Saturday March 15th marked Inspiring Capital’s first international meetup in Brazil! It was an inspirational event with quality people in the emerging Brazil socent scene. Frederico Rizzo, co-founder of Broota, a start-up we will highlight soon, and Kusi Hornberger, management consultant and prolific socent blogger, helped organize the event. On a bright and sunny afternoon, we met for brunch and drinks at Bargallo in Sao Paulo’s Itaim Bibi neighborhood. Our intimate group spent over two hours discussing the complexities of impact investing in Brazil, brainstorming ideas for future meetups, and getting to know one another’s history and experience with socent. Despite Brazil’s rapid economic growth and political standing, financing and legal infrastructures seem to be the main obstacles for maturing the current impact investing community. The lack of financial support in the field prevents willing talent to pursue less traditional jobs that are socially and environmentally conscious. Many aspiring social entrepreneurs resign to more conventional paths that can provide a secure livelihood. While this is not unique to Brazil, it seems to be more of a pressing issue than in other countries such as the United States, which has ample public and private resources for start-ups and SMEs that focus on social issues. At first glance, this might seem inconsistent with the reality of SMEs in Brazil, which account for over 50% of formal jobs in the country and contribute around 20 % to its GDP.  While there is a thriving start-up industry, many of the businesses are not addressing specific social issues. Instead they focus on developing technological advancements in the country. However, this doesn’t mean there isn’t an immense amount of potential for collaboration and social good! I look forward to sharing what our little but faithful group will do in the upcoming months. Stay tuned!

Saúde!

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