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I'm going to Chile. Startup Chile is calling me -

I’m going to Chile. Startup Chile is calling me

Last week I received the news that Easy Vino had been accepted to Startup Chile, a six-month government-run program that brings startups from all over the world to Chile. I think this is a brilliant program but I’ll talk about that in a later post. For now I want to explain why I think this is good for Easy Vino right now.

Accepting the invitation wasn’t as straight-forward as it might sound. Sure it is an increasingly prestigious program, with a growing number of applicants (1500+ for the last edition) and a tight yield (6.7% acceptance rate). And let’s not dismiss the number 1 argument – it’s $40,000 of equity-free money, which means 6 months of runway for a small team living in Chile.

But that was not enough to make me move to Chile for 6 months. I needed a plan, and that plan involved:

  1. Team. There is no question that teams make and break startups. You know what makes and breaks a team? Spending six months living together, working side by side. Chemistry building!
  2. Recruiting. I was surprised with how many people actually know the program, and particularly in the tech world I found it being as powerful a recruiting tool as any top tier US incubators. There is great talent in Chile.
  3. Product. Building a product from your garage might be a romantic view, but there is nothing like moving to a foreign country with one goal in mind to help us stay focused. Product development and product/market fit will be our focus for the next six months.
  4. Pilot. Our product makes the most sense in the US market and we want to keep building our pilot in California. That means we needed to keep a physical presence in the Bay Area, which we will, and that was a crucial part of our plan.

Moreover, we will have access to an increasingly dynamic startup ecosystems, great mentors, and potential investors. It’s hard to say no. That’s why we already started packing.

Chile here we go!

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