– By Bianca Campos and Vincent Neumann, Innovation & Startup Program Managers at Swissnex in Brazil
The second semester was particularly intense, with five startups in Brazil for the market validation and market entry programs (Innosuisse Internationalization Camps) and 19 entrepreneurs from Swiss science-based startups for the 9th edition of the Academia-Industry Training week in Brazil.
In August, the healthtech Diaxxo and the digital agritech Agrinorm landed in São Paulo for the market validation camp. They had many interesting meetings, and now, a potential partnership is being evaluated for Diaxxo to enter the Brazilian market. In November, artificial intelligence and data technologies ruled the road with two market validation camps for Veezoo and CollectID and one market entry camp for WeCheer.
Can you imagine having answers to all relevant management and business intelligence questions just by asking? The Swiss startup Veezoo provides the answers we’ve been looking for with an analytics system that puts the user in the center. The solution was built on understanding all the different ways how a person would formulate a question and offer the most understandable answers through their available (and, most of the time, unused) data.
With Brazilian founders, the startup is validating its business hypothesis and models and has already conquered the first customers in Brazil. Besides presenting its solution to more than eight potential big customers during the CASE exhibition, the most significant event for startups and entrepreneurship in Latin America, the startup was one of the seven finalists at the Embraer Startup Marathon. The marathon aims to connect startup solutions to the innovation challenges of the demanding areas and to accelerate and optimize the hiring process of startups in this giant Brazilian multinational aerospace manufacturer.
Just in time for the Brazilian excitement in anticipation of the FIFA world cup, the startup CollectID kicked off their market validation camp by finally meeting their largest client, the renowned football club Atlético Mineiro, in person. In November, the University of St.Gallen (HSG) spin-off set out to expand its Brazilian market traction with the CEO & founder David Geisser, and business developers Lukas Paschka and Catarina Ramos.
CollectID connects physical products with the digital dimension and the metaverse by adding a smartphone-ready NFC tag to each product and creating a digital twin in the form of an NFT for each corresponding physical product.
The authenticity of a product is ultimately protected, and it takes away the scalability of creating counterfeited products. Besides, it allows brands to develop valuable first-party data about who owns what product and when sold indirectly via retailers. A new communication channel is created, enabling brands to communicate directly via a product with their end consumer.
Their innovation connects beautifully with football clubs and their merchandise. The shirts are counterfeited in millions, and the relationship with the fans is crucial to the success of any club. Filling this market gap, the startup met with three major football clubs in São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro. Regarding scalability, everyone is familiar with the significant role football plays in Brazil.
After initial market research and analysis of possibilities, the next step is to get the first customers and then build traction within a new market. One crucial enabler is building the team that will work and represents the startup in that region. A common conclusion of the Swiss startups participating in a market validation camp in Brazil is the relevance of having a Brazilian representative to develop the business. Thus ensuring cultural, language, and business bridges between the startup HQ and the new market to conquer.
The Swiss startup Wecheer is an example of this. After the market validation camp, they hired Camila Santos, a Brazilian business expert who developed the market in the country. They have returned to the market entry camp with impressive numbers; Brazil already represents 30% of Wecheer revenue worldwide!
Due to the rising demand in 2022, for 2023, Swissnex in Brazil expects to organize and support even more Swiss startups and entrepreneurs to validate the potential and conquer the Brazilian Market through the Innosuisse Internationalization Camps. The primary strategy for 2023 is to leverage the business potential of technology events in Brazil and combine them with the Internationalization Camps to bring even more valuable connections and visibility to the startups.
For more information about the Innosuisse Internationalization Camp click HERE.