Living and working in Latin America for over ten years has given me an appreciation for the talent and drive of entrepreneurs in the region. After growing up in the United States and studying Economics and Engineering at Rice University, I served as a U.S. Peace Corps Volunteer in the Dominican Republic. From this initial experience in Latin America, I was motivated to continue working in the region to support entrepreneurs by inspiring sophisticated capital to invest in the region. I went back to school with an eye on moving to Latin America and working in the private sector. My time at Wharton and the Lauder Institute was crucial to putting me in a position to do what I do now. We have set up AVP Ventures with solid local backing in Peru and have had the opportunity to accompany a special group of startup founders. I hope you can take some time to read their stories on our webpage. These founders, and others like them, are building the future of Latin America.
ON THE LOOK OUT FOR
I enjoy speaking to founders who match an ambitious vision for impact with a firm grasp of the steps it will take to get there. My most rewarding conversations are with founders that are open to sharing the challenges they face and analyzing together the intricacies of the business model. I look out for founders that go into detail on metrics and unit economics, are process-oriented, and can talk through how they make decisions. The best founders are those that are dedicated to building a diverse team and strong culture. I get most excited about startups that are solving real problems for people and businesses in Latin America. These companies are building the technological tools that Latin America requires to address core issues like economic inequality and quality of education. Often these are business models that serve enterprise clients or small business owners. Other times, they are digital tools that open up access to consumers.