Rounds of the Week: Around, Eva Center and Lemon Energia Secure Funding

Even though the region saw some late-stage movements this week, more earlier rounds were garnered by startups in the region

Investors are raising new funds and flocking to early-stage startups, boosting the startup segment even as money is becoming scarce.
June 24, 2022 | 09:00 AM

Bloomberg Línea — Investors continue to inject new funds and are flocking to early-stage companies, as Bloomberg Línea reported earlier this week, boosting the startup segment even as money is becoming more scarce.

Roberto Kanter, an economist and professor on MBA courses at FGV, recalls that investors such as Y Combinator have been investing in early-stage startups for some time because they believe that, when they participate in a company “halfway along the road”, they may have less power to intervene in its direction and make modifications.

Silicon Valley and local players continue investing in early-stage startups in the region. But some late-stage companies also received a boost this week. SumUp, a German point-of-sale (POS) provider, which also operates in Latin America, raised $624 million from Bain Capital Tech Opportunities. The latest round is a combination of debt and equity, bringing SumUp’s total capital raised to $1.58 billion, and its valuation to $8.5 billion.

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Carlos Schaaf, Country Manager of SumUp Chile, said in a statement that the new round will help the company focus on delivering solutions to meet the needs of local businesses in Chile, where there is still plenty of room to grow. The investment will also serve to improve the company’s operations in Colombia and Peru.

Here are some of the startups that received funding this week:

Eva Center

Mexican health tech Eva Center, dedicated to the creation of innovative solutions for the medical sector, announced a new $7 million capital raise by investors MBX, TeleSoft Partners, and Browder Capital.

With this raise, the startup, which began by producing a wearable device that detects breast cancer, has raised a total of around $25 million.

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The new investment will be used to grow the current team by 30% and expand the company’s operations to Brazil, Colombia, Argentina, and Chile.

Since launching in September 2021, the company has focused on boosting tele-radiology by enabling physicians to innovate their services and access technology.

Vergo

A fintech, Vergo, which was co-founded by Mexican entrepreneur Einar Hohenstein and its current CEO Richard Kane, seeks to capitalize, guarantee liquidity and streamline the finances of operators who coordinate projects in the construction industry.

The platform helps optimize construction management and home renovation projects by contractors, builders, designers, and architects.

The startup received more than $4.1 million in a round led by CRV with the participation of Nine Four Ventures and Forum Ventures, with which it will expand its operations team and products in the United States and consolidate its technology hub by hiring new talent.

Vergo was launched on June 22 in the U.S. to improve its clients’ finances.

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Lemon Energia

Brazil-based marketplace for clean energy Lemon Energia closed a 60-million-reais ($11.5 million) round in a Series A led by Kaszek with the participation of Lowercarbon Capital. The startup intends to offer clean sources of energy, such as solar energy, and biogas, giving users a wider choice of energy source, depending on their location.

AppJusto

A delivery app that aims to compete with iFood in Brazil, AppJusto pledges fair fees to couriers. The idea was endorsed by 939 investors from a crowdfunding platform. The company raised 1.8 million reais (almost $350,000) on the equity crowdfunding platform Kria.

Examedi

Chilean home medical services startup Examedi closed a $17 million Series A led by General Catalyst. The health tech founded in May 2021 aims to attack inequality in access to medical care in Latin America by connecting patients directly with nurses and partnering with laboratories to process samples.

The round also saw the participation of angel investors such as Thomaz Srougi (Dr. Consulta), Sebastián Mejía (Rappi), and Jamie Karraker (Alto Pharmacy).

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This round adds to the $3.5 million seed funding the company raised after graduating from YCombinator in the summer batch of 2021. In its early stages, Examedi also went through the regional accelerator Platanus Ventures.

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The investment will be used to fund the development of new products, as well as to expand its geographic operations beyond Chile and Mexico, with Colombia and Peru among its possible new markets.

The Crunch

Latin American eServices startup The Crunch raised $1.1 million in a seed capital round, with which it intends to expand its services across Latin America.

Pablo Estrada founded The Crunch nine months ago. With a team of 60, the marketplace services platform has offices in the United States, Mexico, and Guatemala.

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With its central hub in Mexico, The Crunch seeks to provide cost-effective solutions for companies that have a high volume of inventory and the infrastructure for rapid marketplace growth. So far, it has managed more than 200 companies.

Around

Mexican startup Around received a $3.8 million seed round led by LEAP Global Partners, with the participation of Latitud Ventures, Ganas Ventures, Gaingels, Unpopular Ventures, Tribal Global, August Hill, and a16z scout fund. With the investment, the company projects five-fold growth in the next year.

Around converts vacant real estate into fully-serviced office space on flexible terms for growing teams, while remaining asset-light with no exposure to fixed rents. More than 1,100 employees from over 100 local and foreign companies work from one of Around’s more than 130 locations in Mexico.

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The company plans to expand to major cities in Latin America. Its current client portfolio includes startups and venture capital firms, such as Tribal, Flink, Fondeadora, Investo, and Monashees.

Before launching Around, co-founders Martin Haiek, Alfonso Tinoco, and Gerardo Vallarta worked for four years as growth consultants with more than 150 startups from various countries and industries.