Building Collaborative Connections in Brazil

Together with a startup delegation, Ignite Sweden and SISP recently visited São Paulo to explore opportunities with its local ecosystem.

Over four days, the delegation visited various innovation hubs, support organizations for market introduction, and met with investors and large Brazilian corporates.

Our colleague Filip Tideman and SISP’s Regina Summer developed the delegation program in collaboration with Anders Norinder from Business Sweden’s local office in São Paulo, with support from CISB, RISE Research Institutes of Sweden, the Enterprise Europe Network and Vinnova – Sweden’s Innovation Agency.

The Brazilian organizations that were part of the program are Bradesco’s inovabra, Invest SP, Governo do Estado de São Paulo, Noon Capital Partners, Cubo Itaú, Bridge Brazil, Itajubá Investimentos Assessores de Investimentos, VOX Capital and Senai São Paulo.

Matchmaking Connecting Swedish Startups and Brazilian Corporates

The trip included an in-person matchmaking session connecting twelve Swedish startups with six leading Brazilian companies: Gerdau, Klabin, Melhoramentos, Oxiteno, Suzano, and Vale. Over 30 meetings were held during the day.

“We got a fast lane to the Brazilian market by getting good connections to the industry and much knowledge about best practice in doing business,” says Arboreal’s Johan Ekenstedt.

The delegation featured some of Sweden’s most promising startups, including Arboair, Arboreal, Biosorbe, ClearWELL, Elonroad, Inomet, Katam Technology Solutions, Vaquita Limited, Viking Analytics, Moving Floor Technologies, and Zigrid.

“The days in São Paulo were unique. In four days, I explored innovation centers, met forestry companies and introduced Katam to several market players. Ignite Sweden and SISP are opening important doors in Brazil for Swedish companies and I am very happy to have been part of this delegation,” says Luiza Federici from Katam Technologies.

Takeaways from the Brazilian Innovation Landscape

Our colleagues share some of their impressions of the Brazilian innovation landscape:

  • São Paulo represents 27% of Brazil’s consumer market (46 million inhabitants).
  • 70% of Brazil’s qualified workforce is located in the state of São Paulo.
  • Brazil has numerous innovation hubs focusing on foodtech, retailtech, agtech, fintech, and healthtech.
  • The Brazilian tax system can be challenging.
  • Brazil has the fifth-largest internet market and the third-largest social media market in the world.
  • The Swedish brand is very strong.
  • A pragmatic distribution strategy is necessary for success in Brazil.
  • Its business culture is based on relationships and a culture where one never “hears a no” (which, in some cases, can be misleading).
  • Language is important as many do not have a strong command of English.

Share this article

Get inspired by the Ignite Sweden Stories and articles

Login for Ignite Sweden members

Sign in to our digital platform Ignite Magic to join our program, check out our upcoming matchdays, update your company profile, and access useful resources created exclusively for members such as legal templates and other material to help you prepare for your meetings.

Not a member yet?

Click on the boxes below to learn more about our memberships and get started.