On Wednesday (9), the Brazilian Development Bank (BNDES) is launching a public notice for the second edition of BNDES Garagem – its national startups development program. In this initial phase, the selection of the accelerator that will support the initiative will be made. This edition will focus on the creation and traction of small innovative businesses that have socioenvironmental impact, in line with the purpose of BNDES to transform the lives of generations of Brazilians by fostering sustainable development. The program contemplates three acceleration cycles, the first of which will focus on entrepreneurs who develop solutions for health, education, sustainability, innovation in public management (govtech) and sustainable cities.
The Director of Participations, Capital Markets and Indirect Credit, Bruno Laskowski, highlights the focus on socioenvironmental impact as an improvement of the program. “The second edition of BNDES Garagem is going to be even better than the first. We will support innovation with purpose, that is to say, supporting entrepreneurs who seek to develop profitable and scalable solutions to the social and environmental problems of our country.” The present edition of the program also reinforces the role of BNDES as an articulator and promoter of the ESG (environmental, social and governance) agenda, connecting institutional partners, companies, governments and innovative small businesses.
In a live streaming held on BNDES’s Youtube channel with the participation of President Gustavo Montezano, the public notice for the selection of the accelerator that will be responsible for supporting the creation and growth of the companies participating in the program will be launched. The accelerator will monitor the development of the business, providing technical, legal and marketing advice, in addition to promoting the approach of entrepreneurs with investors and potential customers. Together with BNDES, the accelerator shall also conduct the selections of entrepreneurs from all over Brazil interested in participating in the program.
The program – This edition of BNDES Garagem shall feature three acceleration cycles. Each will have up to 45 participants and will last from three to four months. The second edition will last for 30 months in total (counted starting from the contracting of the accelerator) and will select up to 135 participants. The program, which will be free for the participants, will have two modules:
a) Traction – Aimed at impact startups with revenues of less than R$ 16 million that already have a product being offered in the market.
b) Creation – Aimed at individuals or impactful startups with innovative business proposals seeking support for the creation or improvement of a minimum viable product.
During their stay at BNDES Garagem, entrepreneurs will receive guidance and participate in activities that help in the development of their business. At the end of each cycle, a Demo Day will be held at BNDES in which the developed work will be presented to potential investors and other stakeholders. The counterpart of the participants will be the development of their solutions and BNDES will not require shareholding in the business.
"With BNDES Garagem we want to plant several seeds of startups so, who knows, in a few years, we see that some have borne fruit and become big techs or unicorns aimed at solving social or environmental challenges in Brazil," said Laskowski. "BNDES wants to act as a promoter of companies that work in a way that generate positive externalities for society and the market."
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the first cycle will be semipresential, with some of the activities being developed in a space to be provided by BNDES. The intent is that the next ones will be fully in person, depending on the pandemic scenario. The coexistence of participants in the same environment encourages the exchange of information and the establishment of partnerships that can help in the development of business. The face-to-face stage should be held at BNDES’s headquarters in Rio de Janeiro.
The selection of participants in each cycle will take into account diversity criteria, such as gender, ethnicity and geographic location, in addition to the quality of the business. In order to stimulate the presence of enterprises from all over Brazil, BNDES will offer travel and accommodation expenses to participants from other locations.
Accelerator selection – Accelerators or consortia interested in participating in the selection process must register by October 23 by submitting a proposal according to the script available at www.bndes.gov.br/bndesgaragem, where the public selection notice is published. The final result will be released in January.
BNDES Garagem 2018-2019 – The first edition of the program had more than 5,000 startups registered and had 79 participants, 74 of whom completed the cycle. Of the 30 startups that participated in the traction module, the majority had an increase in revenue. About 50 connections with investors were made.
With 44 participants, the creation module resulted in the creation of 16 new CNPJs (Corporate register number), of which 43% already generated revenue by the end of the program. The general rate of recommendation of the program by startups was 95%, indicating a high degree of satisfaction for the entrepreneurs. The first edition also counted on the wide participation of BNDES employees as mentors for startups, contributing to the renewal of corporate culture and the adoption of more innovative and agile practices.
Due to the great demand from entrepreneurs, the BNDES Garagem Network was created. Not restricted to program participants, it seeks to disseminate the culture of innovation and promote the connection between entrepreneurs and investors through initiatives such as the dissemination of educational content and the promotion of events.
About BNDES – Founded in 1952 and currently linked to the Ministry of Economy, BNDES is the main instrument of the Federal Government to promote long-term investments in Brazilian economy. Its actions are focused on socioenvironmental and economic impact in Brazil. BNDES offers special conditions for micro-, small- and medium-sized enterprises, as well as social investment lines, directed at education and health, family agriculture, sanitation and urban transport. In situations of crisis, the Bank acts in an anticyclical manner and assists in the formulation of solutions for the resumption of economic growth.