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IDB Lab Invests in 500 Startups’ Luchadores III Fund

1 July 2020

 IDB Lab announced it will be investing an undisclosed amount in 500 Luchadores III, a fund managed by 500 Startups LatAm. The fund intends to support up to 130 Latin American startups at the seed stage.

(Contxto) Startups have achieved great feats within a lab. But now it’s (figuratively) the other way around. IDB Lab—the Inter-American Development Bank’s innovation arm—wants to cultivate some startups of its own.

Yesterday (1), IDB Lab announced it will be investing into the 500 Luchadores III Fund, managed by 500 Startups LatAm.

This trove of money is tagged to invest in early-stage tech startups for Spanish-speaking Latin America. Just how much IDB Lab dished out is undisclosed. Either way, it will benefit the 130 startups the fund intends to support.

IDB Lab to invest in the ecosystem

When it comes to handling for an investment, it’s important to coincide and trust the other party. And IDB Lab found just that in 500 Startups LatAm’s fund.

“500 Luchadores III’s thesis of intelligently tendering to seed funding aligns with IDB Lab’s mission to promote innovation for more inclusion within Latin America and the Caribbean,” says Tomás Lopes Teixeira, CIO at IDB Lab.

Moreover, it also had some geo-strategic considerations with this contribution.

“We find 500 Luchadores III’s role in deepening the connection between Mexico—one of the primary epicenters of equity capital—with emerging and budding ecosystems in the region to be especially valuable,” added Gyoung Joo Choe and Luis Alejandro Fernández, who are spearheading the project.

Meanwhile, for the fund’s manager, additional resources means making a bigger difference in more ways than one.

“Since 2013, we’ve been working to strengthen the startup ecosystem,” reflects Santiago Zavala, Partner at 500 Startups LatAm.

“And this could be a key moment to generate a deeper impact not only by increasing the number of startups in which we invest, but also enhancing our ability to help the region’s businesses,” ventures Zavala.

In other words, it’s not just about adding more startups to its portfolio. It’s also about helping others (perhaps including its current startups) prosper, thus benefiting the region as a whole.

So it might not seem that way right now, but good things are ahead for the ecosystem.