SANTIAGO, Chile and NEW YORK, July 28 /PRNewswire/ -- Chile has long been known as one of the best locations for business in Latin America and it just got better. While Chile already offers substantial incentives to businesses large and small who invest in the country, the Chilean Economic Development Agency (CORFO) has launched a new program aimed at world-class bootstrapped organizations, high-potential entrepreneurs and early-stage companies with innovative and high-growth business plans to enable them to quickly launch and run operations in Chile. Start-Up Chile offers entrepreneurs a complete "start-up ecosystem" including entry and logistical support, funding and a sophisticated support network to facilitate the successful launch of their operations.
Twenty-five applicants will be selected for the Start-Up Chile pilot program after a competitive screening process. The program will assist the chosen entrepreneurs with necessary start-up logistics like securing a one-year residency visa, opening bank accounts, obtaining a Chilean ID, understanding Chile's legal and tax system and providing temporary office space. The program also provides seed funding of US $40,000 to cover the entrepreneurs' first six months' expenses. Chosen entrepreneurs will have easy access to local talent and networks through participating NGOs, business incubators and Chilean entrepreneurs. In addition, Chile has an active venture capital industry and the Start-Up Chile program will arrange meetings with angel investors and venture capital funds and facilitate access to other public instruments as well, to maximize the odds for successful follow-on funding. Finally, a group of experienced business mentors is part of the program to ensure that business plans are on the right track from the start.
"Chile is already the easiest country in Latin America in which to do business," stated Hernan Cheyre, Executive President of CORFO. "With the Start-Up Chile program, we have endeavored to build on that platform by creating a complete 'start-up ecosystem,' removing much of the friction that can hold a company back and freeing entrepreneurs to focus on their core competencies and growing their businesses. With Start-Up Chile, we are reaffirming that Chile is open for business and must become the innovation hub of South America."
Chile offers numerous advantages that make it an ideal location for potential entrepreneurs. In addition to its striking natural beauty and exotic landscapes, Chile boasts an open and mature free market that is grounded in a stable political system with sound economic policies. "Chile is a thriving democracy with one of the most open economies in the World. In fact, if I was starting a new tech company and didn't need to be in any particular area, I'd start it in Chile in a heartbeat," stated Vivek Wadhwa, Senior Research Associate with the Labor and Worklife Program at Harvard Law School. "This South American gem could very well morph into the new land of opportunity for immigrants in general and export-centric tech entrepreneurs. The Chilean government has put together an incredible slate of incentives for technology-based companies that export their products."
CORFO, the Chilean Economic Development Agency, was founded by the Chilean government in 1939 and aims to foster economic growth by encouraging investment, innovation, business and cluster development. To date, CORFO has aided more than 57,000 businesses and assisted in 74,000 projects with a goal of encouraging the development of numerous industries throughout Chile. CORFO contributes an annual average of more than $30 million to SMEs programs and more than $38 million to high technology programs alone. For more information, please visit www.corfo.cl.
Contact: Gerald Kimber White
SOURCE Chilean Economic Development Agency (CORFO)