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Brazilian Fintech Kamino has raised US$ 6.1M in a pre-seed round to help Latin American startups

March 15, 2022
Por
Business Insider
Business Insider
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There's more venture capital flowing into Latin America than ever before, but getting the funds in founders' hands is not exactly a simple process.
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In 2021, investors funneled $15.3 billion into Latin American companies, more than tripling the previous record of $4.9 billion in 2019. Fintech and e-commerce sectors drove funding, accounting for 39% and 25% of total funding, respectively.  

However, for many startup founders in the region who have successfully sold their ideas and gotten investors on board, there's a patchwork of corporate structuring that's needed to access the funds, according to Benjamin Gleason, who was the chief financial officer at Groupon LatAm prior to cofounding Brazil-based fintech Kamino.

It's a process Gleason and his three fellow Kamino cofounders have been through before as entrepreneurs and startup execs themselves.

Most often, startups have to set up offshore financial accounts outside of Brazil, which "entails creating a Cayman [Islands] holding company, a Delaware LLC, and then connecting it to a local entity here and also opening US bank accounts for the Cayman entity, which is not trivial from a KYC perspective," said Gleason, who founded open-banking fintech Guiabolso in Sao Paulo. His partner, Gonzalo Parejo, experienced the same toils when he founded insurtech Bidu.

"Pretty much any international investor will usually ask for that," Gleason said, adding that investors typically cite liability issues.
"It's just a massive amount of bureaucracy, complexity, a lot of time from the founders. All of this just to get the money from the investor that wants to give them the money," he added.

That's why Gleason and Parejo, along with cofounders Guto Fragoso (a former product lead at Amazon Brazil) and Rodrigo Perenha (former director of engineering of the fintech arm of online marketplace Mercado Libre) started Kamino.

Kamino is a one-stop shop for fast-growing startups and SMBs in Latin America, which covers everything from incorporation services and marketing to financial products, like credit lines and corporate credit cards.

The upstart works with a local partner bank in Brazil, SVB in the US, as well as several law firms and accountants across the US, Cayman Islands, and Brazil.

"You have all these different pieces," Gleason said, "we're the single point of contact and we have all these different partners on the back."

The fintech, which was founded in October 2021, raised $6.1 million in pre-seed funding Tuesday to launch the offering. The round was led by Inspired Capital, with participation from QED Investors, Flourish Capital, Propel VC, Clocktower Technology Ventures, Picus Capital, and Global Founders Capital, among others.

Las opiniones compartidas y expresadas por los analistas son libres e independientes, y de ellas son responsables sus autores. No reflejan ni comprometen el pensamiento u opinión de Latam Fintech Hub, por lo cual no pueden ser interpretadas como recomendaciones emitidas por la platafomra. Esta plataforma es un espacio abierto para promover la diversidad de puntos de vista sobre el ecosistema Fintech.

In 2021, investors funneled $15.3 billion into Latin American companies, more than tripling the previous record of $4.9 billion in 2019. Fintech and e-commerce sectors drove funding, accounting for 39% and 25% of total funding, respectively.  

However, for many startup founders in the region who have successfully sold their ideas and gotten investors on board, there's a patchwork of corporate structuring that's needed to access the funds, according to Benjamin Gleason, who was the chief financial officer at Groupon LatAm prior to cofounding Brazil-based fintech Kamino.

It's a process Gleason and his three fellow Kamino cofounders have been through before as entrepreneurs and startup execs themselves.

Most often, startups have to set up offshore financial accounts outside of Brazil, which "entails creating a Cayman [Islands] holding company, a Delaware LLC, and then connecting it to a local entity here and also opening US bank accounts for the Cayman entity, which is not trivial from a KYC perspective," said Gleason, who founded open-banking fintech Guiabolso in Sao Paulo. His partner, Gonzalo Parejo, experienced the same toils when he founded insurtech Bidu.

"Pretty much any international investor will usually ask for that," Gleason said, adding that investors typically cite liability issues.
"It's just a massive amount of bureaucracy, complexity, a lot of time from the founders. All of this just to get the money from the investor that wants to give them the money," he added.

That's why Gleason and Parejo, along with cofounders Guto Fragoso (a former product lead at Amazon Brazil) and Rodrigo Perenha (former director of engineering of the fintech arm of online marketplace Mercado Libre) started Kamino.

Kamino is a one-stop shop for fast-growing startups and SMBs in Latin America, which covers everything from incorporation services and marketing to financial products, like credit lines and corporate credit cards.

The upstart works with a local partner bank in Brazil, SVB in the US, as well as several law firms and accountants across the US, Cayman Islands, and Brazil.

"You have all these different pieces," Gleason said, "we're the single point of contact and we have all these different partners on the back."

The fintech, which was founded in October 2021, raised $6.1 million in pre-seed funding Tuesday to launch the offering. The round was led by Inspired Capital, with participation from QED Investors, Flourish Capital, Propel VC, Clocktower Technology Ventures, Picus Capital, and Global Founders Capital, among others.

Las opiniones compartidas y expresadas por los analistas son libres e independientes, y solamente sus autores son responsables de ellas. No reflejan ni comprometen el pensamiento o la opinión del equipo de Latam Fintech Hub y, por lo tanto, no pueden interpretarse como recomendaciones emitidas por la plataforma. Esta plataforma es un espacio abierto para promover la diversidad de puntos de vista en el ecosistema Fintech.

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