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How U.S. tech companies can find their perfect match in Chile — for free

You won't want to miss this free virtual event. Photo by WestEnd61/Getty

Beginning October 19, American companies can explore opportunities with Chilean products and services, all without hopping on a plane or spending a dime.

Chile Connected, sponsored by ProChile, is a nearly month-long virtual event designed to serve as a "matchmaker" for technology firms as well as creative industries, healthy food providers, and women-led businesses.

If you're wondering "why Chile?" there are some very solid stats to make you look twice at the South American country. Chile is the 29th largest trading partner of the United States, while we are the No. 1 destination for non-copper goods and service exports from Chile.

Chile is also recognized as the most advanced IT market in Latin America, with a performance that's superior to Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, and Peru. The IT sector there represents 3.4 percent of its national GDP.

Chile has had a long and prosperous history of trade with the U.S., particularly in the 16 years since the implementation of the TLC agreement. This treaty has allowed trade to increase over 220 percent between both countries over this time period.

So now that Chile's got your attention, mark your calendar for October 27-29, when the tech and innovation panel will welcome high-level experts and keynote speakers from both markets in the areas of HealthTech, EdTech, FinTech, and RetailTech.

A study done by the Ministry of Sciences in March 2020 indicates that 13 percent of Chilean startup companies with a scientific and technological base are related to the area of health.

If you're specifically looking for companies that specialize in biotech or biomedicine, digital (AI, deep/machine learning, IOT, and big data) technologies, or a combination of these, this would be the event to find them.

Fifty-three percent of Chilean companies like these have stated they need a joint venture in order to explore other markets, and the recent success of companies like GenoSUR and Levita have proven the market is ready for partnerships (you'll hear from top-tier leaders at both during the panel).

Chilean RetailTech providers have demonstrated to be a generation of highly sophisticated and specialized tech service providers, while their FinTech specialists aim to satisfy the needs of this demanding segment within the U.S. market.

Register for your free spot here, and gear up to find your next great international tech match.

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Building Houston

 
 

Seven startups walked away with cash prizes from this year's MassChallenge accelerator program in Houston. Photo via Getty Images

MassChallenge named its winners of its 2020 accelerator at a virtual event on October 22. The program awarded a total of $200,000 in equity-free prizes across seven startups from its second Houston cohort.

This year's program took place completely virtually due to the pandemic. Already, the 56 startups involved in the cohort have raised $44.4 million funding, generated $24 million in revenue, and created 297 jobs, says Jon Nordby, managing director of MassChallenge Texas in Houston, in a news release.

"This has been a year full of change, to say the least," he says. "But startups thrive in uncertain times — because they can move fast and remain agile, they are able quickly meet each new need that arises. I'm extremely proud of the startups in our 2020 cohort — during the course of the program, they've pivoted, adjusted, and evolved in order to grow their businesses."

The startups that won across the Houston cohort included Houston-based PATH EX Inc., which won the $100,000 Diamond Award, is focused on the rapid diagnosis and treatment of sepsis through an unique pathogen extraction platform.

Four companies won $25,000 Gold Awards:

  • Healium, based in Columbia, Missouri, is an extended reality device created for self-management of anxiety.
  • Ozark Integrated Circuits Inc., based in Fayetteville, Arkansas, specializes in problem solving using technology and software in the harshest environments – from jet engines to earth orbit.
  • PREEMIEr Diagnostics, based in Southfield, Michigan, created a way to identify which premature infants need an adjustment to their glucose levels to prevent them from losing vision.
  • Scout Inc., based in Alexandria, Virginia, is developing the first commercial in-space satellite inspection service.

Two companies won the Sidecar Awards, securing each a $25,000 Innospark Artificial Intelligence Prize.

  • Articulate Labs, based in Dallas, makes mobile, adaptive devices to help knee osteoarthritis and knee replacement patients rehabilitate on the go during everyday activity.
  • Houston-based Starling Medical has tapped into tech to optimize urinary catheter for patients with neurogenic bladder dysfunction.
The Houston Angel Network awarded Ozark Integrated Circuits their prize of $50,000.
"The progress these entrepreneurs made in just a few months has all of the hope, drama, anticipation, and optimism of seeing dawn break after a particularly difficult night," says Wogbe Ofori, Principal at 360Approach and a MassChallenge mentor, in the release. "It's fulfilling, actually, and makes me proud to be a MassChallenge mentor."
The seven startups were awarded alongside 27 other startups from this year's Austin, Boston, and Rhode Island accelerators at the virtual event. The event was hosted by Chris Denson of Innovation Crush, and featured a fireside chat between Arianna Huffington, founder and CEO of Thrive Global, and Linda Pizzuti Henry, managing director at the Boston Globe.
Earlier this fall, MassChallenge named its 10 startup finalists, whittled down from 56 from 13 countries and 13 states to its first-ever virtual accelerator, which began in June.

"In the face of great uncertainty, MassChallenge Texas in Houston charged forward and did exactly what they ask their startups to do: love the problem," says Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner in the release. "The successful pivot to virtual is a testament to the strength of their global community and the motivation of the Houston ecosystem to get behind new ideas and create businesses that will set roots and grow here.

"As one of the most innovative cities, Houston is a place where startups can thrive – even in the midst of a pandemic. Programs like MassChallenge provide the best practices and networks to ensure startups get the access they need to create sustainable businesses and lasting change."

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