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Dealflow.la #60 - Fuel shortage crisis 🇦🇷, Hurricane Otis 🇲🇽, Bionexo 🇧🇷 raises $20 Million, Bolivia 🇧🇴 severs ties with Israel 🇮🇱, Opposition primaries 🇻🇪, & a Cocaine vaccine 🇧🇷.
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VAAS 🇧🇷 raised a $2 Million Pre-Seed round led by ABSeed Ventures 🇧🇷, with funding from Honey Island Capital 🇧🇷 and Fuse Capital 🇧🇷 to build a transaction monitoring platform designed to prevent crimes and suspicious activities. The company's platform checks the risk in pix and crypto transactions in real-time and automatically blocks high-risk transactions, and cross-references on-chain and off-chain data to detect risk entities and check origins of customer and recipient resources and identify inconsistencies, enabling financial institutions, including banks and DeFi platforms to protect themselves against regulatory risks and high-risk transactions.
Verqor 🇲🇽 raised a $4 Million Seed round led by Yara Growth Ventures 🇳🇴, with funding from SP Ventures 🇧🇷, GLOCAL 🇦🇷, Amplifica Capital 🇲🇽, and Accion Venture Lab 🇺🇸 as well as $3.5 Million in Debt Financing from CO Capital 🇲🇽 and Addem Capital 🇲🇽 to build an agriculture-based financial software platform designed to build a place where all the players in the agriculture industry can connect with buyers and sellers for the benefit of farmers. The company's platform allows farmers to buy all the agro supplies and machinery on credit through the platform, financial institutions are able to place low-risk credits in agro-based on alternative credit score criteria and the crop buyers receive quality crops, enabling clients to have better control and transparency in the supply chains.
Finerio 🇲🇽 raised a $6.5 Million Seed round led by Third Prime 🇺🇸 with funding from Winklevoss Capital 🇺🇸, Visa 🇺🇸, Plug & Play Design 🇬🇧, Krealo 🇵🇪, Gaingels 🇺🇸, Bancolombia 🇨🇴, Alaya Capital 🇨🇱 to keep building their automated and free personal finance platform designed to help users improve and manage their finances. The company's platform specializes in creating custom budgets, monitoring, and tracking expenses, viewing financial information, linking bank accounts, and analyzing consumption patterns, enabling users to plan and control their expenses and increase their savings.
TIMining 🇨🇱 raised a $10 Million Series B round led by Kayyak Ventures 🇨🇱, with funding from LarrainVial 🇨🇱, Komatsu 🇯🇵, and Alpha Future Funds 🇩🇪 to build a 3D geotechnical pit management and fleet software designed to support mining experts in their decision-making. The company's software transforms data into information, using advanced analytics and 3D computing algorithms, and delivers simulations and predictions based on actual data and performance, enabling clients to make proper operational, planning, geotechnical and continuous improvement decisions.
Bionexo 🇧🇷 raised a $20 Million Private Equity round led by Bain Capital Tech Opportunity 🇺🇸 to continue building their technology software intended to offer digital services for managing healthcare processes. The company provides an integrated suite of cloud software and marketplace technology as well as planning and inventory management solutions, helping hospitals efficiently source critical care products while empowering suppliers to extend their reach and acquire new customers.
