Govtechs are Multilaser’s new bet


Source: Canaltech


A segment still little explored by national startups, the public sector, has just won a fund created by KPTL and Cedro Capital. And a partner is already betting on the initiative: Multilaser is the first strategic investor in the Govtech Fund. The company has a portfolio of more than 5,000 products of various categories.

The company will inject up to R$20 million in the project, which plans to raise about R$200 million in total. “It is a mix of purpose and business. We are combining the useful with the pleasant,” says Alexandre Ostrowiecki, CEO of Multilaser, in an interview with NeoFeed.

This is not the first time the company seeks to enter the world of venture capital: WE Ventures, a fund to encourage female entrepreneurship in technology, has already received R$10 million from the company. In addition, it participates in Qualcomm Ventures’ fund focused on the Internet of Things.

Renato Ramalho, CEO of KPTL, says that Multilaser’s entry in the project goes far beyond the investment itself. “They decided to sponsor the education vertical, one of my favorite ‘boxes’ and one of the big problems Brazil has,” he points out.

As many govtechs are service and software oriented, it is possible to integrate with Multilaser equipment. In the case of education, the company’s tablets can be used.

Health and safety, in Ostrowiecki’s view, are also critical areas of the public sector where partnership can work. “In healthcare, we have oximeters, pressure gauges, wearables, and internet of things capabilities, which will be an industry paradigm in the future,” he says. “Already in security, there is a worldwide trend of equipping the police with live cams and that is still skating in Brazil.”

In the Govtech Fund, besides participating in the committee that will analyze the investments, Multilaser can play other roles. “As long as the regulatory fence is respected, the sky is the limit,” says Ramalho. “This involves everything from the startups’ commercial agenda and the use of Multilaser’s infrastructure to the possibility of testing or onboarding solutions in the company’s products.”

Other interests

The fund is also interested in seven other segments. They are: housing and urbanism, infrastructure and mobility, sanitation, environment and civil defense, smart cities, legal and regulatory, citizenship, and public management.

The initiative seeks startups that already have product and revenue. To begin with, 60% of the R$200 million will be earmarked for initial investments. The other 40% should be used in subsequent rounds in the companies that stand out. “The checks will vary between R$1.5 million and R$2 million, and the idea is to invest between R$3 million and R$5 million over the life of these companies,” says Ramalho.

He explains that there are already 15 startups in an advanced stage of analysis and more than 600 projects mapped. The portfolio base should be closed with 20 to 25 startups. “We have no problem in that pipeline,” says Ramalho. “What there is no shortage of are good opportunities to fish in that aquarium.”

Ramalho points out that many startups have created fast, cheap, and specialized solutions for the segment. “Today, in Brazil, almost 50% of the technology GDP comes from the state,” he says. “We’re talking about mass services. And naturally, that’s a market that any venture capital fund is going to want to approach.”