Mexican Fintech takes the SpotlightBy Sofía Hanna | Thu, 05/06/2021 - 16:00
RedGirasol, founded in 2016, became the first green venture in Mexico to combine solar energy with collective financing to help combat climate change. The company connects people with companies that want to install solar panels or invest in green projects by linking two growth elements: crowdfunding and renewable energies explains the company on its website. “Financial crowdfunding was born as a result of the financial crisis of 2008. It is an alternative business model, 100 percent digital, that seeks to disintermediate the financial world and allow many people to participate in activities that, before, were only reserved for large financial institutions,” explained Juan Carlos Castro, Co-Founder and CEO of Briq Fund, in an interview with MBN. In Mexico, “the (crowdfunding) industry was born from the efforts of entrepreneurs who believed in this business model, even when the regulatory framework did not exist,” explained Castro.
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- Remittances are of significant importance to Mexico’s economy, representing 3.8 percent of the GDP in 2020. Last year, remittances were driven by the economy’s contraction, but the latest report from the Bank of Mexico indicates that the average amount per operation fell by 2 percent. March remittances reached a total of US$4.1 million, a new historical maximum, reflecting a 2.6 percent growth. However, this has been their smallest advance in 11 months. Mexico depends heavily on remittances and the recent GDP contraction showcases the country’s dependence on this inflow of money, according to BBVA. During Labor Day, the Mexican Institute of Social Security (IMSS) informed that the government was still missing 2 million jobs, so the local population depends more on the money coming from outside the country.
- Pablo González, Co-Founder and Chief Design Officer Bitso and an MBN Startup Contributor, explained the importance of design in the mass adoption of cryptocurrencies. He mentions that due to the recent boom of cryptocurrencies worldwide, it would seem surprising if someone has not at least heard of the term “cryptocurrencies.” The media, magazines, books and movies have explained in various ways bitcoin’s creation, operation and how it is traded, so anyone with interest in the financial market is able to describe what bitcoin is. However, few people have noticed one important feature of this technology: its design. He also highlights this company’s responsibility to develop products that fit people’s needs and positively impact their day-to-day lives.
- Bitso raised US$250 million in a Series C investment, bringing its valuation to US$2.2 billion to become the first crypto unicorn in Latin America. The investment will be used to continue providing access to cryptocurrencies to local residents and expand operations. “We want to make sure that folks in the region really benefit from accessing these global financial services that are getting built on top of the blockchain,” said Daniel Vogel, Co-Founder and CEO of Bitso, in a statement. By 2020, the platform processed more than US$1.2 billion in international payments, including remittances and payments between companies. According to Bitso, the platform has over 95 percent of the crypto market share in Mexico and over 60 percent in Argentina.