Argentina faces fuel shortages due to increased demand and rumors of price hikes post-election. Shipments are now arriving to alleviate this. Energy Secretary Flavia Royon assures no sudden price hikes. Tourism, elections, and anticipated shortages heightened demand. The country's economic crisis intensifies issues, with 140% inflation and a devalued currency. Oil companies including YPF and Axion Energy promise normalization soon. Diesel shortages concern farmers, potentially affecting soy and corn crops. (Reuters)
Argentina is experiencing its worst fuel shortage in years due to domestic refining issues and delayed imports from a dollar deficit. This has caused long queues at gas stations and widespread distress among drivers. The crisis is affecting the upcoming presidential elections and has sparked anger towards the government. Argentina's government has capped local oil prices to combat inflation, affecting import economics. If not resolved, the government threatens to halt crude oil exports. Fuel producers have proposed a resolution plan. Union threats loom if the situation isn't addressed. (Reuters)
The Oil and Gas Union in Argentina plans a total strike, accusing oil companies of penalizing Argentines and supporting Economy Minister Sergio Massa's fuel normalization measures. They demand adherence to national self-supply laws and condemn corporate speculation. The union emphasizes the workers' commitment and criticizes profit-driven speculators. Oil companies assure fuel supply normalization soon amid persistent long queues at gas stations. They attribute the shortage to high demand, dependence on imports, and anticipated shortage concerns. (BA Times)
Uruguayans have spent nearly US$1 billion in Argentina this year, capitalizing on Argentina's economic downturn which offers cheaper food, vacations, and shopping. With Argentina's 140% inflation, Uruguayans are finding significant bargains, doubling their visits and expenditures compared to 2022. This trend is diverting consumer spending from Uruguay, impacting its economy and retail sector. (BA Times)
Bolivia severed diplomatic ties with Israel, accusing it of "crimes against humanity" in Gaza. Chile and Colombia recalled their ambassadors, criticizing Israel's military actions against Hamas. Bolivia, Chile, and Colombia have leftist governments. (AP)
Brazilian state-run oil company Petrobras reported a 9.6% increase in crude oil production in Q3 compared to the previous year, producing 2.32 million barrels per day. Including natural gas, daily output averaged 2.877 million barrels, an 8.8% rise. The growth is attributed to the operation of new offshore platforms and reduced maintenance stoppages. Notably, 81% of their production originated from Brazil's pre-salt fields, an increase from 73% the previous year. Petrobras also witnessed a 6.4% growth in oil, gas, and derivatives sales. (Reuters)
Scientists in Brazil are developing "Calixcoca," a vaccine to treat cocaine and crack addiction. Tested successfully on animals, it triggers an immune response preventing the drugs from affecting the brain. If approved, it would revolutionize addiction treatment, offering a cost-effective, non-biological solution for recovering addicts. (Barron’s)
Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva stated that Brazil won't prioritize erasing its fiscal deficit in the upcoming year, emphasizing the significance of funding essential projects and construction investments. Lula criticized investors for unrealistic expectations and mentioned the challenges of China's economic slowdown and rising U.S. interest rates. His comments negatively impacted local markets. (Reuters)
Brazilian legislators have established a congressional caucus to support the nation's oil and gas industry, including Petrobras's offshore exploration plans near the Amazon River's mouth. The caucus, comprising 42% of the lower chamber, aims to rally political backing for these endeavors and enhance Brazil's energy infrastructure. Environmental concerns persist, but the group emphasizes the region's economic potential and ongoing reliance on oil.(Reuters)
Following the police killing of a crime boss in Rio de Janeiro, criminal groups retaliated by torching at least 35 buses. The attacks, mainly in the city's west, disrupted transportation and led to school cancellations. The crime boss was linked to the state's largest militia, a significant regional security threat. Twelve suspects were arrested in connection with the fires. (Reuters)
A 6.6 magnitude earthquake hit off northern Chile's coast, felt in Argentina's provinces. No immediate damage reported and no tsunami risk. The epicenter was near Huasco in Chile’s Atacama region. (ABC)
President Gustavo Petro's allies faced significant losses in Colombia's regional elections, indicating discontent with the nation's first left-wing government. Traditional center-right parties dominated, challenging Petro's reform efforts. (AP)
