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Latin America Experienced Explosive Growth in Web 3 Investment in 2021 – Report

According to the 2022 LAVCA Trends in Tech report, VC investment in blockchain/crypto reached $653 million in 2021 up from $68 million in 2020 in parallel with rising consumer interest for digital assets and Decentralized Finance (DeFi).

Furthermore, the report revealed that capital was concentrated in consumer-facing asset exchanges and retail trading platforms.

Some notable rounds were observed for the following organizations:

  • Mercado Bitcoin ($290m across three rounds)
  • Bitso ($250m)
  • Ripio ($50m)
  • Lemon Cash ($17.3m)

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Beyond consumer-facing web 3 apps, the report discovered that investors began backing B2B platforms in Q1 2022, including:

  • Liqi ($5.5m)
  • Gavea Marketplace ($5m), and 
  • Agrotoken ($5m)

Similar to Africa, the fintech sector in Latin America was the leading tech sector for VC investment registering $6.1 billion invested across 258 transactions, growing almost four times as compared to 2020.

On the whole, Latin America saw an expansion (tripling) in VC investment in tech. In 2020, LAVCA registered $4.14 billion in VC investments in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic. In 2021 this figure was found to have reached $15.7 billion. In the process, 16 tech-powered enterprises reached unicorn valuation.

Sixteen startups surpassed $1B+ in disclosed valuation in 2021: Bitso, CargoXClara, Clip, CloudWalk, FacilyKonfio, olistMadeiraMadeira, MeramaMercado BitcoinMURALNotCoTiendanube/Nuvemshop, Ualá and unico.

Notably, four Mexico-based startups surpassed $1B in disclosed valuation in 2021 following Kavak in 2020 as well as BitsoClara, Clip and Konfio.

– LAVCA Report

Similar to Africa, Latin America is home to many of the world’s emerging economies with countries such as Brazil, Mexico, El Salvador, and Argentina all being leading players in the emerging crypto landscape.

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RECOMMENDED READING17 Out of the Top 20 Markets in Global Crypto Adoption are in Emerging Markets – Kenya Tops in Africa – Says Latest 2021 Chainalysis Index

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