Bloomberg Línea — While 2021 was the year of mega-round of funding for Latin American startups, investors preferred to shy away from risky assets in 2022: as interest rates rose globally already in the first months of the year, money from venture capital funds got smaller.
Nubank (NU) and Kavak marked 2021 with funding of $750 million and $700 million respectively, as well as amounts of $300 million to $500 million for Nuvemshop, Rappi, Ebanx, Loft, Ualá, and QuintoAndar - for each of these startups.
Meanwhile, in 2022, the year’s biggest fundraising was from Puerto Rico’s EnergyX, with a $450 million private equity commitment, as well as a $300 million Series D from Brazilian neobank Neon.
At Bloomberg Línea’s request, Crunchbase compiled data through December 16 of the largest rounds for private equity firms that are based in Latin America. The data considers companies that have received venture funding, which includes seed contributions, venture capital placements, corporate venture capital, and private equity. Creditas received two rounds in 2022.
The largest 2022 rounds for the region:
EnergyX (Puerto Rico/US): $450 million
Neon (Brazil): $300 million
Multiexport Foods (Chile): $290 million** (According to Multiexport, it was a secondary shares transaction)
Creditas (Brazil): $260 million
Habi (Colombia): $200 million
Velvet (Brazil): $200 million
Lulo Bank (Colombia): $199.8 million
Tul (Colombia): $181 million
Justo (Mexico): $152 million
Nowports (Mexico): $150 million
Creditas (Brazil): $150 million
Recall the biggest rounds of 2022:
The year’s biggest raise was from EnergyX, a Puerto Rico company that optimizes lithium extraction through clean technology. The company received $450 million in July from private equity firm Global Emerging Markets Group (GEM).
Brazilian fintech Neon received a $300 million Series D in February from Spanish bank BBVA.
Neon, founded by Pedro Conrade, is a fintech focused on providing credit to the C class. In December, the company announced the incorporation of Leve, a financial technology company focused on private payroll loans.
Neon, created in 2016, has already bought the companies ConsigaMais, MEI Fácil, Biorc, and Magliano. The bank has more than 22 million customers and is said to have tripled its turnover by 2021.
Chilean Multiexport Foods raises salmon fish for export. The company is said to have made a secondary stock offering.
Brazilian secured credit fintech Creditas has received two rounds of investment this year. The first was in January, a $260 million Series F from US investment firm Fidelity.
Creditas’ second round was a $150 million convertible note to fund its purchase of Andbank, a bank that in return invested $50m in January’s Series F extension, which kept the valuation of the fintech founded by Sergio Furio at $4.8 billion.
Colombian proptech Habi received a $200 million Series C in May when it became a unicorn. Homebrew and SoftBank Latin America Fund led the contribution to the real estate buying and selling platform.
Brazilian fintech startup Velvet received $200 million from Yolo Ventures, the European fund that runs Sportsbet.io, with stakes from family offices, for warehousing investments (discretionary capital) to buy stakes from former employees of pre-IPO startups.
In October, Colombian digital bank Lulo Bank received $199.8 million in corporate investment from IHC (International Holding Company), an Abu Dhabi company that already owned 25% of the fintech.
In January, Colombian construction materials e-commerce platform Tul received $181 million in a Series B round led by the 8VC fund.
Mexican marketplace delivery app Justo, which promises “fairer” rates for delivery drivers, received $152 million in a Series B round led by General Atlantic in April.
Also, Mexican startup Nowports became a unicorn after a $150 million Series C round led by SoftBank in April. The logistics platform automates routes and fleets to help companies’ supply chains.
-- Update Multiexport Foods secondary transaction