Business

MAYA Capital raises another US$ 15 million to invest in Latin American startups

With this, the fund created by Lara Lemann and Mônica Saggioro reaches a total amount of US$ 41 million. Resources will support pandemic-driven solutions

MAYA Capital's co-founders Lara Lemann and Mônica Saggioro. Photo: Courtesy/MAYA Capital
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  • The funds come from FOs in the United States, Europe, and Latin America;
  • To date, MAYA has invested in 24 startups;
  • With the new resources, the firm wants to expand its portfolio to up to 35 Latin American startups.

MAYA Capital, a fund that invests in early-stage startups in Latin America, announced a new fundraising of $15 million, from family offices from the United States, Europe, and Latin America, especially Brazil and Mexico. The new amount complements MAYA’s first fund of nearly $26 million (received in 2018), totaling $41 million available for Latin American startups.

READ ALSO: Launched amid the pandemic, Brazilian startup Alice wants to change the logic of private health care in the country

MAYA will use the new resources to support solutions and opportunities that have emerged or were boosted by the COVID-19 pandemic. To LABS, the co-founders of MAYA Capital, Lara Lemann and Mônica Saggioro, said that, as happened after the 2008 crisis, which helped boost companies like Uber and Airbnb, the coronavirus pandemic “helped make some problems more evident and, consequently, the potential of their solutions.”

Our way of commuting, work, feed, interact with other people has changed and many new needs – and, consequently, business opportunities – have emerged from that ”, said the two in a joint interview by e-mail.

There is no deadline for applying the new resources. “This will depend a lot on the teams and solutions with which we will have contact. But we are happy to remain well capitalized to invest in the region over the next few years because we are seeing many good opportunities,” they said.

To date, MAYA participated in more than 30 rounds of 25 startups, from sectors such as health, real estate, finance, mobility, and logistics. Among the startups backed by MAYA Capital are the Chilean foodtech NotCo, the construtech Oico, the fintech Belvo, and the health tech Nilo. With the new resources, the fund intends to increase its portfolio to up to 35 startups.

READ ALSO: Brazilian real estate startup Alude raises a $3.3 million Seed round

We are looking for companies that propose to understand and solve relevant and real problems, and we hope to generate positive effects on the economy, development, and the quality of life of Latin Americans

Lara lemann and mônica saggioro, maya capital’s co-founders

The MAYA advisors team includes entrepreneurs André Street, from the Brazilian unicorn Stone, Victor Lazarte, from unicorn Wildlife, Rafaela Villela, from Gera Ventures, and Marcos Leta, from Fazenda Futuro.

READ ALSO: From Tembici to CargoX, Valor Capital Group keeps investing in Brazilian startups amid the Covid-19 pandemic

MAYA Capital was born as a LatAm-focused fund

MAYA Capital was created in 2018, but its history began two years earlier, when Mônica and Lara met. They were looking for ways to apply their knowledge and experiences to boost the transformational process in Latin America, favoring the region’s economy and development.

READ ALSO: World Economic Forum selects 4 Latin American startups as tech pioneers

MAYA was created when the founders realized that while there were 12 startups for each venture capital fund in the United States, that number reached 80 companies for each VC in Latin America.

“MAYA was born focused on solving Latin America’s biggest problems with solutions based on innovation and technology. From the first day
of the fund we take into account all the challenges and peculiarities of the
region in our decisions,” they stated.

READ ALSO: Chilean NotCo raises $85 million and accelerates operations in the U.S.

According to them, the focus on Latin America is also explained by the need to internationalize a business so that it really escalates. “For this to happen, we need to have in-depth knowledge of the different markets in the region to help them when that time comes.”

Problems in different countries in Latin America occurs due to very similar factors. Because of that, we believe that a Brazilian solution may be applicable in Chile or in Argentina

LARA LEMANN AND MÔNICA SAGGIORO, MAYA CAPITAL‘S CO-FOUNDERS.
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