"Investors from Northern Europe use Spain as a bridge to reach Latin America".
TECHNOLOGIST How important is the Latin American market?
MARÍA BENJUMEA It’s huge, with big potential. Mexico, Colombia, Chile, Argentina and Brazil are part of a very interesting market, with cultural affinities, but they represent only a part of it. Nowadays there are no language barriers: Spanish start-ups are not focussed only on Latin America because we do everything in English. On the other hand, investors from northern European countries are very interested in innovations from Latin America and use Spain as a bridge to reach them.
TECHNOLOGIST Should Spain try harder to keep its start-ups from being bought by overseas companies?
MARÍA BENJUMEA The market and talent are global so we can’t put a fence around our fields. It’s a good thing Spanish companies are successful, and I’m not afraid that some of them are leaving. Spain is already an attractive country for start-ups, and actually companies from other countries are coming here.
I think we should try to make Spain even more attractive for them, simplifying things and creating better fiscal conditions to encourage them to stay.
Interview by Teresa Guerrero @
As the founder of Spain Startup, María Benjumea organizes Madrid’s annual showcases innovations from southern Europe, the Mediterranean and Latin America.