Latin America has become a fertile ground for the creation of tech startups, especially fintech. The number of startups, which through technology seek to transform financial services, has drastically increased in recent years.
According to a report by the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), in Colombia, in 2020, the number of fintech companies increased by 26%, compared to the previous year. With this, the country became the third Latin American market for this type of startups, after Brazil and Mexico. In addition, it is projected to be one of the best market players worldwide.
One of the factors that has promoted the growth of the fintech industry in the country has been regulation and investor interest in creative and innovative projects, which contribute to improving services, user experience, financial inclusion and literacy in the region.
This is the case of FinZi, a Latin American fintech that seeks to revolutionize financial services by offering products to a segment that historically has not been prioritized by traditional banks: teenagers. Although, FinZi will also work hand in hand with the parents of these new generations, their main target customer is teenagers between 10-17 years old.
In addition to being a fintech, FinZi is an edtech that has set itself the goal of ensuring that, through technology and digital tools, teenagers learn about financial education in a didactic and fun way and at the same time apply this knowledge to their own real bank account. A goal that FinZi aims to achieve with the partnership of a local Colombian bank.
According to Juan Zavala, co-founder and CEO of FinZi, the edtech/fintech combination and the potential the Gen Z segment has were aspects that captivated private equity funds and angel investors from all over the world.
The possibility of empowering teenagers through innovated products and financial education attracted private equity funds from the United States and Singapore such as Innopact. Likewise, to local angel investors from Colombia and foreigners, such as Allen Gannet, a technology entrepreneur and First Check Ventures, who were interested and believed in the transforming potential of the project for the segment and the Latin America region, Zavala mentioned.
In a short period of time, FinZi secured a pre-seed capital of US $350,000 and they plan to continue raising more funds in their next rounds of investment, to be able to capture and position the company in the Colombian market and to eventually expand to other Latin American countries.
The interest of investors in Latin America specially in tech startups is unquestionable. In the first quarter of this year alone, the region achieved a record amount of capital invested in digital businesses, reaching US $ 7.3 trillion, Forbes Magazine mentioned.
In this sense, the Silicon Valley 500 Startups fund, throughout its chapter in Latin America, has financed more than 200 companies in Mexico, Colombia, Peru, among other territories. And, currently, they have an open call to obtain resources that will be allocated to technology companies in the region that are seeking to develop and grow.
In summary, Latin America is experiencing a boom in technology innovation and investor interest in startups that seek to change financial services through technology. A clear example of this is FinZi, a fintech that shows that innovative disruptive ideas and projects with transformative potential are of interest to international investors.