Startups flying in


Erika Abrego is behind Fiction Design, where awesome objects tell stories. She is part of Start-Up Chile’s 7th round, which first group of entrepreneurs landed in Chile last week.


by Erika Abrego

It’s interesting what a group of motivated, smart individuals can do for society. It’s not like I know everything about Chile (I actually arrived here just a week ago), but I think I’m starting to get what a project like Start-Up Chile can do about this countries problems.

So far, I’ve seen web platforms that aim, for example to create a searchable directory of doctors in Santiago (it was pretty useful when my teammate got sick). As a foreigner, getting used to a new country, websites like Medko really can make a difference. Thanks to it, I could easily search for doctors in the area, and even though I didn’t at the end use the services of a doctor, it’s good to know that I can run to it if something happens.

Another thing that’s been really helpful is GoPlaceIt. This site lets you set up an area in a Google provided map and then alerts you when apartments or houses become available in those areas. Then again, since this is my first time in Chile, finding a house was my first priority and GoPlaceIt definitely made the search smoother.

These two are just a couple of examples of start-ups from enthusiastic people, that saw a problem and a way to fix it. It might seem that there’s much more to it, but at the beginning, there isn’t. It’s just you (or maybe a couple of teammates) with the clear belief that you can do something to make your surroundings better. And that’s what Start-Up Chile is about.

If this is just two, now imagine what a bunch of entrepreneurs flying in and developing to their best can do for this place? I was talking to a friend the other day (she’s generation 6.2 of Start-Up Chile) and she was saying that even if sometimes the projects break apart, or the teams didn’t work in the end, or if a Start-Up took longer than the 6 months the program lasts to develop, it still is creating a paradigm shift in the minds of chileans. I think that this is now a burgeoning society that can be fertile field for entrepreneurs to develop and teach others what they know, who will on their own accord, then maybe become entrepreneurs or just try to make their home, neighborhood or country a better place to live in.

I am now just starting my participation as an entrepreneur in round 7 of Start-Up Chile and hopefully I will be able to post more about what I experience and what I learn from the other people in my round and of course from this country.

Pic by  ed___209 on Flickr (cc)