Endeavor Puerto Rico catalyst fund raises $1M from local investors
Three years since its establishment on the island, Endeavor Puerto Rico has raised $1 million for its Endeavor Catalyst Fund, from local investors who seek to support the nonprofit’s goal “to help more entrepreneurs innovate, grow and create a mark on the global stage.”
The nonprofit presented a result report that summarizes the most important metrics achieved for the benefit of the community of high-impact entrepreneurs. The list includes 369 “moments of impact,” including hours of mentoring, introductions to investors, regional events, and professional development programs exclusively for its participating entrepreneurs.
Those “moments of impact” include participation from Puerto Rico in 53 international events, four professional development programs in partnership with prestigious business schools from universities such as Stanford and Harvard, 71 introductions to high-caliber individuals for entry into new markets, investment and business opportunities, and more than 240 hours of mentoring with the select group of international mentors from the Endeavor network.
Pursuing its purpose to connect and scale these entrepreneurs, Endeavor has led the high-impact entrepreneur movement since 1997, supporting more than 2,100 founders in diverse industries in more than 35 markets around the world.
In Puerto Rico, the organization has built a support ecosystem that is focused not only on generating results for companies at the local level, but also opening doors for them to scale their business ideas to other international markets.
During these first three years, Endeavor has also managed to channel through its selection process 14 companies with the ability to scale internationally and generate changes in economic indicators that can help Puerto Rico’s economic recovery.
Among the most significant data on the impact of these entrepreneurs is the generation of more than 2,200 jobs, more than $400 million in reported combined profits, and the expansion of operations to six regions outside the island.
Of these companies, three managed to complete the process and became Endeavor Entrepreneurs. Among them, Abarca Health, a pharmacy benefits management company whose founder and president, Jason Borschow, was the first to become an Endeavor Entrepreneur in 2019. After three years of support, Abarca managed to raise by more than double the number of employees, celebrating this year reaching a team of 500 employees.
That same year Carlos García, founder of Trip Ventures, was selected as representative of this conglomerate of technology companies in the hospitality space based in Silicon Valley, which reached $36 million in capital raised and the acquisition of two other companies to continue the expansion of the business.
Under this group is Andiago, a digital platform that offers restaurant recommendations and reservations in more than 60 countries as an exclusive partner of Forbes Travel Guide. Finally, the co-founders of the Connect Assistance company, Antonio Ortiz and Carlos Nieves, became Endeavor Entrepreneurs in 2020. Connect Assistance, which offers roadside assistance insurance in Puerto Rico, Panama, Colombia, and Costa Rica, registered an increase of 85% in its revenues in the 2018-2020 period, as well as a 1,100% growth in its workforce.
“Without a doubt, Puerto Rico has been at the epicenter of great challenges and changes that have highlighted the importance of having a solid and structured entrepreneurship ecosystem that provides real international growth opportunities to those who decide to undertake,” said José Stella, chairman of the Endeavor Board of Directors.
“Three years after launching Endeavor in Puerto Rico, we have managed to integrate more than 20 entrepreneurs into a global movement of connections and knowledge that will allow them to scale their businesses to the next level,” he said.
“We’re ready to continue growing our community, creating alliances and opening paths for these high-impact entrepreneurs and for Puerto Rico to return to a route of leadership in the Caribbean region and in the world,” he said.