Tuesday, August 18, 2009

IBM and VC firms accelerate innovation in Brazil

This week IBM is hosting the IBM Venture Capital Forum in São Paulo, Brazil. More than 100 local VCs, start ups and business partners are gathering at our IBM Innovation Center to discuss key technology trends and fuel new partnerships around industries such as telecommunications, healthcare and energy.

As part of the forum, IBM and FINEP -- the Brazilian Innovation Agency -- announced a new partnership that will focus on establishing new relationships between IBM partners with Venture Capital firms.

IBM has a booming ecosystem in Brazil. This includes more than 3,500 business partners, 500 educational institutions and 100,000 software developers.

And not surprisingly, the VC market in Brazil is thriving. According to the Brazilian Association for Private Equity & Venture Capital, investment has more than quadrupled there since 2004, from $6 billion to $28 billion in 2008. In fact, Brazil is expected to have the largest increase in new investment of any emerging market in the next one to two years, according to a June 2009 report by the Washington-based Emerging Markets Private Equity Association.

Emerging markets like Brazil are becoming increasingly important to IBM. More than 60 percent of IBM's revenue is derived from growth markets like Brazil. One way that IBM is looking to tap into the technological growth in Brazil is through the VC and startup community.

Some interesting articles on this topic were published in BusinessWeek and the Wall Street Journal this morning.

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