Mexico’s Fintech Law
- Colombia – Colombia Fintech and Open Vector closed a partnership to foster the open banking movement in Colombia
- Argentina – Banco Columbia partnered with novae to support its digital transformation
- Brazil – Brazil’s biggest banks launched the first positive credit bureau in the country, Quod
- Mexico – Scotiabank and Tecnológico de Monterrey launched a new fintech accelerator in Monterrey, Factory A
- Brazil – The European neobank N26 announced that it will enter the Brazilian market.
- Brazil – Nubank started to offer personal loans to its customers. It also started hiring for 400 new staff
- Brazil – BTG Pactual, Latin America’s largest investment bank, launched its first Security Token Offering (STO), and the first one backed by a big bank
Thiago Paiva is a partner at Liquia Digital Assets, an investment bank for the digital assets economy. He is passionate about the intersection of finance and technology.
He has 8+ years working with startups and innovation, investing in more than 60 startups through global accelerators Wayra (Telefonica’s global accelerator) and Startupbootcamp Fintech. He worked closely with more than 20 fintechs from 8 different countries for the past five years.
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