President Gustavo Petro's allies risk significant losses in Colombia's major cities in regional elections, hinting at potential government paralysis. Petro's plummeting popularity challenges his reform initiatives amid rising national security concerns. (Bloomberg)
Residents of Barrancas, Colombia, held a march demanding the release of Liverpool footballer Luis Díaz's kidnapped father, Luis Manuel Díaz. Authorities are intensifying the search, suspecting a criminal gang's involvement. (BBC)
Ecuador, once stable and prosperous, has rapidly become a hub for the cocaine trade, with drug cartels exerting significant control. The assassination of presidential candidate Fernando Villavicencio underscores the country's deteriorating security. (Bloomberg)
Colombia will supply Ecuador with geothermal energy to mitigate electricity shortages caused by a severe 50-year drought affecting Ecuador's hydro-electric plants. Ecuador faces a 650-megawatt deficit, worsened by El Nino. (Reuters)
🇸🇻 El Salvador
El Salvador's President Nayib Bukele seeks re-election in 2024, despite constitutional restrictions. While the Supreme Court allowed it, critics claim it's unconstitutional. Bukele remains popular, especially for his anti-gang measures. (ABC)
El Salvador's President Nayib Bukele declared a state of emergency due to tropical storm Pilar, predicted to bring heavy rain and potential floods. A "red" alert was issued, with classes suspended. (Reuters)
The U.S. imposed visa restrictions on several Guatemalans, accusing them of undermining democracy. This move pressures officials, especially the attorney general, amid allegations against President-elect Bernardo Arevalo's election integrity. (Reuters)
Hurricane Otis, a Category 5 storm, left 100 people dead or missing in Acapulco, Mexico. The city suffered immense damages, and residents face food and water shortages, prompting concerns of looting. (Reuters)
Former Mexico City Mayor Claudia Sheinbaum leads the presidential race with an 18% lead over rival Xochitl Galvez, polling at 46%. Sheinbaum represents MORENA and is supported by President Lopez Obrador. (Reuters / US News)
Haiti's government suspended all flights to Nicaragua from its capital, affecting a major route for Haitian migrants aiming for the U.S. Over 31,400 Haitians used this route from August to October. (Reuters)
Chinese migrants increasingly traverse Panama's Darién Gap, seeking refuge from China's political repression and economic challenges. Rising from 913 in January to 2,588 in September 2023, 15,567 have crossed this year. Social media guides support their journey, offering route details. Emigration surged after President Xi Jinping removed presidential term limits in 2018. Upon reaching the U.S., many settle in cities like Los Angeles and New York. (NBC)
Panama's President Laurentino Cortizo announced a referendum on December 17 to decide the fate of a contract with Canadian mining company First Quantum. This follows protests against the open-pit copper mine project due to environmental concerns, despite its significant contribution to Panama's economy. (Reuters)
Peruvian President Dina Boluarte plans to discuss strategies to combat drug trafficking with U.S. President Joe Biden during her visit to Washington for a regional summit and an IDB forum. (Reuters / US News)
🇵🇷 Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico police arrested 380 individuals in their largest recent crime crackdown, targeting 12 gangs involved in drugs and weapons sales. Authorities seized firearms, vehicles, cash, and drugs. The FBI and other federal agencies participated in the operation. (ABC)
Uruguay's Minister of Defense, Javier García, signed a contract with Ciemsa company for the modernization of the Fray Bentos border crossing. The $12 million project, which will provide various services, is expected to generate around 240 jobs during construction. García emphasized the importance of presenting a modern, efficient border to visitors, reflecting Uruguay's image. The first phase involves creating a parking area with essential amenities. Payment systems for extended stays will be introduced, offering enhanced services for truck drivers and others. (BNamericas)
Venezuela's electoral court has suspended the results of the opposition primaries after allegations of fraud by President Nicolás Maduro. This move threatens a US-brokered agreement. The court demanded documents, including already destroyed voting sheets. María Corina Machado, who won 93% of the primary votes, has been barred from contesting public office till 2030. Analysts believe this may lead to further action against the opposition. The US is closely monitoring the situation, ready to act if Maduro's regime doesn't honor commitments. The opposition denies breaching any terms. (Bloomberg)
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