ImpactAlpha, February 14 – Favelas Fundos aims to invest 50 million reais ($9.5 million) to seed tech startups serving the slum economy. The seed fund is Brazilian entrepreneur Celso Athayde’s latest effort to bring economic opportunities to low-income residents of Brazil’s favelas.
Athayde has for decades supported youth projects in favelas through Central Única das Favelas, a network of community centers. He has also helped start two dozen favela-based businesses through Favela Holding.
“There is a thriving economy in the favela,” Athayde told Forbes. “Companies have started to realize that.”
Favelas Fundos’ has so far raised 20 million reais. Its early commitments came from high-net-worth investors and companies that have backed the network of community centers.
Favelas have gotten a pandemic-era boost from the shift to remote learning and work. But tech and Internet connectivity are often not available or affordable. Through Favela Holding, Athayde has supported Alô Social to bridge such connectivity gaps.